Monday, February 5, 2018

FIXD - Does This New DIY Diagnostic Device Really Fix Car Problems?
There is a new product on the market called FIXD.   I have seen it numerous times advertised on social media.   What is FIXD you ask?   They claim it is “a device you can carry with you in your car to tell you exactly what is wrong with it!”   WHAT????  Sign us up!

The ad for FIXD talks about how “mechanics” knowingly and easily take advantage of people because of their lack of knowledge about car maintenance needs and that they also lie to you and charge you whatever they want because they are only in it for the $$$$.  This product, they claim, is so simple to use that you just plug it into your OBD-II port (on cars that are 1996 and newer).  You download an app on your smart phone and the system is able to identify 6,800 maladies affecting your car that may turn the check engine light on.  It also gives you the ability to clear dashboard lights, including TPMS, ABS, Airbag or Maintenance.

Here’s the thing.   This “tool” may tell you what area is causing your check engine light to be on but it does not tell you how to fix it.  Say a code comes up because the engine is not receiving enough fuel.   Ok, so how does FIXD tell you how to fix that?  Most folks wouldn’t know where to begin because they do not have automotive training to know how to properly repair this.  Our certified technicians have had schooling and continued education so they can read the codes and know exactly where to begin to fix this problem.  And if you just clear the dashboard light, that does not make the problem go away!

We have professional tools that plug into your engine’s computer that scans for codes.  It does not tell us how to fix the problem specifically, but points us to the area of which component is failing.  We then use our years of experience and equipment to determine what the best fix for your vehicle is.   We will scan your vehicle if you have acheck engine light for FREE!   Yep – we’ll do it for free and tell you what area of failure you have.  At that point, you have the option of repairing the vehicle yourself or having us do the work.

As far as the claim that auto repair shops are trying to rip people off, that is bunk!   We have consistently worked very hard to change this perception of automotive shops.  We believe it is our duty to educate you on your vehicle.   Knowledge is powerful and if you understand what we are doing, then you will have a better understanding of how your car works.
Maybe I am feeling a little cynical about this product.  I don’t know but I do know the old adage, “when something sounds too good to be true, it usually is.”

Keep checking our blog for the latest news and tips from Holzhauser’s Auto!

Thursday, January 11, 2018


Most vehicles are required to undergo a safety inspection prior to obtaining vehicle plates in the State of Maryland.   Usually, the seller or the person transferring the vehicle is required to obtain the inspection certificate.  In some cases, a vehicle is sold privately and is not inspected.  In this case, it is the buyer’s responsibility to get the car inspected in order to tag the vehicle.

Holzhauser’s Auto Service is an authorized Maryland safety inspection station.   Our fee for Maryland State Inspection is $79.95.  We have been licensed by the Maryland State police and are authorized to inspect:

-          Passenger cars
-          Light trucks and SUVs with a gross vehicle weight of 10,000 lbs. or less, and
-          Trailers that are 20 feet in length or less, without air brakes.

The safety inspection takes about 1-1/2 hours to go through all the components, so it is best to schedule an appointment to drop your vehicle off.  The inspector will inspect your vehicle and prepare an inspection report showing the vehicle parts or systems examined and whether or not they have met Maryland’s standards.

If the vehicle meets the safety standards, the inspector will electronically transmit the e-inspection to the Motor Vehicle Administration.  You will receive the inspection number showing that the vehicle has passed that you can take with you to the MVA.

If your vehicle does not pass the safety standards, an inspection certificate cannot be issued.  It is your responsibility to have the problems that failed fixed and re-inspected at the same inspection station and by the same inspector.   

You have three options for fixing the repairs:  
(1) Get a quote from the inspection station to fix the repairs, 
(2) Take the vehicle to another facility for repairs or 
(3) Fix the problem yourself.

The vehicle must be re-inspected within 30 days of the original inspection date and you have driven it less than 1,000 miles.   The inspector will re-inspect the failed items from the initial inspection, however, if a new defect is visually observed during the re-inspection, the newly discovered defect must be repaired and re-inspected.  There is no charge for each re-inspection if the repair can be visually verified, such as a burned out light bulb.   However, if jacking, lifting, measuring or testing the vehicle is required, a re-inspection fee may be charged.

