Olympia Auto Mall
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Monday, March 30, 2015

Selling a Car? Know Your Options

Thinking about looking for a new set of wheels?  If this is not your first purchase chances are you already have a car that you will need to find a home for either before or during the purchase process.  Here are a few tips on the benefits and drawbacks of each of your options when looking to make the transition.

Four choices- There are basically four options if you decide you need to get rid of your old car. You can either:

Sell it yourself- This option is the most work, but it also tends to create the greatest yield.  Your best bets are the local paper, radio yard sale, or online selling forums such as craigslist.  If you don’t want to deal with the hassle of having strangers call you up and drive your car, this option is not for you

Consignment- You take your car to a dealer and they sell the car for you, taking a portion of the profit and giving you the rest. This is more convenient than the first option, but you will obviously be paying a commission to sell your vehicle.

Trade In- Trade in is basically when a dealer gives you a price for your vehicle and that trade in value is applied to the price of a new or used vehicle that you wish to purchase.  Often, the trade in value is below Kelly Blue Book as the dealer must resell your vehicle. This is, by far, the most convenient option. It is not often the best way to get the most for your old vehicle.

Donate- You may be eligible for a tax deduction that is equal to or slightly lower than the Kelly Blue Book value of your car as long as certain guidelines are met. This is a very nice way of helping others and getting rid of the old car at the same time. Consult your tax advisor to see if this option makes sense for your particular situation.

For this and other tips on how to improve your vehicle for sale visit us on the web at www.olympiaautomall.net .  For the best new or used car dealerships in Tacoma  the Olympia Auto Mall is your premier choice!

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Warranties- What’s Covered and What’s Not

Warranties - they are often a key selling point when buying a car but do you really understand what is covered and what’s not?

Let’s start with the powertrain warranty. Surprisingly most people don’t know what the powertrain does and what car components that includes.  Basically, the powertrain is everything that makes your car move: the engine, transmission, the axels, differentials, drive shaft, and anything else that can be considered part of that overall mechanism.  NOTE: A drivetrain warranty is different from a powertrain warranty.  It’s basically everything mentioned in the powertrain minus the engine and transmission…a very important difference. 

Car WarrantiesThen there’s the “bumper to bumper” warranty.  This is very often part of a car purchase you buy a new vehicle usually lasting three to four years or 36,000 to 50,000 miles, whichever comes first. While this is supposed to be the catch all that covers anything and everything, maintenance and everyday wear and tear items are not included. 

The items typically not covered are items you could easily replace yourself such as car batteries, tires, brakes, rotors, light bulbs, wiper blades, belts, hoses, etc.  Only a couple of items you can’t replace aren’t usually covered such as rusted metal and the systems that control emissions.

Then there is the extended warranty.  The extended warranty usually extends the coverage of the bumper to bumper warranty.  Make sure you consult with an automotive professional you trust to provide the details regarding what your extended warranty does and doesn’t cover. This coverage usually extends your standard warranty an additional two years or for the life of most people’s car loans (5-7 years).  This can work out pretty well because most people wind up purchasing a new vehicle anywhere from 5-7 years. 

All warranties will spell out the details of what is included and what are the exceptions and exclusions. If you are unsure, ask. Since these are part of the purchase of your car, you should understand what they cover. It can save you money and peace of mind.

If you have more questions about warranties look no further than the Olympia Automall.  We have over 12 dealerships representing 21 different vendors with service departments to tend to your needs!  You’ve done your homework, now make the call!  If you are looking for new or used cars Puyallup has to offer come to the Olympia Auto Mall.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Car Bras – Are You Covered?

A car bra is a covering for the front of your vehicle designed to protect the nose of your hood, front bumper, and areas around the grill and front fender.

The front of the car is the place that usually takes the biggest beating from the elements over time.  Rocks, bugs, the elements, and everything else that we manage to run into can damage your car’s front end decreasing its resale value along with its visual appeal.

