“Everything Auto” Blog – You’ve Got Questions, We’ve Got Answers

Our focus is to keep you and your family safe on the road. We employ the most qualified people who will accurately determine your needs, clearly communicate the best solutions and execute all work with integrity.

When you have questions, please use us as a trusted resource for honest information. We will provide high-quality auto repair work and trusted pre-owned auto sales, we love this stuff so much we even want to blog about it!

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Why You Should Buy From a Used Car Dealership With a Service Center

Do you have a kid going back to college at the end of the summer? A high schooler who needs transportation for their part time job? When it’s time to find a used car, especially for a teen or young adult, safety and reliability are two of the most important factors in the buying decision. Cost is also a factor and that usually means opting for a used car. With all this in mind, we recommend buying a car from a dealership that also services cars.

Most auto mechanics who also sell cars on their lot vet out the vehicles that come in, inspecting them for problems (both existing and potential) and get to know their pros and cons. When you purchase at a mechanic/dealership, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision.

We hear a lot about “buying local,” and for good reason. Buying a used car from a local dealership with a service center is one of the smartest things you can do. You get the personal service from auto technicians who know your car because their team members sold it to you. The team here at American Pride Automotive loves it when customers who have bought cars from us bring them back for routine maintenance and repair. It gives us a chance to check in with the customer and holds us accountable for the vehicles we sell.

If you’re in the market for a used car, take a look at American Pride’s online inventory or stop in to any of our three locations in Toano, Newport News or Yorktown.  Every car on our lot has been inspected and screened for quality so that you can feel confident about buying a trustworthy used vehicle.

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Should I Sell My Car to a Dealer?

There are many reasons to sell a car and just as many ways to go about selling it. One option that’s become increasingly popular in recent years is selling the vehicle directly to a dealer, often for cash. It’s a similar alternative to the traditional auto trade-in but can help make the most of the seller’s time and money. Is this the path for you? Perhaps. Consider these thoughts before selling your car to a dealer.

  • It’s important to shop around.  You deserve the best cash return on your car, so don’t just go with the first dealer’s offer! Get a few appraisals and don’t be afraid to negotiate the figure.
  • Be real about the condition of the vehicle. If your car is a clunker, it’s probably a good idea to let the dealer give you cash instead of trying to offer it as a trade-in. If the vehicle is newer, with lower mileage and in good condition, you may be better off trading it in for something you like better.
  • Respect your own time. Selling a car to a private party is a lot of work. Between listing the vehicle on various websites, responding to potential buyers (some qualified…others not so much), meeting with those potential buyers, you’ve already lost a great deal of time and money.
  • Safety first. Like we’ve written about before, selling a car to a private buyer can be risky. Listing directories like Craigslist have developed a bit of an unsafe reputation. If you are meeting potential buyers, we recommend bringing another person along and doing so in a public place.

So to answer your question, selling a car to a dealer for cash is often a great idea! The key is choosing an auto dealer that has your best interests at heart. American Pride Automotive will buy your car for cash and give you the best deal we can. Let us do the hard work for you. Schedule an appraisal today at your nearest location (Williamsburg, Yorktown, or Toano).

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Memorial Day Weekend Hours

Instagram style row of US flags for Memorial Day, 4th of July, Veteran's Day

“We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.” (Monia Michael)

All American Pride locations will close for the three day weekend, we will re-open our doors on Tuesday morning…the coffee will be hot and smiles large.

To all those who have served – Thank You!

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April is National Car Care Month

Your vehicle does more than get you from point A to point B. It keeps you safe on the road, survives the crazy Virginia weather, helps you get to work on time, and makes relaxing road trips possible. Show your car a little love this April in honor of National Car Care month by coming to American Pride for a repair or maintenance appointment.

Take advantage of our Saturday hours at the American Pride Automotive Williamsburg and Yorktown locations by making an appointment for an oil change, auto AC recharge, Virginia state inspection, or engine tuneup. Our experienced auto technicians are here for you.

In the meantime, celebrate national car care month by reading a few of our past car care tips:

3 Most Common Causes of Transmission Problems

My Engine Is Smoking…What Do I Do? 

Top 10 Ways to Save on Gas this Summer

Most Common Reasons for the Check Engine Light

“My car’s A/C is blowing hot air!” The Everything Auto Blog: Automotive Air Conditioning Series Part 1 

Call, contact or visit any of our three locations to make an appointment.

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The Hidden Costs of Selling Your Car Yourself

No matter how well our vehicles serve us, there comes a time in every car’s life when it’s time to sell (or salvage). If the car is in sufficiently good condition to sell, vehicle owners have a number of options in front of them–some of which are better than others. Some choose to trade the car in at a dealership while others try to sell it privately with the help of websites like Craigslist and other local listing resources. Selling a car yourself may seem like the easier and more lucrative option, but you may want to think twice and consider other paths.

Private sale of a vehicle requires a lot of work up front on the part of the car owner, but most people assume that the end payoff will be worth it. The challenge is that there are a few extra costs associated with this method–and not all of them actually involve money.

Time

Between cleaning and detailing the vehicle, taking quality photos, deciding on a reasonable sale price, listing it on multiple sites and classifieds, and taking time out of the week to meet with interested buyers, selling a car yourself is time consuming. You also aren’t guaranteed that all your hard work will pay off (not all buyers are particularly qualified).

Repair & Maintenance Costs

Older cars almost always need some maintenance and repair before they are ready to sell. This means extra investment on your part that may or may not pay for itself after the sale.

