Gaynor’s Automotive expands to fifth Clark County location

Purchase of former Swinehart’s Transmission business allows Gaynor’s Automotive to better serve Clark County residents

VANCOUVER — In June, Gaynor’s Automotive expanded its full automotive repair service to Clark County residents with the addition of its fifth location. The long-time fixture in the area’s auto repair industry added the former Swinehart’s Transmission location in Orchards to its list of locations that have served customers since Tom and Holly Gaynor founded the business in 1986.

Gaynor’s Automotive expands to fifth Clark County location
Gaynor’s Automotive expanded its full automotive repair service to Clark County residents with the addition of its fifth location. The long-time fixture in the area’s auto repair industry added the former Swinehart’s Transmission location in Orchards in June. Photo by Mike Schultz

The additional shop, located at 13218 NE Fourth Plain Blvd. in Vancouver, was purchased thanks to the continued high volume of patronage offered by Gaynor’s Automotive’s loyal customers.

“It is a reflection of the way the community has received our service and put their trust in us for the past 33 years, 34 next month,’’ said Tommy Gaynor, vice president of Gaynor’s Automotive.

Gaynor explained that his respect and appreciation for the Swinehart’s Transmission business, and owner Russ Swinehart, was a big factor in his decision to acquire the new location. Gaynor said Swinehart is retiring after a long and successful career in the industry.

“One big factor was the reputation of the business,’’ Gaynor said. “Russ had operated there for over 40 years and had been a vendor of ours for 25 years.’’

Gaynor also explained that the Orchards location fit perfectly in the family of Gaynor’s Automotive full-service repair locations — which includes shops in Downtown Vancouver, Hazel Dell, Salmon Creek and Cascade Park.

“Orchards was one of the areas of the county that we didn’t service well, the Orchards neighborhood,’’ Gaynor said. “That was one area that we had a pretty big void.’’

Gaynor’s Automotive was able to retain the four existing employees at the new location and add three additional staff members. The new location will be similar to the other four businesses, offering nine bays spread over 8,000-square-feet of work space.

“It was an absolute state-of-the-art transmission facility and then we upfitted it with brand new state-of-the-art automotive repair equipment that they didn’t have,’’ said Gaynor, who indicated the five locations will allow Gaynor’s Automotive to serve more than 2,000 customers each month.

Three years ago, Gaynor’s Automotive expanded its Salmon Creek location from four bays to 10. In 2008, the company added its Cascade Park location and Gaynor said further expansion is planned in the future.

Gaynor’s Automotive expands to fifth Clark County location
Gaynor’s Automotive was able to retain the four existing employees at the new Orchards location and add three additional staff members. The new location will be similar to the other four locations, offering nine bays spread over 8,000-square-feet of work space. Photo by Mike Schultz

“We’ve had some opportunities to expand into Portland or Beaverton, but we’ve decided that’s not a move we would like to make yet,’’ Gaynor said. “We’ve looked at some attractive opportunities over there but Clark County is home to us. We’re looking forward to expanding into Camas or Washougal and hopefully Longview and Kelso.’’

One of the reasons for the success that Gaynor’s Automotive has enjoyed is that the company has been able to adapt to changes in the automotive technology industry. For example, last year Gaynor’s Automotive purchased a new shuttle fleet of Toyota Prius vehicles to replace its existing shuttle fleet and Gaynor sent half of his tech crew to Seattle for hybrid and electric vehicle training while also making a sizeable investment in specialty equipment for each of the Gaynor’s Automotive locations.

Gaynor’s Automotive also provides fleet services to some of the top companies in the area including Comcast, Charter Communications, AT&T and PeaceHealth Southwest.

To schedule an appointment, or for more information, including phone numbers and addresses of the five Gaynor’s Automotive locations, visit www.gaynors.com.

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About The Author

Ken Vance got his start in the newspaper industry in 1987 as a reporter at The Columbian Newspaper in Vancouver. Vance graduated from Stevenson High School in Stevenson, WA, and attended Clark College in Vancouver. He worked for The Columbian from 1987-2001. He was most recently a staff member of The Reflector Newspaper in Battle Ground, where he served as editor since 2010 and reporter since 2007. Vance’s work in the newspaper industry has won him multiple awards, including a first place award from the Society of Professional Journalists for in-depth reporting.

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