AAMCO Of Norwalk, CT Goes The Extra Mile

Richard and Steve were on a mission for their rowing club on Vashon Island in western Washington. They had located some used boats to purchase located in both Baltimore, MD and Boston, MA. They decided to make the trip across country, since the boats were exactly what they were looking for and wouldn’t break the club’s bank.
They headed out in mid-February in an Acura MDX, hauling a large boat trailer behind them and encountered a lot of bad weather, traffic and unfortunately, major car trouble along the way. Somewhere in Connecticut, they noticed that the A/T Temp light had come on. They stopped to let the engine cool but got back on the road and saw that the light was still on and realized they might have a real issue. At 4:00pm, they stopped at an Acura dealership in Norwalk, CT. That’s when they discovered they would need their transmission rebuilt and were told it could take several days. This was the last thing they wanted to hear. The dealership then referred them to the transmission specialists at AAMCO of Norwalk, CT to do the job.

Steve Grandinetti, the owner of AAMCO of Norwalk, CT, assessed the damage and learned about the predicament these 2 cross country travelers have now found themselves in. Without any hesitation, Steve stepped right up to save the day. He immediately got on the phone and started making calls to solve all of their problems. He was not only working on the transmission issue, but had gone above and beyond for them by locating a truck with a trailer hitch that they could rent locally, since no rental companies the 2 travelers called would allow them to tow anything on their rental vehicles and allow them to complete the reason for this already long journey.

Richard and Steve drove up to Boston to get the remaining boats and towed them back to Norwalk, CT, they returned the “miracle” rental truck and spent the night at a local hotel. The next day, they were thrilled to learn that Steve from AAMCO had made come through for them again with an incredibly quick turnaround for both rebuilding the transmission and installing a transmission cooler.

That afternoon, much sooner than they had ever imagined, they were back on the road across country. With an expertly rebuilt transmission and the additional peace of mind that having an 18 month/18,000 nationwide warranty brings, they drove confidently state by state all the way home, thanks to Steve at AAMCO of Norwalk, CT.

*As originally reported by Steve Tosterud

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AAMCO Continues Nationwide Expansion With Eight New Centers

AAMCO announced today that it plans to open eight new service center locations with new and existing franchisees across the country. Over the next several months, AAMCO locations will open throughout the U.S. in cities like Queen Creek, Arizona; Upper Marlboro, MarylandQueensbury, New YorkLauderhill, FloridaWinchester, VirginiaHackensack, New JerseySpring, Texas; and Cutler Bay, Florida.

“Over the past year, we’ve been extremely focused on growing AAMCO’s presence across the country, particularly in markets where there is a need for very specialized auto repair shops,” said Brian O’Donnell, senior vice president of franchise sales at AAMCO Transmissions, Inc. “This announcement is a true testament to the momentum we have gained through our efforts and we look forward to entering 2018 with an even stronger focus on aggressive growth as the leading powertrain specialist.”

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Under New President & CEO Jim Gregory, American Driveline Systems Targets Nationwide Growth For AAMCO As The Leading Powertrain Specialist

American Driveline Systems, Inc. (“ADS”), parent company of AAMCO Transmissions, Inc., is targeting nationwide franchise growth as the leading powertrain specialist under new president and CEO Jim Gregory.

AAMCO franchisees employ top specialists in the industry who are able to diagnose electrical problems and perform complex repairs — making AAMCO the brand of choice when it comes to even the toughest car issues,” Gregory said. “In 2018, we will target aggressive franchise growth in markets where there is a need for very specialized auto shops, so consumers can have the convenience of AAMCO’s services where they work and live.”

With nearly 640 centers across North America, AAMCO is actively seeking single- and multi-unit franchisee operators to grow the brand nationwide, particularly in markets like DallasChicagoBaltimore, Washington, D.C.New YorkNew Jersey, and Hartford, Connecticut. Interested candidates should have a minimum net worth of $250,000 and liquid assets of at least $65,000 per unit. Depending on the real estate site selected, franchisees can expect the total investment to be approximately $223,600 to $330,000 with a $39,500 initial franchise fee. AAMCO offers financing support for qualified candidates. Reduced franchise fees are also available for honorably discharged veterans.

