Monday, May 10th, 2021

Shopper Client Stories


Guaranteeing the highest level of customer service

by Cristi Sanchez

Tasha Tracy and General Manager Mike Granger <BR>greet customers at the AAA Chesapeake Car Care Center.

Tasha Tracy and General Manager Mike Granger
greet customers at the AAA Chesapeake Car Care Center.

When most people think of AAA, they think of roadside assistance, towing services, auto protection, and travel planning. So, it may come as a surprise to many that AAA has facilities nationwide that provide auto repair services. Even more surprising than that, they will give those competitively-priced services to non-AAA members.

The local presence of AAA Car Care was established in Chesapeake seven years ago in an inconspicuous repair shop on Battlefield Boulevard South near Hanbury Road. For the past three years, the full-service auto care facility has been under the command of General Manager, Mike Granger. Friendly, quiet, and unassuming, Mike, a Portsmouth native, has been in the auto services industry since his time attending Churchland High School.

"I started working at Western Auto when I was 16," Mike recalls with a smile. His dedication to hard work and customer satisfaction enabled Mike to move up the ladder in the car parts and services industry. He remains humble about his achievements. "I started at the bottom," he says with a grin. "I was a parts boy, and eventually worked my way up to service and then management."

"When I hire technicians,
I look beyond job knowledge...
there's more to being
a AAA employee than that.
Honesty plays a big role
There's no up-selling
of unnecessary repairs here.
Every customer can be confident
that we won't take advantage of them."

- Mike Granger

Steadfast and dedicated, Mike stayed with the same company through several mergers. "It was quite a ride," he says with a chuckle. "Western Auto became Parts America, where I became assistant manager. Parts America eventually got bought out by Advance Auto, where I was the manager for two years." It was his move to Merchant Tire and Auto, where he served as store manager, which eventually led Mike to AAA Car Care.

A long-time friend and former colleague worked at AAA Car Care when an opening for a General Manager became available. Knowing AAA's commitment to quality service and customer care, he instantly thought of Mike and told him of the opportunity. "AAA is a great company, and this was a great opportunity, so I jumped at it," Mike reveals. With his vast experience in service and customer relations, Mike instantly fit in with AAA's philosophy and culture of customer care.

"AAA has very high standards for customer service, "Mike says without hesitation. "Our philosophy is all about taking care of customers. We even have tests we have to take every month as part of our continual, ongoing training, and reinforcement on our customer service values. We take it very seriously."

As General Manager of AAA Car Care, Mike maintains shop flow, takes care of members, and is in charge of hiring employees. He takes his responsibility to AAA and its customers very seriously and hires only quality applicants.

"When I hire technicians, I look beyond job knowledge. I mean, yes, that's important, but there's more to being a AAA employee than that. I only hire quality techs that are honest, professional, and customer satisfaction oriented," he states emphatically. "Honesty plays a big role. We treat each customer as if they're family. There's no up-selling of unnecessary repairs here. Every customer can be confident that we won't take advantage of them."

Mike has high expectations for his technicians. He ensures every one adheres to his standards of quality work. "To every technician that comes in the door, I stress the importance of doing the job right the first time and doing it promptly, which comes back to customer satisfaction. If you don't get it right the first time, customers have to bring their vehicle back, creating dissatisfaction with the AAA Car Care experience. And here, customer satisfaction always comes first."

Customers of AAA Car Care can obtain all car repair services from engines to transmissions, AC to tires, oil changes, and state inspections. Qualified and certified auto repair technicians always service vehicles.

"In addition to our regular certified technicians, we have three master techs on staff," Mike explains. "All technicians, standard and master, have to maintain their ASE certification, which stands for Automotive Service Excellence. Techs have to go every four years for training to maintain their certifications. AAA is committed to and invested in keeping trained high-quality techs, so they pay for the training to keep qualified people on staff." Technicians also receive training from parts, product, and equipment vendors throughout the year to ensure that they're able to maintain the set standard of quality work done right the first time.

AAA Car Care's commitment to customer satisfaction starts with and stands on quality work and service, but also extends to maintaining their customers' peace of mind with first-rate NAPA auto parts, and extended warranties. "Our warranty is a 24 month/24,000-mile warranty on parts and labor. That exceeds the industry standard 12 month/12,000-mile warranty," Mike points out. "An added plus is that the warranty will be honored by AAA Car Care shops nationwide, so, people can have peace of mind should they need repairs while they're traveling."

Keeping members' busy schedules in mind, AAA Car Care strives to provide a convenient experience. "Car repairs can be a hassle. We want to make things as convenient as possible for customers," Mike says. "To facilitate that, the shop is open until 6 p.m. during the week and until 4 p.m. on Saturdays, with shuttle service within a five-mile radius for members Monday through Friday." To make repairs convenient for members' schedules and to avoid long waits, appointments can be made for any service other than inspections.

While AAA Car Care center is open to both AAA members and non-members, members receive extra benefits, like a 10 percent discount on parts and labor, half off on state inspections, free flat repair, and Member Appreciation Day every Wednesday where they'll receive an oil change and tire rotation for one low price. But non-members need not despair. If they should have to spend $250 or more on car service, they receive a basic membership for free, providing them with one year of AAA benefits.

With competitive pricing, honesty, and dedication to customer satisfaction at all times, Mike Granger has made the often-overlooked AAA Car Care into a found gem that provides auto repair customers with convenience and peace of mind through quality repairs done right the first time backed by AAA's highest standard of customer service- a pleasant surprise, indeed.

AAA Chesapeake Car Care Center

1023 Battlefield Boulevard
Chesapeake, VA 23322


3529 Bridge Road
Suffolk, VA  23435