Tire Kickers: Sponsors of Northwest Battle Buddies

Northwest Battle Buddies of Battle Ground Washington (http://www.northwestbattlebuddies.org/ ) trains service dogs for veterans with PTSD. What sets them apart from other trainers is that they provide the dog at no cost to the veteran.

If you’ve been following any of Tire Kickers blogs or social media just ahead of Christmas you couldn’t miss the clothing/textile drive for Northwest Battle Buddies. The drive was a huge success and we had a lot of fun. We’re proud to report that Northwest battle buddies has garnered the attention of UPS who has produced a great video. Follow the link to see the video.


Tire Kickers is proud to partner with charities like Northwest Battle Buddies to benefit veterans. Stay tuned to learn about upcoming charity events we take part in.

Tire Kickers is also proudly supporting two other charities. One being Union Gospel Mission of Portland, who have benefited from clothing, shoes, and coats donated to a Tire Kicker drive. Please consider those who need assistance this winter. https://ugmportland.org/

Another charity Tire Kickers is proud to partner with is Dream Big. At Dream Big Community Center young people receive encouragement to aim higher. Many young people don’t realize the limitations they place on themselves simply by deciding something is not attainable for them. To learn more about Dream Big check out their website. http://dreambigcc.org/


Tire Kickers: The plan to train and employ 18,000 returning veterans

  1. In the ten years since the US entered Iraq 2.5 million service men and woman have been deployed to the Middle East, many were deployed multiple times (400,000 of which have served three or more tours)1. 1.6 million of these military personnel have transitioned back to civilian life, but the transition is not always a smooth one.Tire Kickers is Veteran owned and employs returning veterans as inspectors, but can they do more? The answer is yes. Currently, 40% of Tire Kickers inspectors are veterans and they intend increase that percentage to 80% as Tire Kickers goes nationwide.

    The Demand:

    With 43 million used cars sold each year in the US, and a single inspector able to inspect six to eight cars a day, the total demand for inspectors is over 20,600. Realistically, Tire Kickers might not inspect all of the cars for sale, but based on the 80% response at Hackomotive 2014, Tire Kickers feels they could need over 16,500 inspectors.

    In order to fill those positions with veterans, Tire Kickers has developed a 40 hour training course which it plans to offer to veterans at cost. This training prepares an inspector to standards much higher than standard mechanical certification. If Tire Kickers can secure a government grant to offset those training costs for veterans, training could be free.

    Lobbying for the cause:

    Tire Kickers is actively writing state governments across America to encourage them to get on board with us. If all 50 states required third party inspection the training received at Tire Kickers could employ a full 20,000 veterans at a better than living wage. Car inspection also has built in opportunities for partially disabled veterans such as the ability to work part time or set their own schedule.

    The thing about Tire Kickers is that they don’t have to personally employ every auto inspector in America in order to throw themselves into making this happen. They are so passionate about creating a world in which every vehicle rolling down the road has been safety checked, every auto buyer pays what a vehicle is really worth based on current condition, and as many transitioning veterans have employment that they are willing to virtually create this industry from the ground up.

    Can Tire Kickers get 20,000 veterans better than living wage careers? I wouldn’t bet against them.

    1. http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/03/14/185880/millions-went-to-war-in-iraq-afghanistan.html
    2. http://www.nydailynews.com/autos/auto-sales-reach-six-year-high-demand-peaked-article-1.1567645

Auto Health and Safety

Car Maintenance Guides

Daily Inspection

  • No matter how short your trip you should always do the following:
  • Unless your car is in your garage check the back seat to make sure no one is hiding there.
  • Then walk 360 degrees around your car and verify that your tires have adequate tread and no visible damage.
  • Bend down and look for fluid on the ground that could indicate a leak.
  • Once inside, check you visibility. Are the windows free of cracks? Are the mirrors set correctly?
  • Upon starting your car, check your gages. Secure anything that might shift during transit.
  • Before shifting into gear, has everyone put their seat belts on?

Monthly (or Pre-Trip) Inspection

  • In addition to the above pre-drive habit, before a trip:
  • Check your fluids, wiper fluids, radiator coolant, brake & transmission. A complete list should be in your owner’s manual.
  • Check the sticker in your window to verify that you don’t need an oil change.
  • Consider having your battery tested, especially in winter.
  • Check your air filter. Often you can simply bang debris out by hitting it on the palm of your hand. Then check how dark a gray it is. Remember it was bright white when installed and it’s cheap to replace.
  • Have someone stand behind your car and verify that your brake and tail lights are working.
  • Inspect your windshield wiper blades for cracks or tares.
  • Make sure there aren’t any safety recalls on your vehicle
  • Finally, locate your spare tire and make sure it’s inflated and that the jack works.

Yearly – Professional Safety Inspection

As with dental visits, an annual safety inspection can reduce hassle and expense by finding problems before they develop. Also like a dental visit, it’s best to call in a trained professional.

A Tire Kickers Safety Inspection includes a visual inspection of all items on your vehicle to insure it is road worthy and safe to drive, and then goes in depth working from a list of what would strand you fastest.

Areas of in-depth inspection include:

Tires (pressure, tread depth, manufacturer recalls, proper type and size, manufacture date)

Engine (belts, hoses and fluid levels)

Electrical: battery condition, headlights, taillights, turn signals, emergency flashers, brake lights, all dash warning lights and more.

Other Resources

The Kicker – Newsletter

Pinterest Link

Helpful Videos Link

The Inspection Process

The process begins once the request has been received through our website or customer service center.  Once we have the location of the vehicle, a certified Tire Kickers inspector is immediately dispatched to perform the inspection. The inspection begins with the collection of some general information such as the year, manufacturer, model VIN number and mileage.  This information is vital when establishing value.  It also allows us to verify that the information collected is accurate.  Throughout the inspection you may notice our inspector taking pictures.  This is done to provide any visual evidence that may arise.

The evaluation of the overall safety of the vehicle is the next step.  During this phase of the inspection a series of items such as headlights, turn signals, glass, and most importantly tires are evaluated.  If the vehicle fails this section of the inspection, the interested buyer is advised and asked if they want to proceed.  If they elect to proceed then the inspection moves onto the next section.  If however, they decide that based on the results of the safety inspection that they are no longer interested in pursuing the purchase of the vehicle, they will receive a refund in the amount of the difference of the inspection ordered and the one performed.

Once the safety portion of the inspection has been completed, the inspector will begin the next phase which evaluates the overall condition of the exterior of the vehicle.  It’s during this stage where paint flaws and dents as well as any other conditions that may be present are noted.

Once the exterior has been inspected we move into the interior.  The interior inspection checks all the options, electronics, climate controls and gauges to make sure they are functioning correctly.  The condition of the seats, carpet and dashboard are also evaluated.

The final phase of the inspection involves the test drive of the automobile by one of our highly trained inspectors.  This one of the most critical components of the whole inspection.  It is during this phase that breaking, acceleration and overall engine performance is evaluated and scored.

By the time this phase has been completed we have now invested about an hour into the evaluation of your next automobile.  While the inspection may appear complete it is far from over.  The inspector now remotely sends his findings and photos into our processing facility.  Once there one of our processors use highly sophisticated algorithms to analyze the data accumulated over the course of the inspection.  The results give us the information necessary to establish a fair market value. Upon completion all the data and photos are compiled into a Tire Kickers report.  For your convenience and upon your request, additional copies of this report can also be emailed to your lender and insurance agent.

Your Tire Kickers report will help you determine if this vehicle still meets your needs.  It will give you leverage to better negotiate with the dealer on price.  But most importantly, it will give you peace of mind.