By Rich White
Car Care Council
More than 100 vehicles were inspected in October during the first-ever consumer vehicle check-up event conducted by the Car Care Council in conjunction with the Northwood University International Auto Show in Midland, MI.
In celebration of October Fall Car Care Month, the council sponsored the event that provided free vehicle check-ups for consumers by professional automotive technicians from Belle Tire and automotive technology students from Delta Community College. Teams inspected 41 items on each vehicle including lights, fluid levels, belts, hoses, tires, filters, battery and other systems and components.
“Clearly, the event provided a large and impressive footprint for the independent automotive aftermarket at the auto show and greatly enhanced the positive image of the service and repair profession,” said Rich White, Car Care Council executive director.
“By all accounts, the event was extremely popular with consumers; most hoping the event will be held again next year,” White continued.
Students enrolled in Northwood’s Automotive Aftermarket Management program and automotive technology students from Delta Community College had the opportunity to help operate the event with the Car Care Council, gaining first-hand experience talking with vehicle owners, assisting with the vehicle inspections and participating in educational demonstrations about preventive maintenance.
Be Car Care Aware Campaign
Each year during National Car Care Month in April and Fall Car Care Month in October, hundreds of consumer vehicle check-up events are hosted by repair shops, parts stores and distributors throughout the country. Car care month celebrations are an ideal opportunity for aftermarket businesses to tie in with national publicity that draws attention to the importance of regular vehicle care and maintenance.
A repair shop can greatly benefit by conducting a free car care event that is educational and promotes goodwill in the community. Vehicle inspection events are not intended to be selling events, but rather non-threatening opportunities for consumers and technicians, shop and store owners and managers to interact. By strengthening community ties and reaching out to prospective customers, shops can increase traffic, sales and service.
Car Care Month celebrations are just one part of the “Be Car Care Aware” campaign. The campaign is a consumer education program about the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair, designed to provide knowledge from all segments of the automotive aftermarket industry.
The campaign’s purpose is two-fold. First, is to provide consumers with unbiased, expert information to help them make better decisions regarding their vehicle maintenance, and offer them tools that make the process easy and intuitive. Second, reversing the trend in unperformed maintenance will aid in conserving energy, improving highway safety, benefit the environment and provide an economic benefit to both consumers and the aftermarket industry.
To learn more about how to host a vehicle check-up event or to learn more about the Car Care Council and the “Be Car Care Aware” campaign, visit www.carcare.org.
Rich White, MAAP, is senior vice president of the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA). He oversees the marketing/communications, membership, education and market research departments, and also is the executive director of the Car Care Council and the “Be Car Care Aware” campaign.