Known as the world’s leading transmission expert for more than 50 years, AAMCO’s network of locally owned and independently operated automotive service centers employs the latest technology. Expert technicians diagnose even the most complicated powertrain system issues, fix it right the first time, and back it with a nationwide warranty. AAMCO was named to Entrepreneur magazine’s 2017 Franchise 500 ranking top of its category for the third consecutive year. Additionally, AAMCO has been consecutively ranked on Franchise Times‘ Top 200+ for the last two years and was named to Training magazine’s Training Top 125 for its ongoing commitment to training through AAMCO University.

To learn more about franchise or conversion opportunities with AAMCO, contact Kim Robinson, director of franchise development, at 866-379-5649 or krobinson@aamco.com or visit aamcofranchises.com.

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AAMCO's 2017 Hurricane Relief Fund Update

The AAMCO family, including franchisees, AAMCO corporate and NADA (National AAMCO Dealers Association) came together to assist the many AAMCO centers across the country affected by this year's catastrophic hurricane season.

The 2017 AAMCO Hurricane Relief Fund was established with generous contributions for this important cause and raised over $50,000 to help those AAMCO family members impacted by both Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Harvey.
AAMCO logo

The funds have been distributed to those in need and have gone a long way towards helping many AAMCO family members. Below are just a few of the comments we’ve received from our franchisees:

“Thank you for the generous relief check from the greatest Auto Service Family there is. We at AAMCO of Bellaire/Houston on Chimney Rock made the decision to pay all of our employees so they would be able to take care of their families. I have to say that I have never appreciated what this kind of event does to a community. The destruction to lives of millions of people over such a large area is unprecedented. Again, we are grateful for the generosity of AAMCO Family in this emergency.”
Beal Pumphrey
Houston, TX AAMCO

“Thank you very much for your assistance and support with the hurricane relief fund. AAMCO’s support, along with everyone else who donated, is greatly needed and appreciated.”
Robert A Goldberg
AAMCO of Ocala, FL/AAMCO of Daytona Beach, FL

The many AAMCO Franchisees, NADA and AAMCO Corporate staff members who pulled together with a generous show of support to help one another during this difficult time, once again reminds us that we are all indeed a part of one big, family here at AAMCO.

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Schuylkill County Auto Shop Displays Creative Signs

AAMCO of Pottsville Total Car Care has a unique way of catching its customers’ attention.

Driving along Route 61 near Pottsville, a sign offering “pumpkin spice” motor oil might have caught your eye. It caught Jim Kelly’s of Scranton.
“I had to get a picture of this one,” Kelly said. “I think that’s a riot.”

The sign caught Newswatch 16’s* eye, too. We went inside the business where it’s located.

“We used to put all kinds of specials up out there and they never got any feedback, never,” said Ken Worrall, AAMCO of Pottsville Total Car Care. “One day, we were feeling quirky. We all kind of have a sense of humor and we just decided, alright, we’re just going to put some funny stuff on.”

He said his staff started coming up with different sayings for their sign about five years ago.

“We’ll sit here and brainstorm and whoever is giggling, that’s what makes it to the sign,” Worrall said.

The signs can be funny. “I need a six-month vacation, twice a year,” AAMCO of Pottsville Total Car Care Technician Douglas Homewood said. “That was one of my favorites.”

Others are more holiday-themed.

“We had, “Honk if you love America,” and we had that on for a few weeks,” AAMCO of Pottsville Total Car Care owner Tom Bashinsky said. “We had people constantly blowing the horns.”

Whatever the sign may say, the goal is still the same.

“If we bring a smile to somebody’s face once a day, we did our job,” Worrall said. “If we fixed their car and they’re safe, we did our job, times two.”

* OCTOBER 17, 2017, BY JESSICA ALBERT, Newswatch 16 WNEP

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Signs you might need your brakes serviced

Is your brake light constantly on?
Does the light come on when braking?

The skilled technicians at AAMCO know that there are many reasons that may cause your brake light to come on. It can indicate several different issues within your braking system, all of which can affect your vehicle’s safety and shouldn’t be ignored, as few parts of your car, truck or SUV are as essential as working brakes.