Car BrasCar bras are usually black.  However, you can custom order bras that can match the color of the vehicle.  Some bras are even clear adhesive strips, serving the same type of protection as the screen cover on your smart phone. Many people like this option as it protects the front end of the car while not detracting or significantly changing the overall look of your car. 

Most manufacturers offer car bras which can be ordered through our service department.  If you would like to learn more about car bras to see if enhancing your vehicle with one is right for you, give us a call or visit our showrooms. 

For the best new and used cars Tacoma Wa has to offer, come to the Olympia Auto Mall.  We’re here to help.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Synthetic Versus Standard Oil- What’s the Difference?

Anyone who has a car has to use oil.  Most people know by now that there are two main types of oil in the marketplace: standard oil and synthetic.  So what’s the difference?  Don’t worry, we’re here to help.
In order to understand different motor oils and what they do we must identify what each one is and why it is important. Simply put, standard motor oil is oil that has been directly derived from natural crude oil.  Synthetic oils are, by definition, substances made by using chemical processes to mimic the real thing. In this case scientists figured out how to synthesis various chemicals to mimic conventional motor oil. 

Synthetic Versus Standard OilSo what about the different labels on oils?  10w-30, 15w-40, and so forth; what do they mean?  To understand different oil ratings we have to get scientific on you.  First, let’s point out the “W” in the room.  W stands for winter, not weight as some might think.  However, weight is a part of the formula. The 10 means that when it’s cold your oil has the viscosity of 10 weight oil and at higher temperatures it has the viscosity of 30 weight oil.

Clear as mud?  Okay, let’s look at this a different way.  Oil is an interesting material, when it gets hotter it gets more viscous (thick, semi-liquid).  When it cools, it gets less viscous.  Think of it as the opposite of water.  Water, when it gets cold becomes more solid and hotter becomes less solid and more like a gas.  Hopefully that cleared things up a bit.

Alright, on to what you came here for.  So what’s the difference?  It really comes down to how often you need to change your oil.  Conventional oil is recommended to be changed every 3,000-5,000 miles.  Synthetics, you could go up to 7,500.  Synthetic oil costs about twice as much.  But many mechanics claim that synthetics will produce less wear on your engine over time prolonging its life and even improving your fuel economy. 

We get asked all the time, “Once you go synthetic can you go back?”  The short answer is yes, oil is compatible no matter whether it is conventional or synthetic.  Switching the rating around on the oil often is not advisable.  Not using the right kind of oil in your car could void the warranty. 
So how do I know what is the right kind of oil to use for my car?  Just look under the hood.  Yep, most cars have the recommended viscosity imprinted to the oil cap.  If not you can either find the right oil recommendation in your owner’s manual or call your friendly service team at the Olympia Automall. Those nice people!

So there you have it.  Don’t you feel smarter?  We thought so!  Whether you choose synthetic or conventional oil our experts at the Olympia Automall are here for you. 

Learn more by checking out the rest of our blog or visit us on the web at www.olympiaautomall.net.   We’ll help you keep your car maintained to maximize its value and utility.  If you’re looking for the best new and used cars Olympia Wa has to offer come to the Olympia Automall.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!


If you have been waiting for the right time to purchase that new car or truck now is the time!  March 12th through 15th Don't wait before these deals are gone!  Click here for details

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Stopping Distance – What You Don’t Know Could Kill You

Shopping Distance
Most of us realize that stopping distance increases when weather conditions change.  What most people don’t know is how dramatically the distance increases.  Let’s take a look at a few examples:

Assuming normal reaction times and conditions here are some numbers to wrap your head around.  If you are going 20 miles per hour it should take you about 40 feet to stop your vehicle right? Yes, that is correct.

What if we double that to 40 miles per hour?  Did you automatically think it should take 80 feet?  WRONG!  The correct answer is nearly 120 feet!  Almost three times the stopping distance!

Now let’s change the conditions:

·         Wet weather- expect the stopping distance to be nearly double!

·         Poor Traction-  stopping distance can increase by over 40%

·         Icy conditions- anticipate as much as 10 times the distance to stop

·         Distractions- believe it or not, because of the delayed reaction time stopping distance can be just as poor as icy conditions!

