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Wrench makes the car mechanic come to you

A new Seattle startup that may make the auto shop obsolete. Wrench sends mechanics on the road.
Credit: Anne
Seattle startup Wrench delivers mechanics to the car that needs to be repaired

SEATTLE — A company called Wrench is changing the way we go to car mechanics -- by sending the mechanic to us.

Trevor Koehn is one of 30 mobile mechanics working for this Seattle startup.

How he's doing this oil change - in a parking garage at a customer's workplace - is a quantum shift for car care.

"Nothing’s really changed since the first car rolled off the assembly line in terms of how you maintain it,” said Casey Willis, one of Wrench’s co-founders.

"Our goal is to remove the hassle of car ownership and we're starting with mobile mechanics."

But don't call them 'the Uber of car repair'. Their mechanics are employees -- not freelancers.

What's being shared here is expertise.

"We take care of vetting, and doing background checks, and we stand behind that service with a 12 month, 12,000-mile warranty,” said Willis.

Customers book their mechanic using an app or going to their website, getwrench.com. The company can service all makes and models, and do everything from oil changes to brake jobs to major repairs, anywhere. The majority of their visits are residential, with workplace repairs coming in second.

"Any safe space. It's gotta be flat and off the road,” Willis said.

Mechanics like being mobile as well.

“I like to be able to interact with the customer,” said Koehn.

"You get to educate the customer on what was actually wrong with the vehicle -- they don't just drop it off and three days later get it back fixed. Which is kinda nice, a lot of people actually enjoy that because they really know what's being done on their car.”

Wrench is in four cities now: Seattle, Portland, Phoenix and San Diego. The company plans to put car repair on the road up and down the west coast in the future.

At this growing company's downtown Seattle headquarters, it's clear this mix of mechanics and techies is having a pretty good time growing this enterprise and throwing a monkey wrench at traditional car repair.

“It's a great place to work, we have a lot of fun," said Willis.

Evening is your guide to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. Watch it weeknights at 7:30 on KING-TV Ch. 5 or streaming live on KING5.com. Connect with Evening via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Email.

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