Brake Issue Symptoms:

  • Your brake fluid is low.
    This could be an indication of a leak.
  • Your brake pads are getting low.
    Many manufacturers include sensors in the pads which can indicate when the pads are close to the end of their life. When the pads wear down to a certain point, this sensor touches the brake rotor and triggers the light to come on.
  • You may have an anti-lock problem with a sensor or a part.
    This could be dangerous and should be checked out quickly.
  • Or…. oops! It could be that you simply forgot to release the parking brake,
    and it’s just a matter of doing so. If you have driven far or often like this, you could have worn down the brakes and should get them checked to be on the safe side.
  • Squealing, Grinding, Squeaking, or Groaning Sounds
    The squeaking could be that your pads are worn down to the wear indicators and they are telling you to get the brake pads changed before you do damage to the rotors and calipers. The grinding could be that you waited too long and they are now metal to metal and completely worn out. Whatever the noise you hear when you push on the brakes, it’s important to get them checked to avoid creating any further damage.
  • Pedal Vibrations or Pulsations
    Pedal pulsations or vibrations are usually caused by a condition where the brake rotor has worn unevenly. This pedal movement happens because as the brake pads go in and out to follow the unevenness of the brake rotor, the pedal under your foot follows that movement. Usually this will necessitate replacing the pads and rotors. Another more dangerous condition could be that you have loose brake parts or a loose wheel. Get this checked out immediately. If you suspect anything loose, do not drive the car, have someone look at it before operating again.
  • Car driving or pulling to one side when applying the brakes
     condition could be caused by a hydraulic caliper sticking, a loose brake part or even a loose steering or suspension part. This can be very dangerous and should be checked out immediately.
  • A low, soft or spongy brake pedal
    All these conditions are generally created by leaking brake fluid. You may have a hose, line, or hydraulic cylinder or caliper leaking in the system and if not repaired immediately will eventually cause you to lose all braking. If your pedal goes to the floor or becomes soft or spongy, check the master cylinder reservoir to see if it’s low and have a professional take a look immediately.  Avoid driving if possible.
  • Smoke or a hot burning smell from a wheel
    This condition happens when a hydraulic caliper has frozen in the applied position and will not release. This condition usually ruins the pads, the rotor and the caliper. Always replace them in pairs and change the hoses that feed the caliper.

All parts, especially brakes, wear out over time. Delaying brake inspections and maintenance servicing could put you, your passengers and people around you at unnecessary risk. Like most automotive maintenance and repair problems and issues, the longer you put it off, the greater the chance for larger repair bills.

If you are experiencing any issues with your brakes, stop in or call your local AAMCO center today for an appointment. It’s important to have your brakes checked for any potential problems long before they ever stop you on the road. The skilled technicians at AAMCO will to help keep your braking system in good working order.




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What does it mean when your Check Engine Light is on?

And there it is.
The dreaded Check Engine Light just appeared on your dashboard out of nowhere.
Or you've seen it flashing on and off a few times before and maybe you just hoped it would go away by itself.

Your Check Engine Light functions to help ensure your safety on the road.
The light coming on is really just an early warning signal from one of your car’s computers that it notices something is not right that could potentially cause damage to your vehicle, pollute the air, etc. if not taken care of quickly.  It’s important to find out exactly what the light is trying to tell you.

When your car’s Check Engine Light comes on, it could mean a lot of different things are happening within your vehicle.
Issues can range from a weak oxygen sensor, to anti-lock braking system trouble or a more costly problem, like an engine or transmission issue. It could also simply be something very minor, like a loose or missing gas cap.

This system will also produce codes that can be retrieved by AAMCO’s technicians that will tell them just what system or circuit is seeing the problem. Oftentimes, it may take more in-depth testing to pinpoint exactly what in that identified circuit or system is at fault. Without professional testing of the components in the circuit, you could be throwing costly parts at the problem without actually repairing the real problem.

When you see your Check Engine Light come on, the most important thing you can do is to get a correct diagnosis of what is triggering the light on or flashing as soon as possible.

AAMCO can help you whenever your Check Engine Light comes on.
We will retrieve the codes and tell you what system has caused the light to come on and what will be required to turn the light off.

Your safety on the road is important to us at AAMCO.  If your Check Engine Light is on, let one of our expert technicians correctly diagnose your vehicle. Stop in or call us today for an appointment at an AAMCO center near you.

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