The best policy: drive defensively when conditions change (not that you should ever drive offensively…).  Slow down!  The whole point of this article is that the largest determinant of stopping distance is the speed that you’re traveling followed by the conditions in which you are traveling.  Be smart, be safe, and stay alive.

If you are searching for new or used car dealerships in Tacoma Wa look no further than the Olympia Auto Mall.  Our expert staff and inventory are second to none! Come by and see us!

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Massive Clearance Event at the Olympia Auto Mall!!!

Massive Clearance Event

If you have been considering a new or used car, now is the time. The Olympia Auto Mall is having an absolutely incredible sale. Over 5,000 vehicles in one convenient location.

March 12th – 15th.

It’s March. It’s Massive. It’s Awesome!!!

Don’t miss out. Get the best deal on your next car at this Massive Clearance Event.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington’s Largest!!!

Ten Car Myths for 2015

Here is our list of ten car myths for 2015! Feel free to comment and share your best car myth!

  1. Why 3k?

·       You know those little stickers that remind you to get your oil changed every 3,000 miles?  Well, most of the time it’s just not true.  Check your car manual, it will often tell you your car can go twice as far before the oil needs changing.

Ten Car Myths for 2015
  1. You have to do your warm up
    • Sorry, warming up your car beforehand regardless of weather conditions actually may do more harm than good.  Yes some systems take time to come online, but you won’t be doing any damage to start and go.  Just go easy on the acceleration.
  2. Adding stuff to your fuel helps prolong engine life
    • Nope.  All that stuff is mainly just hype. 
  3. You need a tune up
    • Sometimes a tune up is in order.  Most of the time it’s time for a mechanic to take you to the cleaners.
  4. The higher the octane, the better my car will perform
    • Myth!  The only time you need premium fuel in your vehicle is if you purchased a car that requires premium only gas.
  5. Radar detection = Invisibility to Police Radar
    • No, no, no.  Really? If you have something attached to your car that blocks police radar chances are high you are guilty of more than just breaking the speed limit.
  6. Tires should be filled to max pressure indicated on the tire
    • Tires are made to handle various car weights.  For the real scoop, check the inside of your car door or your car’s manual for what the tire pressure really should be.
  7. Changing your own oil will save you money
    • Believe it or not, this one is a myth.  Oil change companies have been getting so good at this they can actually change your oil for as much or less than you can yourself.
  8.  The tall tail tailgate
    • In other words, putting your tailgate down on your truck will improve gas mileage.  One word: “NO”. Thanks for playing though…
  9. Larger cars have handle better than smaller ones
    • With the exception of traction control, 4WD, and other traction systems larger cars can actually be more dangerous than smaller ones.  Their height makes them more prone to rollover when cornering.

We hope you enjoyed our top ten list of myths for 2015!  Join the conversation, if you have myths you’ve heard of or want to share your comments.  When it comes to finding the best new and used cars Olympia has to offer come to the Olympia Auto Mall.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

Child Safety- Age and Weight Limits in WA

Child safety is becoming ever increasingly important.  With auto accidents being the number one cause of child death in the country it’s no laughing matter, nor be taken lightly.

Responsibility- Did you know that in the state of Washington, the driver is responsible for making sure everyone in the car is properly secured? 

Infants- infants ages 0-12 months must ride in a rear facing car seats until they have reached 1-2 years old and/or at least 30-35 lbs. 

Toddlers- Once children are over one year old and at least 30 lbs they can sit in the car seat forward facing.

Child Safety
Preschoolers- This age group ranges from 3-5 years old who have outgrown their car seat. Once they outgrow the limits of their car seat they can upgrade to a booster seat.

Youth- Youth ages 6 to 16 years must abide by the laws associated with their age and height group.  For example, children may not ride in the car without a booster seat until they have reached age eight or 4’9”.  Once they reach these limits a “seat belt test” can be used to determine if they are ready. This can be found on the Washington DMV website www.dol.wa.gov .