If you have any questions about the inspection process you can contact us directly at (410) 272-1170 or contact the Maryland State Police, Automotive Safety Enforcement Division at 1-800-950-1682.

Happy New Year!

Keep checking our blog for the latest news and tips from Holzhauser’s Auto!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Super Bowl and Cars!

Holzhauser's Auto Tips - Old vs. New

“Two old men in a retirement village were sitting in the reading room and one said to the other, ''How do you really feel? I mean, you're 82 years old, how do you honestly feel?''
''Honestly, I feel like a newborn baby. I've got no hair, no teeth, and I just wet myself.''

As I sit here watching Super Bowl 50 I can't help but think about old vs new. Peyton Manning is a seasoned quarterback at 39 years old playing on The Denver Broncos, a team that's been around since 1960. On the other side, there is Cam Newton at 26 years old playing for the Carolina Panthers who have only been around since 1993. Both teams are equally matched as each won their Division. 

How does this relate to cars you ask?  My question:   which is better -- an older car or a new car right off of the showroom floor?  Of course, the newer car will have all the latest bells and whistles but the older car, while not being up to date with the latest features, can still be just as reliable as the new car if it is well maintained. 

When customers are faced with the decision of making a costly repair or trading their vehicle in for a newer model it is our job to explain to them the vehicle’s condition so they can make the right decision for their budget. If a car has been properly maintained (oil changed regularly and scheduled maintenances done) then it may be worth doing the repair and keeping the car for several more years. If, however, the car has not been maintained on a regular basis then the repairs necessary to get it up to date may not be worth it.

We advise customers of the condition of their vehicle so that they can make an informed decision to repair or replace the vehicle. Of course we are always here to answer any questions you may have regarding your car, so please do not hesitate to stop in to see us. 

Keep checking our blog for the latest news and tips from Holzhauser’s Auto!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Celebrating 20 Years!

“Success is not the key to happiness.  Happiness is the key to success.  If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”
– Albert Schweitzer

Today I walked into the bank and was greeted with lots of congratulations and handshakes.  Our local paper ran a press release regarding Holzhauser’s Auto’s 20th Anniversary.  I never really gave it much thought as I am not the “pomp and circumstance” type so I was caught off guard at first.  After accepting the congratulations, it sank in what we have accomplished over the years. Twenty years in business is something to celebrate.  Joe and I have put out hearts and souls into our business, but a business isn’t just comprised of that.  Without all the folks who help us daily, especially our employees, we wouldn’t be where we are today.  Our employees are the best in the business and we consider them a part of our family.  Our parts vendors, drivers, uniform delivery service, tool trucks and everyone else who is involved with our business on a daily basis must be thanked for helping us reach this monumental milestone.  We are truly blessed to be celebrating our 20 year anniversary.  Most of all we are truly thankful for all of our wonderful customers who patronize us each and every day, some who have been with us since we opened our doors in 1995.  We have watched their families grow up throughout the years and some of their children are now our customers.  Likewise, they have watched our children grow up and begin families of their own.  Joe and I love doing what we do and still believe, “the best is yet to come!”

auto repair aberdeen
Keep checking our blog for the latest news and tips from Holzhauser’s Auto!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Why We Do What We Do

A German walks into a bar and asks for a martini. The bartender asks, “Dry?”
The German replies, “Nein, just one.”

(“Drei”—pronounced “dry”—is German for “three”. “Nein”—pronounced “nine”—is German for “No”. Yes … I know - “Dieser Witz stinkt” is German for “This joke stinks.”)

Many people don’t know why they are in business.   Yes, of course they know what they do in their business.   In our business, for example, we fix cars.   It’s what we do.

However, I’ve recently been asked, “Why did you start a business?   Why do you do what you do?”   That is a really good question and made me think long and hard.

We started our business because Joe and I felt like we could provide a quality of care and service for what we believe auto repair should be.  We are concerned about safety issues and to address that, we believe cars should be maintained to run properly and be dependable.   We also want our customers to receive the respect and individualized attention they deserve.

