Okay so, what will the mobile oil change sector look like in 10-years? That’s a decent question, so let’s think on this. First, we see labor costs rising, shortages of qualified technicians, more complicated cars, flex fuels, new lubricants, and hybrids too – all challenge the price point for changing oil services. Not only labor and increased costs due to technology, but also fuel costs too. Consider how much it costs to fill up a van and drive it to all the customers per day.
Not long ago, an acquaintance complimented me on some of my revolutionary strategies used to build up my mobile oil change business. I told him that basically it was an interesting concept to master, but the ROI wasn’t there compared to other businesses I’ve run (mobile car washing and truck cleaning). We both agreed that without completely re-inventing the business model again, which is doable, if one has a desire too, we did, it’s time for another upgrade, no doubt – then making a solid profit will become more and more difficult.
Now then, back in the 90s and turn of the millennium the technology wasn’t quite there at a decent price point to go fully robotic, I believe we are on the cusp of that potential reality now – so all that is about to change from all my reading and study. How would a mobile robotic oil changing system work?
Well, I have some ideas on how to tag the dipsticks with reflective tape with an active matrix RFID chip on them, and how to put a plastic piece which will mold itself (material memory) to the perimeter of the oil cap hole also with an RFID chip inside, thus the robot filling the oil knows exactly where to put the oil. If you have regular customers you could make a system where those RFID chips stay there, like bar codes and sensors for your robotic oil changer next time – a few dollars each at first, then very cheap on a bulk scale, light weight too, so you could use them on weight sensitive objects, like aircraft, dirigibles, or space craft (for other things).
Even as band aid skin patches for robotic medical surgery tools, I bet they already have this for that application. You just borrow what works from all the other industries and make it, patent it, sell it, or use it for your own service robots. Well, those are some of my thoughts on the future of this sector, once again – just thinking out loud here. Please consider all this and think on it.