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Old 03-09-2015, 07:47 PM   #1
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


I am looking to purchase a quick lube, but one of the selling points is for me to be able to have the waiting room window removed and have a counter placed there where the customer can finish their transaction. I have included some images, of poorly drawn ideas of what I am looking for. The color is no actual indication, it just makes it easier to see. The ironic part about the sign that is currently in the window, the way the quick lube is currently set up the customer has to walk inbetween two pits to have their transaction taken! I want the customer to be able to sit in the waiting room 100% of the time while the car is being taken care of. I donít want them entering the bay at all. Is this feasible? Ive done something similar with making a window a breakfast bar, but this is on brick so I am unsure. I also donít know how this window would be removed.





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Old 03-10-2015, 08:10 AM   #2
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


Window probably keeps the noise away from the waiting area. I think a sliding window would be better with a short counter on braces outside the window.

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Old 03-10-2015, 08:17 AM   #3
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


Noise, dust, fumes, security and temperature are controlled by that glass window. For all of those reasons and a couple I missed, I fully agree with carpdad.
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Old 03-10-2015, 12:29 PM   #4
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


I like the idea of the sliding window with a counter on braces outside the window but I think it would just look cleaner if the window were taken out and it were a countertop that extended to both sides of the waiting room and the bays.

The noise, dust, fumes, and security are non-issues when it comes to a quick lube so that doesn't concern me. As far as temperature, the waiting room actually has a wood burning stove in it that separately heats the waiting room. IMO it wouldn't be a bad thing to let some of the employees enjoy some of that warmth, it wouldn't dramatically drop the temperature in the waiting room.
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Old 03-10-2015, 03:32 PM   #5
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


Wood stove and gasoline, maybe you should run this by building inspection before you blow the place up.
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Old 03-10-2015, 03:43 PM   #6
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


Seems to have been running fine for the past 30 years. Do you know what a quick lube does?
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Old 03-10-2015, 03:49 PM   #7
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


The stove is not directly exposed to fumes as your description makes it sound like a separate room.

For what it is worth you can do a lot of things in a private home that you can not do in a commercial building.
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Old 03-10-2015, 03:58 PM   #8
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


What fumes are you talking about? This is a quick lube.
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Old 03-10-2015, 08:27 PM   #9
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


if you have the room. you would be wise to have the service desk and waiting room all in one room, separate from the work area. even if you had to add on to the building. and noise is an issue.
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Old 03-11-2015, 12:02 PM   #10
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


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Originally Posted by Fix'n it View Post
if you have the room. you would be wise to have the service desk and waiting room all in one room, separate from the work area. even if you had to add on to the building. and noise is an issue.
Well that's what I am attempting to accomplish. The waiting room is separate from the work area, the only problem is the way the current owner of the business has it, the customer has to walk out of the waiting area in between two bays, (which are drop down bays which is more concerning than them walking under lifts) and they take the transaction at the back of the building, then walk back through the bays to get into the waiting room, because the only way to enter the building is through the waiting room.

I can appreciate everyones opinions on how to run a quick lube, how to run a business, and what customers will and will not like, but really all I am looking for is guidance in regards to the removal of the window and the placement of a counter that extends into the waiting room, so the transaction can take place completely in the waiting room.

I assure you noise is a non issue. If you go to a quick lube to change your oil, or have any experience with an oil pump, the only noise made during the changing of the oil is the pump, and that is currently something that either having the window or not having the window will not affect.
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Old 03-13-2015, 08:48 AM   #11
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


Depends what conditions the customers will tolerate. Cars drive in and out and lubes have smell. If your customers were willing to walk into the working area, and the business worked in that area, you have no reason to change things. Why is the owner selling? Liabilities change?
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:16 AM   #12
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


You have cars parked in the garage . Cars contain gasoline.

All that being said in most places I would think your general liability company would insist customers not being allowed in the garage near your pits .
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Old 03-13-2015, 11:47 AM   #13
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


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Originally Posted by carpdad View Post
Depends what conditions the customers will tolerate. Cars drive in and out and lubes have smell. If your customers were willing to walk into the working area, and the business worked in that area, you have no reason to change things. Why is the owner selling? Liabilities change?
Well a few points here - this particular quick lube has been in existence since 1985. The current owner has owned it for 15 years. The way he has been running it, seems like he has been lucky to get away with that particular style. He also used to allow customers to drive themselves into the bays until an elderly lady forgot to stop and ran into him against the back wall. It was extremely lucky that it was him and not one of his employees, or a customer.

The owner is selling because he is retiring and plans to volunteer for his church.

My family owns and operates over 25 quick lubes, so I am not looking for business related advice when it comes to the operation of the store, although I appreciate everyone taking the time to give their opinion and reply to my thread.

Really all I want to know is what it might take to remove that window and put a counter top there. That's why I came to a contractors forum (well originally before I wasn't allowed to register for not being a contractor).
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Old 03-13-2015, 11:51 AM   #14
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Turning a large glass window into a customer counter


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Originally Posted by jimn01 View Post
You have cars parked in the garage . Cars contain gasoline.

All that being said in most places I would think your general liability company would insist customers not being allowed in the garage near your pits .
To your second point - that is what I am trying to address. I don't want customers having to go in between the pits which is how the business is currently run.

I don't understand what your first point is.

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