Yes we fix cars, but we’re also in the maintenance business – trying to keep your car on the road as long as possible.   Most importantly though, we are in the customer satisfaction business.  One of our goals is to have every customer leave our shop feeling satisfied that we fixed or maintained their car exactly the way they wanted it done.   We also, want customers to feel that they can call us anytime with questions concerning their vehicle.   This all ties in to quality of care, what we believe in.

We love providing top-notch auto repair as is expected.   Thank you for trusting in our service for the past 20 years.  We couldn’t have done it without you.

My question is, why is that German drinking martinis?   Shouldn’t he be having a big stein of beer, nein?

Keep checking our blog for the latest news and tips from Holzhauser’s Auto!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Car Maintenance and Maryland State Inspections

If you're looking for a reliable Maryland State Inspection for passenger cars, light trucks, and SUVs with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,000 pounds or less or for trailers 20 feet in length or less, without air brakes, you need look no further than Holzhauser’s auto repair shop.
Periodic inspections are required by law; plus they help you preserve your car's value, lowering chances of breakdowns, and other problems. Not having your vehicle inspected may open you up to penalties mandated by law.

As an experienced and reliable auto repair facility, we at Holzhauser’s are fully equipped and qualified to perform the requisite checks on your vehicle to certify its safety and road worthiness. You can rest assured your vehicle will be thoroughly inspected for all the checks required by law such as:
·         GVWR Equal to or Less Than 10,000 Pounds — steering, wheels, tires, suspension, exhaust and fuel system, electrical and light system, bumpers, glazing, mirrors, all safety equipment, speedometer /odometer, glazing, wipers, Universal and CV (constant velocity) joints, and other checks
·         GVWR Over 10,000 Pounds  — steering, wheels, tires, suspension, exhaust and fuel system, electrical and light system, bumpers, hood or hatches, door handle latches, floor or trunk pans, and speedometer /odometer
·         Trailer — hitches, suspension, emergency brakes, tires, rear metal frame, rear wheel flaps, lights, electrical system, and fenders

After receiving an accurate assessment for your vehicle, you can be rest assured of the safety and road worthiness of your vehicle. In the event of your vehicle not passing the inspection, you have the option of repairing the problems with us, or another shop, and then try to have your vehicle re-certified. 

Give us a call to learn more about our car maintenance in Aberdeen, MD, and our highly competitive and reasonable rates. We are happy to answer any questions you may have and can schedule a mutually convenient appointment if you’d like to bring your vehicle in for an inspection to our facility.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Who’s Job Is It Anyway?

There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure Somebody would do it.
Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it.
Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody's job.
Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it.
It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have.
At some point or another in your job, you have been faced with a situation that “somebody” didn’t know who was supposed to do something.  The main goal, I believe, of every organization is for everyone to work together to have the business or organization run cohesively.  That is what we strive for here at Holzhauser’s.   That is why we make such a great team.  Let me tell you how we work together.
Joe and I own the business, but we don’t feel we are above our employees.   After all, employees are what keep our business running.   Without them, well, we would be working our butts off or out of business altogether.  Joe knows how to run the counter and speak with customers, as well as fixing cars and helping with marketing.
I can speak with customers and schedule appointments.   My main job is bookkeeping, keeping the paperwork in order and keeping customers coming through the door using marketing strategies.
Andres’ job is building great customer relationships, but he also helps me with the paperwork, marketing and is the liaison to the techs.  He also worked on cars in the past so, if that was necessary, he could jump in to help.  Andres also speaks Spanish, which is a great asset to our Spanish-speaking customers.
Tim and Nick’s job is to fix cars.  They also can explain to customers in person or on the phone about a problem or repair that a car needs.  They coordinate with Andres to get the job done.
So, now that you know what we all do, if you have a problem, anyone here at Holzhauser’s can help you or get you the help that you need.  Working together is what makes us a team and I wouldn’t trade our team for the world!

Keep checking our blog for the latest news and tips from Holzhauser’s Auto!