By Tom Bostock

Who is John Erb? Isn’t he the iconic fixture in car, truck, and RV maintenance and repair service, synonymous with automotive excellence in northern Hillsborough County and the Carrollwood area? Is that who John Erb is? Or is he the Santa lookalike whom deserving charities can always count on to don his jolly old red and white fur trimmed elf costume to the delight of the wide-eyed children? There is a rumor going around that John hides his merry elves somewhere in his service center and the North Pole is closer than we think. Hmm. As a responsible reporter, I’ll have to look into that! 

     Could it be the friend who borrowed the saying “It’s nice to be nice to nice people” to honor his late friend, Patrick Keenan, the way John and his staff have done business since 1971? Maybe it’s the man whose barbecued chicken and beef are a mainstay at community functions in the Northdale area. Could he be that friendly, outgoing presence who graces the OWL Club (Older, Wiser, Lively Seniors) who meet each month at the Northdale Civic Association?

     The answer is obvious; the truth is John is all of that and much more! A contradiction in terms, John says that “I don’t like cars. I like people!” His written promise, found on Angi’s List, is typical of what new and repeat customers can expect to receive during their visit to John Erb’s Car, Truck, and RV Service Center, at 16133 N. Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa, FL 33618 

     Whether it is an oil change, a simple tune-up, or as complicated as a complete engine overall, John and his experienced, certified, professionals can do it all with quality parts and experienced services. 

     “We strive for the highest standards in automotive repairs and will provide you with the best integrity in the business. To perform high-quality repair service at a fair and just price. To use only proven merchandise of high quality distributed by reputable firms. To employ the best-skilled technicians obtainable. To furnish an itemized invoice for fairly priced parts and services that clearly identifies any used or re-manufactured parts. Replaced parts may be inspected upon request. To have a sense of personal obligation to each customer.” That may seem like an improbable promise, but for John and his professional staff, it is just their normal way of doing business. 

          Originally from Plainview, Long Island, New York, John had an advantage over other kids his age after they moved to Florida, where his father operated a Gulf service station on the corner of Kennedy and Dale Mabry. He had a good idea of what he wanted to do, although he didn’t pursue it until he decided against two other options, becoming either a doctor or joining the police department. 

     While still in grade school, he was already filling up his father’s customers’ tires with air. By 12, he was changing their tires. Although he was a fully certified mechanic, by the time he was 21, John was 25 before he finally made servicing customer cars his chosen career path. Many, many satisfied, repeat customers of Erb’s Car, Truck and RV service center in the Carrollwood area are glad he did!

     Do you want to know what others think about John’s service? In our interview, John remarked, “the only thing my team and I can control is our effort.” Countless satisfied customers from across the Tampa Bay area can attest to how well they achieve that promise. Read what some of his local customers, in their unsolicited testimonials, had to say that resulted in his 4.3-star rating with the Better Business Bureau with over 200+ online reviews:

Gina W. 

“By far the best mechanic, most honest, caring person. I will NEVER use anybody else again!!”

Chuck M. 

“Thanks, John, great job on Robin Honda your choice of tires & all the work done was awesome.”

Tommy L. 

“John and his staff know their business! Doesn’t matter what make or model of your vehicle they will 

diagnosis and fix your problems! I have relied on John and his staff to service every one of my vehicles no 

matter what the dealership said. They have saved us hundreds of dollars from the dealer when we needed 

their service. From tires to brakes and wheel alignments when it shakes, from engine noises and coolant 

leaks, they can do it all and keep you on the road 7 days a week! That’s from his catchy little commercial! 

Thanks, John for putting the trust back in your profession!”

     John and his team believe in establishing a preventative safety program for every vehicle 

they service that follows your manufacturer’s recommend guidelines for the maintenance of 

that vehicle to keep it running at peak efficiency. 

     Did you know that John Erb’s Car, Truck and RV services offers a brake warranty that 

provides unique coverage, as John says, “a health program for your car’s hydraulic brake 

system?” If John’s team properly flushes your brakes with quality Valvoline fluid every 30,000 

miles, Valvoline provides a limited coverage warranty to those brakes at no cost to you, backed 

by Technet as long as you continue with the preventive service. This is just one more way they 

can save you thousands of dollars in brake repair bills.   

     Although Erb’s Service Center is a Goodyear distributor, all other tire manufacturers are 

available to them. His team wants to do more than just selling you a tire. They ask the 

questions that determine what tire is right for your car. Are you a person who only drives your 

car around town, or do you routinely travel long distances? It makes a difference which tire you 

select for maximum tire life and smooth ride. In a previous interview, John confirmed, “I can 

get Michelin’s if they want them.”    

     Extending the life of your vehicle is the entire goal at John Erb’s Service Center and the word has gotten around. It isn’t unusual to see cars parked several deep, waiting for John’s crew and their expert servicing. It’s also not unusual to see a Jaguar, parked next to a BMW, Cadillac, or daily driver, each waiting for the same exceptional service at the same reasonable price. 

     With two facilities, a 5700 square foot main building (“his campus”) and a 3400 square foot oil change building, John’s staff is ready to handle all your car, truck, and RV needs. You may have seen his “Oil Frog” tent at the Northdale Fun Fest that John sponsors every year. 

     John’s philanthropic interests vary almost as much as the services his automotive center provides. Long a Silver sponsor of the Egypt Shrine Circus, he also supports The Children’s Home, schools in Haiti, and the Humane Society. 

     There are many ways to repair and maintain your car. At John Erb’s Car, Truck, and RV Service Center, there is only one, The RIGHT WAY! Experience it for yourself today. You’ll be glad you did! Call today at 813-908-3333 to make your appointment for service excellence or visit the service center at 16133 North Dale Mabry, Tampa, FL. Take the worry out of your vehicle’s maintenance or repair today!