Warranty, equipment and care set Family Auto Service apart in La Jolla

Family Auto Service is located at 1027 Virginia Way, La Jolla, in the former Heinz Gietz building.
( / Courtesy Photo)


Family Auto Service’s 3-year 36,000-mile warranty on all parts and labor sets them apart from other auto repair/service centers.

“Most auto repair shops offer just a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty, but ours is a national warranty,” said owner Rob Rowsell. “We’re part of a network of other auto repair shops, so our customers will be taken care of anywhere in the United States.”

Family Auto Service is the go-to place for customers seeking an oil change, smog certificate, brakes, alignment, tune-up or regular scheduled maintenance. Every repair that Family Auto Service does is linked to a CarFax Report that can prove vital for customers when they want to sell their car — a history of all their repairs and maintenance is included in the report.

“The quality of the technicians and parts we use also sets us apart,” Rowsell said. “We use OE (original equipment) specification parts or better.” The company’s high-quality diagnostic equipment is among the best in the repair industry, he said. “Today’s vehicles are highly sophisticated and what used to be the best of the best scan tools and diagnostic equipment is now mediocre; you really have to invest in elite diagnostic tools to keep up with the competition,” Rowsell explained.

Family Auto Service provides a shuttle to transport customers to home or work, and a concierge pick-up and return vehicle service to owners. “We also have a large, sparkling clean waiting room with free Wi-Fi and complimentary coffee and granola snack bars that is like a mini Starbucks, plus a play area for the kids,” he said.

Rowsell said he has been involved in the auto repair/service industry all his life and it’s been his full-time career for 30 years. He grew up learning the industry while working at his father’s shop in Arlington, Mass., and came up in the industry by working as a service advisor for other auto repair facilities for many years.

After his father relocated to El Cajon, Rowsell learned that his father’s associate was selling his shop in Alpine, so Rowsell bought his first auto repair shop 11 years ago. In 2010, he bought his second shop, Bob Bowens Auto Service in La Mesa and opened his third shop, Family Auto Service in July.

“We have a great team, including our general manager Kevin Schuger and six technicians, three service advisors and an office manager,” Rowsell said.

Family Auto Service of La Jolla is at 1027 Virginia Way. Call (858) 260-2000 or visit to learn about specials or schedule an appointment. Hours are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday; 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

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