Safety

Did you know that nationally police stations are now offering “safe zones” for Craigslist-type transactions to take place in order to prevent incidents with dangerous, deceptive people? If you do choose to sell privately, consider bringing along at least one other person to all meetings and doing so in a public place.

So if you don’t want to sell your car yourself, what are your other options?

  • Trade in: If you’re in the market for a new vehicle and your existing car is in sufficiently good condition, most dealerships are willing to work out a trade-in deal. One of the downsides to this method is that you are limited to the vehicle selection on the lot.
  • Consignment: Perhaps the easiest and most lucrative way to sell your car, selling via consignment involves a dealership giving you cash for your car (no trade-in necessary) and them putting it on the market for you. In this case, once the dealership buys the car from you, you aren’t responsible for repairs or private financial transactions. You just get to walk out with cash.

If you want money for a vehicle in good condition, bring it to any of our three American Pride Automotive locations to request a valuation. Letting us sell your car will save you time, money and peace of mind. American Pride also offers trade-in options if that option is a better fit. You trust us to service your vehicle; we’ll make sure it goes to a good home, too. Learn more about how to sell us your car and get cash in your pocket here.

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Selling Your Car FAQs

If you’re interested in selling us your car, these Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) will help you understand the process and your options.

What Do you Do With my Car?

Once we have given you cash for your car, we fix any issues, perform any needed maintenance, detail the car and often install upgraded items such as new tires.  We then sell your car through our auto sales division.  Because we do the repairs ourselves, we are able to sell your car for a fair price and offer a warranty to the new buyer. Continue reading

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Ways to Love Your Car This Valentine’s Day

Red paper shaped heart on the car window

In honor of Valentine’s Day, we here at American Pride Automative want to offer a few ideas for how to show your car some love and appreciation that will help keep it in good condition for years to come.

Get an Oil Change

We may sound like a broken record, but it can’t be said enough: regular oil changes done by a professional mechanic are critical to the health of a vehicle. Dirty oil=an engine that cannot lubricate itself and will eventually fail. Don’t worry if you miss your scheduled mileage marker by a small margin, but neglecting it for too long can lead to bad consequences.

Wash the Car

As car owners, we sometimes forget that the exteriors  and interiors of vehicles need regular maintenance, too. This comes in the form of periodic car washes, using a sun shade to prevent fading of cloth and leather, and twice annual waxing.

Get an Alignment

Over time, bumps, potholes and day-to-day driving knock a vehicle’s suspension system out of whack. If your steering wheel seems to pull to the left or the right, or the ride seems bumpier than usual, schedule a wheel alignment at American Pride. This will help correct those problems and help your tires last longer.

Go for a Drive

One of life’s greatest pleasures is hopping in the car for a long, leisurely drive. A vehicle is something to be thankful for and we hope that you take the time to enjoy yours this weekend and all year. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Contact American Pride Automotive for all your auto repair, maintenance, Virginia state inspection, and car buying needs. We have three convenient locations in Toano, Yorktown and Williamsburg. Schedule an appointment today. 

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Thank You For Getting Your Car Inspected at American Pride!

As part of the State Inspections for Our Community program, we’ve spent the last few months raising money for Hospice House and Support Care of Williamsburg. Our staff has a soft spot for this organization and we are honored to work with them to help bring comfort and peace to families facing end-of-life decisions. This is the second (and hopefully not last) time Hospice House has been our Community Star.  We’re proud to have raised $6,000 and we have YOU to thank!

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Stay tuned for the announcement of our next Community Star!

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What is the Difference Between Used, Rebuilt and Remanufactured Transmissions & Engines?

Lately you’ve noticed that your vehicle is behaving strangely–shaking, slow to change gears, or simply not not starting at all. You take it to the mechanic and get the news no car owner ever wants to hear: It’s time to replace the engine, transmission, or another critical (costly) component like a differential or transfer case.

Faced with the high price tag of replacing these parts with factory-new equipment, many people would rather get rid of the car entirely. What these same people don’t know is that there are alternatives. The three main ones (aside from brand new) are used, rebuilt and manufactured components. To some these options may sound quite similar, but the truth is that they provide very different benefits.

Used

This is the lowest cost option for those who need a new engine, transmission, or other important vehicle part. It is also the riskiest. Used components are usually sourced from junkyards and in most cases not cleaned or thoroughly inspected. There is a higher likelihood that it is a high-mileage part and/or has been involved in an accident.

Rebuilt

A rebuilt engine or transmission is made up of parts that have been reconditioned or refurbished. This reconditioning involves taking the unit apart, cleaning it and replacing worn or damaged aspects. Unlike used parts, rebuilt parts are generally inspected and tested, but their quality varies widely and warranties are typically short-term. That being said, if your budget constraints are tight, rebuilt equipment may be the safest, most affordable option.

Remanufactured

If you aren’t crazy about buying new but still want to invest in quality, then remanufactured parts may be for you. All components are built precisely to manufacturer specifications and quality standards and thoroughly tested. At American Pride, we install JASPER remanufactured transmissions, engines, transfer cases and differentials because of their superior craftsmanship and long-term warranties (most parts carry a 3 year/100,000 mile warranty).

When making a big vehicle decision like whether and how to replace a major component, be sure to get at least two opinions from auto mechanics you trust. If you’re unsure of what to do about your car or truck and live in the Williamsburg, Yorktown, or Toano area, call the pros at American Pride. No matter what kind of replacement part you choose, we can help guide you and get you the best value for your money.

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Happy Holidays From Our Family to Yours

christmas-apa

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