Additive advantage

Additives are a great tool to have, and provide handy additional income, but according to VLS it pays to do your homework

Published:  06 July, 2021

For any garage, finding new revenue streams is a key priority. Being able to increase your profit per vehicle makes business sense. But with so many products out there, how does a workshop owner know which way to turn? Which product is a genuine business opportunity that works for both your garage and your customers and which could turn out to be a waste of money, or worse?
According to Fortune Business Insights, the global fuel additives market is set to reach $12,117.8 million by 2028. Fuel additives can help vehicles perform better, reduce carbon emissions and increase fuel efficiency. Oil additives can help to reduce friction and wear within the vehicle, as well well as keep engines clean by flushing through deposits such as sludge. Both types of additives and cleaners can also create a valuable additional revenue stream for garages. What motorist wouldn’t want to give their vehicle a deep clean from the inside out, leaving it in tip-top condition and delivering improved fuel economy?
But according to Andrew Goddard, Chairman of the independent trade body for lubricants, the Verification of Lubricant Specifications (VLS), it’s not quite that simple. Andrew urges caution when it comes to oil additives: “The latest generation of highly sophisticated lubricants is formulated with advanced chemistry, using the latest synthetic technology. They strike a delicate balance of meeting manufacturer specifications within exacting tolerances. The tiniest change in a formulation can have a real impact on the performance of the finished product. “Aftermarket additives could mean that the performance of the lubricant to cool, clean or protect moving parts is not as effective as it was, as well as causing an unnecessary expense to consumers.”
That’s certainly an outcome no garage owner would want. Andrew continues: “Lubricants are working harder than ever before, catering to the strive for reduced emissions, demand for greater performance and better fuel economy. Smaller engines are running at higher temperatures to maximise efficiency, power output and fuel economy. Longer oil drain intervals, taken together with smaller sumps, have created the need for less viscous, synthetic oils to provide the lubrication required in these challenging conditions while meeting customer’s demands for performance and economy. Added to that, lubricants must be able to cope with temperature changes, increased bio-content in fuels, hybrid vehicle technology, challenges like start-stop functionality and overcoming problems arising from LSPI.”
So it sounds like it pays to do your homework when it comes to additives. Garage owners should make sure they really research any stand-alone additive packages they are recommending or using, and understand how they might impact the consumables already in customers’ vehicles. That way, you can be confident that you are making the right choices for your business and your customers in both the short and long term, balancing short term profit with long term business sense.

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