Phoenix area auto repair shops are seeing more dead batteries, broken air conditioning and overheated engines during July 2023 extreme heat

Dave Martin

Dave Martin inspects a car at his repair shop in Phoenix on July 14, 2023.

Our extreme heat is generating extreme business for Phoenix area auto repair shops.

For 50 years, Dave Martin’s shop has been servicing cars and trucks.

“The last couple weeks have been brutal,” he said.

They’re seeing dead batteries, broken air conditioning and overheated engines. Business is up 50% compared to winter months.

Martin’s crew works in a big garage with swamp coolers, which he says works well when the humidity is low. Employees are shielded from the sun’s rays but there’s really no escaping the heat.

“I buy a bunch of Gatorade, you know, electrolytes just to keep the guys hydrated, buy some sunflower seeds to get some salt in them,” he said. “We just drank a lot of water, a lot of Gatorade and really just tried to tough it out.”

Dave Martin

A technician works on a vehicle at Martin’s Auto Repair in Phoenix on July 14, 2023.

Besides people needing immediate fixes, Martin gets customers hoping to avoid breakdowns.

“We’re getting a lot of that in there — ‘Hey, we’re going on a road trip, we’re taking the family, we’re going to California, San Diego, Colorado’ — wherever they’re going and they want to make sure the vehicle is in tip top shape before they go,” he said.

Martin said batteries in Arizona don’t last as long as cooler climates, so it’s important to have yours tested. Properly inflated tires are critical because underinflation creates excessive heat and stress that can lead to blowouts.

Drivers should carry water and a fully charged cell phone. When the temps are at their peak, so are calls for help — you can be stuck for a while.