Archive for February, 2013

What to Look for When Buying a Used Car

Friday, February 15th, 2013

After you donate your vehicle to Goodwill, you will probably be in the market for a new or used car. Buying a used car can be a great option for people looking to get a good deal on a vehicle; however, buying a used car can be tricky.

Here are some tips for you to follow when you’re shopping for a car to replace the one you donated:

  • Don’t be too Picky: If you have a specific car in mind, it may be a good idea to research some vehicles that are similar to include in your searches. Expanding your search can help you find an even better deal.
  • Ask for the VIN Before you Buy: If you have the VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) for the vehicle you are thinking about purchasing, you will have the chance to check up on its vehicle history before you make a decision to buy it. Some things you can find out are the true mileage, if the vehicle has a salvage/rebuilt title or if it has been labeled a “lemon” by any previous owner.
  • Read Before Signing: Sometimes dealers may lead you to believe that you are purchasing a vehicle but actually give you documents for leasing the vehicle. Therefore, it is very important to read any and all documents very thoroughly before signing anything.
  • Have a Mechanic Inspect the Car: An honest dealer or private party selling their vehicle should have no problem allowing you to have your mechanic inspect the vehicle at your expense. Having your mechanic inspect the vehicle for $50-100 will probably be well worth your while before you make a purchase just to be sure that you don’t end up having to make unexpected repairs shortly after you purchase the car.

Now that you are ready to start shopping for your next used vehicle, you can begin the vehicle donation process right now by clicking the blue donate button below. To learn more about donating a vehicle, click here.


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Bad Transmission

Thursday, February 14th, 2013

People donate vehicle to Goodwill for many different reasons such as a broken timing chain or a blown head gasket. Another common reason to donate a car to Goodwill is a bad transmission.

The transmission is the mechanism in a vehicle that facilitates gear shifting. There are 2 main types of transmissions: manual and automatic. The main difference between the two is that a manual transmission is operated by the driver whereas an automatic transmission selects gears automatically.

  • Manual Transmission: Vehicles with a manual transmission, also sometimes known as a 4 or 5- speed, are typically considered more difficult to drive than vehicles with an automatic transmission. The reason for this is that the operator of a vehicle with a manual transmission needs to manually shift gears using a clutch and a stick shift. However, a manual transmission could save you money in the long run because it reduces gas mileage and is less expensive to fix. Generally, the clutch will need to be replaced.
  • Automatic Transmission: Vehicles with an automatic transmission are easier to drive because the driver does not need to worry about choosing the correct gear or shifting manually. Instead, there is a part built into the engine that selects the appropriate gears automatically. Having an automatic transmission is very convenient; however, when it breaks it is a very expensive part to repair. The average cost of repairing or replacing a bad transmission is ranges from $1800-$3500. No transmission lasts forever, but they typically last far beyond 100,000 miles. Therefore, once a vehicle’s transmission goes out, most people are not willing to pay for the expensive repair on such an old vehicle.

Has your transmission gone bad? Give us a call at 866-492-2770 to donate your vehicle to Goodwill and we will be happy to come tow it away free of charge to you. Plus, when you donate to Goodwill, we will give you all the documentation you will need for a great tax deduction.


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Share a Smile Campaign

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Donating a vehicle is a great way to help support Goodwill’s work in the community. There are also several other great ways to support Goodwill, such donating clothing or shopping at one of their many thrift stores located in the Washington DC Metro Area. Goodwill’s thrift stores are full of bargains on gently used clothing and household items.

Additionally, Goodwill stores also are participating in the “Share a Smile” campaign to help raise additional funds for their job training and employment programs. The Share a Smile campaign is a campaign that allows thrift store customers to purchase a “Smiling G” for just $1 at the time of their purchase.

The Share a Smile Campaign is a great way for Goodwill to reach out to the community for donations. In just two weeks this past December, Goodwill sold a record-breaking 5,100 smiles. Before those two weeks, Goodwill stores had sold $2,418 worth of smiles, adding up to a total of $7,518! So, even though a $1 purchase of a Smiling G may seem like a very small contribution, it actually makes a big difference when so many generous Goodwill supporters chip in.

Goodwill’s mission is to transform lives and communities through the power of education and employment, and the money from the Share a Smile campaign will help support Goodwill of Greater Washington in carrying out their mission. Goodwill’s services include Job Placement and Retention, Career and Life Skills Training, and a variety of disability services to help those with disabilities gain steady employment. Thanks to all the generous Goodwill shoppers who contributed to the campaign!

If you are looking for another way to support Goodwill now that the Share a Smile campaign has ended, you should consider making a car donation. The car donation process is very quick and easy. Click the blue donate button below to make your donation to Goodwill today!


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