Tigard Business Spotlight: Tyler’s Automotive

Margaret Ellenson (center) and the friendly staff at Tyler’s Automotive Tigard location.

Family Owned & Operated Since 1996

From helping neighbors with basic brake jobs in the driveway to opening three full-service locations around Washington County, Tyler’s Automotive has expanded multiple times, but it’s never outgrown its family-centric roots.

The Tigard-based business began at home as namesake Tyler Ellenson’s hobby more than two decades ago.

When neighbors who noticed Tyler was always out tinkering with his car started asking for a little help with the brakes or some troubleshooting of an older parent’s car, the mechanic was quick to oblige.

The more he did, the more requests he got.

“After a couple of years, we had cars lined up and down the street in our residential neighborhood here in Tigard,” said Margaret Ellenson, Tyler’s wife and business partner. “I’m sure many people were like, ‘Okay, this is getting a little old,’ trying to get through. But everybody was very supportive in our neighborhood. They were really wonderful.”

Three locations later, Tyler’s still serves some of the original customers.

The Ellenson’s moved operations from the driveway to Main Street in 1993, later adding shops in Wilsonville and Newberg.  

Along the way, their two sons grew from toddlers strapped into backseat car seats to mechanics who help run the company.

The family-owned business now has 22 employees, with 11 mechanics who handle everything from oil changes and brakes to electrical systems, transmissions, and engine replacements.  

“We do a lot of diagnostics. A lot of times, people will bring their troubled car to us because somebody else can’t figure it out,” she said, adding the shop takes pride in the precision and integrity of their work.

But she knows Tyler’s is only a partner in the relationship it takes to keep a car healthy and rolling along for a good long life. The vehicles also need an owner who keeps up with routine maintenance.

With regular care, the odometer on her own favorite vehicle, a 17-year-old GMC Denali, just passed 210,000 miles, and the truck is still going strong.

“If you maintain it and take good care of it, it’s going to take good care of you,” she said. “If you do nothing else to your vehicle, just make sure you maintain its fluids. You need to keep things fresh so the engine can continue to run smoothly.”

Tyler’s Automotive is located at 12485 SW Main St. in Downtown Tigard. Open 8 am – 6 pm Monday-Friday. For locations and information on current specials, visit www.tylersautomotive.com.