Get Your Motor Running
County Line Engine Puts Customer Satisfaction First
Jonas Yoder worked in a factory for several years and decided he wanted to learn more about engines, so he began tinkering during his downtime at home. That hobby has developed into a successful repair business that Yoder manages with the help of his three sons.
County Line Engine is a long-established repair and equipment sales business in Ligonier. Yoder bought the business in 2006, and marked 14 years as the sole proprietor in August. Originally, the business started in the 1970s and was passed on through multiple generations in the same family. If that happens within the Yoder family, Yoder would be pleased.
Yoder and his wife Martha married on September 11, 1997. The couple has three sons and four daughters. Their children range in age from 10 to 22.
“My boys are getting older,” Yoder says. “Any child should learn how to work. We get to work together, and this is a good business to be in.”
He starts his boys off with simple tasks, such as stocking the shelves. He gives them their own tools and work bench, and they learn by a tried-and-true, hands-on approach.
“My 14-year-old can already do a lot of minor repairs,” Yoder says. “They have grown up in this work.”
A business made up entirely of family members does have its drawbacks. It means the shop closes when the family attends reunions or other family functions.
County Line Engine sells outdoor power equipment such as leaf blowers, mowers, and a variety of equipment with small engines. Yoder handles repairs on this same type of equipment.
Yoder says the type of repair work and equipment offered at the shop varies by season. In the spring lawnmowers come into the shop, and he sees more snowblowers and chainsaws in the fall and winter.
As far as equipment sales, every year seems to bring a different buying trend. When brands release new models with new technology or features, people tend to upgrade. Overall, Yoder says sales have been growing, and what is sold is still the same equipment his customers always buy.
County Line Engine is located out in the country, but that has not seemed to hurt Yoder’s customer volume. Most of his customers are from the local area, coming from an approximate 30-mile radius to his shop. He does serve some customers that hail from Chicago, but these customers tend to own lake cottages nearby.
While a main road would mean more exposure to potential customers, Yoder is fine with his location.
“They say a high-traffic area is better for business,” he says. “Enough people find me. I don’t know how I would get the work done if I was on a busy highway. If you do good work and word gets around, people find you.”
Once people walk in his doors, Yoder tries to keep them satisfied. He does this by trying to get equipment repaired and returned as quickly as possible, even in the seasonal rush.
“I try to keep everyone happy,” he says. “We get equipment back as soon as possible and if something is wrong with our work, we take care of that right away.”
Customers looking for outdoor power equipment have the choice of several major brands. Yoder sells the full line of Husqvarna battery-operated and gas mowers, trimmers, leaf blowers and chainsaws. County Line Engine also sells Simplicity lawn and garden tractors and zero-turn mowers, as well as Snapper and Snapper Pro commercial walk-behind mowers. His line of DR Power Equipment products includes brush cutters, leaf blowers, power graders, stump grinders and finishing mowers. He also stocks Yamaha generators and power washers.
Engine brands available include Briggs & Stratton, Kawasaki and more.
Because technology changes and new features are added to the equipment he sells and repairs, Yoder endeavors to stay up to date with changes. These changes are sent out by manufacturers, and he can access information online.
County Line Engine is located at 11400 North 350 West in Ligonier. For more info, call 260-593-2792 or email Yoder at firstname.lastname@example.org.