Brown’s Auto Salvage supports community in a big way
By Tim Brown
More than just recycling, Brown’s Auto Salvage also plays a versatile role in supporting an ever-expanding list of community charities
In 1975, I started Brown’s Auto Salvage with my father, James ‘Lawson’ Brown in Wilmot N.S. in the Annapolis Valley. We started the business with an old truck and a rope and no clue what we were doing – but loving every minute of it.
Dad passed in 1998 and I made the decision to keep the business going and expand. In 2001 a new office and dismantling bays were built. Our learning curves have been tough – we burned to the ground… twice! First in 2002, followed by another fire in 2011. This taught us a lot about safe recycling practices. Each time we had to start from scratch, and even had our office out of an old car for awhile!
We operate on 15 acres and have a three-bay dismantling shop with two more bays being added in the near future. It seems we are always adding additional warehouse space to house more inventory. We have two choices in our future – invest and expand or stay small. Today we have 21 employees, and process about 800-to-1000 end-of-life vehicles per year. We also fully dismantle about 40% of those every year.
Brown’s Auto Service Centre opened in 2015 to install our parts and help our community with affordable services. What started as a rundown old gas station, we were able to renovate into a two-bay service centre with office space. In 2020 we added a third bay. Today, we have three red seal mechanics and a mechanic apprentice who specializes in body work.
There is very little in our community we have not been involved in. We support our community church, sport teams (and individuals) in hockey, baseball, bowling, golf, local race track and approximately eight race cars yearly, along with many different local charities, organizations and families.
Without the help of our association – The Auto Recycling Association of Atlantic Canada–we would not be where we are today. The meetings are a big highlight of our year to learn and see all the other businesses. A huge thank you to Luke from Car-Part – without him, we would not have taken the steps to expand and grow our business online, and we might still be seen as a “junk yard.”
Family is big at Brown’s, even today – Christopher (son) joined over 25 years ago; Candice (daughter) joined eight years ago; and Kailey (youngest daughter) joined the service centre in 2022.
Auto recycling has been good to me and my family and we enjoy serving the community every day.
Leave a Reply