Tips For Buying Auto Parts Online

The Internet is a wonderful place for buying many things. You will often have access to options that you never knew existed. You will also have many more choices and can often find a better deal on items online than in a brick and mortar store. One area of items that are advantageous to buy online are auto parts. With the ability to search millions of websites and many different stores, you may be much more likely to find the right part for even the most obscure type of vehicle online than in the offline world. You may also find a better price at the same time.

Here are a few tips for buying auto parts online:

Major Stores

Pretty much every major auto parts store has an online version, where you can search their entire nationwide database for parts availability, order the part and have it sent to you wherever you are. It’s highly convenient and makes it easy to compare prices. Some major chains that have sites include, NAPA Online, Advance Auto Parts, Auto Parts Warehouse, AutoZone, CARQUEST, Pep Boys and many more. Nearly all of them offer online search and shopping options. Some of them even offer a low price guarantee on certain parts and provide you with news, information, rebate deals and special online only deals.

Manuals & Auto Repair Information

There are many resources online that may help you install your auto part. Check out 10w40 for manuals and information for many makes and models of vehicles.

Auto Forums

You can find information on your make or model of vehicle as well as ask questions and get answers about repairing and maintaining it. You will also be able to talk with other auto enthusiasts. Some popular auto forums are Automotive Forums, AutoForums, CarForums, Autoforum Universe and the forums at Automotive. You may be able to get advice on where the best place to get parts is for your specific make and model. There are also forums available for specific makers which should also have excellent information on where to get parts.

Books

You can easily order any of the auto repair manuals you need online at Amazon or Barnes & Noble. This may be more convenient for people who don’t have a bookstore or auto parts store near them. The most popular and reliable publishers of auto manuals are Chilton’s and Hayne’s. Buying the manual online, you may be able to save money by comparing prices at numerous book sellers, you can use AddAll to do this.

Auctions

Auction are a great place to search for your auto parts and eBay Motors is where you will want to begin your auction search. Currently there are a staggering 546190 listings on eBay Motors under Car & Truck Parts alone. You will want to drill down to the specific category for your desired part, then try to narrow the search under that category.

More Tips

Make use of the many price comparison search engines, coupon code sites and be sure to watch out for shipping costs. Some sites, such as Autopartswarehouse offer free shipping, so be sure to take advantage of those offers.

In summary, buying auto parts online has many advantages, from better availability, to the ability to compare prices much more easily to the wealth of auto repair and maintenance information at your fingertips.

7 Tips for Minimizing Auto Repairs

We rely on our vehicles to get us where we need to be. This means long hours on the road and lots of wear and tear on out vehicles – so by rights, auto repair services must be a part of our anticipated expenses. However, these vehicle repairs don’t have to a constant part of life. There are a number of proactive things we can do to keep the time spent at the mechanic’s shop to a minimum.

If you have never considered being proactive about auto maintenance, then now is the time to do so. Better yet, you don’t have to be an auto repair service specialist or have a huge garage full of tools to do these simple tasks. Rather, just some basic knowledge and tools will suffice. Let’s get started.

Tips for Minimizing Auto Repairs

1. Read the manual. Your vehicle manual will tell you things like how often to change the oil, what to watch for in how your engine is running and many other useful facts. Knowing and following them will save you a great deal of aggravation.

2. As soon as your engine light comes on, take it in for a diagnostic check. Taking care of small problems will prevent larger more costly ones.

3. Change the oil, add water, maintain the anti-freeze and keep up with any other liquids that need to be added to the car. This will keep its performance better and minimize risk of damage to other parts of the vehicle.

4. Keep your tires at the correct weight and amount of air. This information will be listed in your owner’s manual. Also, be sure to get them rotated as recommended. Failing to do any of this can result in a blowout.

5. Pay attention when you drive. Watch out for items on the road that can damage the wheels, or kick up into the workings of your vehicle.

6. Get your transmission serviced. Talk to the people who change the oil to find out how often this is recommended for your particular vehicle.

7. If you notice unusual sounds being made by your vehicle while you are driving, or if it seems to be shaking unnecessarily, take it in for a checkup. It’s always best to be told it is nothing to stress over than to ignore the sounds/shaking and find out there was serious problem or repair that could have been prevented.

When you take the time to maintain your vehicles, then you can minimize the time and money spent on auto repair services. To learn additional ways to get more out of your particular vehicle(s) talk to a local auto repair service team today.

Tips For Finding Clients For an Auto Detailing Business

Finding new clients for your detailing business is an ongoing process. Having business cards and fliers is the first thing you will want to have on hand when you are getting started. Asking your friends to hand them out to people they know with high end cars will begin to get the word out.

Most cities have business networking groups that meet once a week. These groups will have one person from any given industry allowed in the group. Find one with no membership fees or as low as possible. You will most likely want to find one that does a breakfast meeting rather than a lunch meeting so as not to interfere with your schedule. These other industry professionals will most likely try out your service and if they are happy with you they will enjoy sending you a lot of referrals. This method is capable of building up a list of Realtors, Lawyers, and other successful industry leaders who need your service.

Golf and Country clubs may allow you to come on the weekends and offer your service to their memberships. Many times you will not have to share any of the money you earn, as they are just happy to offer a service to keep the members happy.

Professional office complexes are great for finding high end cars that you would want as clients. Walk through the lot and place a business card on the drivers side window in between the weatherstrip and the glass. Even if the car is clean they may call you the next time it is dirty.