After the child has reached age 16 or older they fall under normal Washington seat belt and safety laws.

We hope you found this educational.  At the very least, a reminder of the laws that prevail in our great state regarding child safety and what you can do to keep your loved ones as safe as possible.

When it comes to finding the best new and used cars Tacoma has to offer look no further than the Olympia Auto Mall.  We have one thing in mind, to give you the very best value on new and used cars and truck in the great state of Washington.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

What to Do in an Emergency

At some point or another you may or may already have experienced an emergency situation on the road.  For those who have experienced an emergency, and lived to tell the tale, most likely came away from that experience a little wiser and a little more cautious.  For you, this will be a refresher.  For those who have not been in an emergency situation the old adage applies: better a little caution than a great regret.

Emergency AccidentsFirst, assess the situation.  How bad are the circumstances?  Is anyone else hurt?  Are you hurt?  Are you willing to help?  DO NOT attempt to help someone if putting yourself in danger is required to do so.  With today’s emergency medical system, most responders can get to the scene quickly and help others much more effective and efficiently than you can.  We’re not suggesting that you do not help, quite the contrary.  Help within your scope of expertise and do it SAFELY.  If you cannot help someone without putting yourself or others in danger and/or feel you might cause more harm than good, then wait for help to arrive.   

Move off the road quickly and safely (help others do the same).  Once you have assessed the situation and it is safe and appropriate to do so, move your car and, if appropriate, others off the road.  Clearing the road will help take you and others hopefully from sustaining more damage and allow emergency responders to provide the care they are trained to do.

Increase others ability to see you.  Road flares, reflective signs, hazard signals, and any other items you may have to help others see you and avoid obstacles/debris, can help the situation by not causing additional distractions and hazards for other drivers.

Assist authorities- Do whatever you can to help those arriving to give aide.  If someone is hurt, give the responders a detailed rundown of their condition.  Help point them towards those that need immediate medical attention and, when the time is right, with any details about the accident to help authorities do their job effectively.  If you have CPR or medical training, let them know.

On a side note, if you haven’t already done so, now might be a good time to check/update the emergency road kit! For more on this and other tips on how to keep your car on the road and out of trouble trust the experts at the Olympia Automall to be there when you need us.  If you are searching for car dealerships in Tacoma Wa, come to the Olympia Auto Mall.  We’re here to help.

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Your Rearview Mirrors – How to Eliminate Blind Spots

This is an area where few dare to tread.  Because it is so personal!  We all have our favorite place to position our rearview and side mirrors.  Have you ever stopped to think there might be a better way?  Today we are going to explore some options that might help you see a little better and by default, keep you a little safer on the road.

Nearly twenty years ago a paper was written by the Society of Automotive Engineers proposing adjusting side mirrors in such a way as to reveal the blind spots without having to add those little circle mirrors to your side mirrors or purchase any after-market items.

 Rearview Mirrors
These adjustments are made by using your rearview mirror as the centerpiece of the matter.  You adjust your outside mirrors on either side outward such that your viewing angle on either side view mirror just overlaps the outside edges of each side of your rearview mirror.  By doing this you have now expanded your review, literally to the point of being able to see in your blind spots. 

This type of adjustment takes some getting used to as many people often use their side view mirror as a rearview mirror.  Now take a moment to reread that sentence.  Doesn't that seem silly?  Your side view mirrors are for the sides and your rearview mirror is for the rear. Duh (forehead slap)!  

What’s even funnier is that you’re probably going to try this out today and then quickly decide to go back to your previous ways.  That’s fine, we simply thought we would pass on this information to enhance your visual awareness when driving and hopefully increase your safety on the road.  Our job is to deliver the information. Now it’s on you whether or not to do something with it.

For this and other tips on how to improve your vehicle visit us on the web at www.olympiaautomall.net .  The Olympia Auto Mall is your premier choice when looking for the best new or used cars Tacoma has to offer!

The Olympia Auto Mall – Washington's Largest!!!