You can go into these offices if you are clean and not sweaty for the purpose of speaking to the front desk receptionist and asking if you could leave a flier that explains the services you offer. They may have to get approval from an office manager first but it is possible that they will want to have you come out on a set day of the week and provide multiple cars for you to detail at one time. It is to your benefit to do as many cars as you can at one location in order to limit the time spent on the road in between jobs.

Just being out and doing work will cause people to stop and want to inquire about your service. Always have some cards ready to hand out and ask them for a phone number you can contact them at when you are not working. You want to let them know that as a client of yours their car will get priority service too and that you cannot lose focus on the car you are currently doing at the moment. This way you won’t get into any long conversations while the soap is drying and making your job harder after they have left.

Auto Detailing Tips and Tricks of the Trade

When it comes to cleaning your car there are those who believe only they can do the job right. Others simply don’t want to entrust their vehicle to an outside company. Alternatively, some people simply want to thoroughly understand the detailing process before entering into an agreement. Whatever the reason, here we will review the entire detailing process including various tips and tricks picked up from the professionals who make auto detailing their business.

The interior of the car is usually the biggest part of any detailing project. Professionals usually remove the seats in order to gain full access to the interior carpet, side panels and other crevices. Floor mats should also be removed and cleaned separately using cleansers designed to clean the plastic and carpet combination without harming them. Windows should initially be lowered a bit in order to clean them right up to and including the edge. Once the top edge is cleaned and dried the window can be rolled up and cleaned the rest of the way. It’s important to remember that not all cleaners are formulated the same and window cleaners can sometimes fog plastic. For side panels and other plastic covers use a nonabrasive plastic cleanser and be sure it is thoroughly rinsed and dried. The carpet should be cleaned thoroughly as well and any stains should be removed with the help of carpet cleaning techniques often used within the home. Many stains don’t stand a chance against simple home ingredients such as vinegar or soapy water and these home remedies have been used for generations. Always be sure to spot test an inconspicuous area of the carpet to ensure the fibers won’t react badly to whatever method you choose. Once the inside has been cleaned, rinsed and dried be sure to replace seats, taking special care to re-secure them and reconnect any wires that assist in automatic seat positioning.

The engine bay of your car is another area auto detailers spend a great deal on time on. De-greasers will remove any soot, grease or residue from the interior top of your hood. These chemicals are strong and protective gloves should always be worn when working with them. Drape wet towels along all exposed areas where there’s a chance that chemicals may drip in order to preserve paint work. Any areas which hold computer boards or sensitive electronic equipment should be treated separately and should never be cleaned with any sort of cleanser. Simply wipe them clean with a clean cloth and do not touch the circuitry directly.

The exterior of the car is usually saved for last as it requires a great deal of attention and time. The front bumper, wheel wells, side step areas and back bumper should all be cleaned separately and any chrome should be polished. The entire car should be washed, waxed and examined for debris. Many car detailing companies include a the use of a special putty which picks up debris and dirt often missed by conventional cleaning. This kind of cleaning putty or clay can be found through wholesalers servicing the auto industry or through high end auto shops.

Professional auto detailing companies offer an exhaustive range of services performed by highly trained staff members in order to ensure a full and proper cleaning. The cost of auto detailing not only covers the specialized chemicals and equipment used but also the knowledge and experience of the staff. While many car owners may feel that only they can clean their cars properly, the fact of the matter is auto detailers have been working at honing their skills and perfecting their craft for many years. If you have any reservations about hiring a professional check out local car clubs and user reviews online to find the best service for the best price.

Auto Detailing Businesses – Surviving During a Recession Considered

Well, before I retired, I was in the franchising business, in the automotive service sector. One thing I had noticed over the years was that the economy was either doing well, or doing poorly. That is to say there was an expansion period or a contraction period, growth or recession. One thing I can remember is many of our franchisees complained when the economy was bad as it was hard for them to make money. In reality, by simply adjusting your menu and the types of services you offer it is rather easy to switch over to a low-cost high-volume business model and actually make more money during a recession. Okay so let’s talk shall we?

Indeed, I realize that is a very bold statement, but I can tell you from experience and real life observations that it is indeed true. All too often the wealthier crowd stops wishing to pay for $150 auto details, and the middle class finds other options, perhaps even doing their own car once in a while. One thing I can say that never goes out of style is the five dollar exterior car wash. You might say that’s crazy, washing a car for only five dollars. Nevertheless, during a recession, there will be plenty of business at that price point. Better yet, it’s not too difficult to do upwards of 100 cars per day in office building parking lots.

Why do I mention this now you ask? Well, our economic growth has only been about 1.7% in 2012, and I imagine in 2013 we will go back into a recession, and have a negative growth rate. This means that there will be fewer people with jobs, and less money floating around in the economy. It also means that many of your competitors will go out of business, and who knows, if you don’t follow my advice here you might as well. Of course, that leaves more business for those who are still in business because they were not too proud to try something new.

You don’t have to ruin your prestige or your auto detailing branding. You can simply call the new line of services that you do; mobile car washing. The rest of the time you can do auto detailing at the higher price. This way you are now offering two types of services, even though the auto detailing business will be much less than it was during the good economic times.

I think what you will also find out is that by having hundreds and hundreds of mobile car wash customers with significant volume, that through those economies of scale you will find more people willing to get a detail than you ever had in the past. Yes, you may have to lower the price of your full detail as well, but you should be able to stay in business throughout the recession without any problem. Please consider all this and think on it.