It’s no secret that owning a car can be expensive, and costly repairs can take a chunk out of your budget when you least expect them. Even after making a good down payment, the average monthly payment on a new vehicle is $523. What’s more, for the average vehicle, ownership costs can reach up to $8,469 a year.
Fortunately, there are a few ways you can save on auto repairs when it comes to your family car. Here are five tips you can use to save on car repairs.
Rely on your owner’s manual, not your mechanic
Mechanics are great, but it’s important to remember that not all mechanics have your best interest in mind. After all, they’re running a business. Checking your owner’s manual regularly will give you a good idea of when your vehicle needs maintenance. That means you’ll know whether your vehicle is due for an oil change when you bring your family car in to have the tires rotated.
Teach yourself the basics
In the words of John Mulaney, “I meant to learn about cars, and then I forgot.” One of the good things about living in the digital age is that whenever you want to learn how to do something, the information is right at your fingertips. In fact, Google receives over 63,000 searches per second every day.
If you don’t know the basics on how to do small repairs on your car, now’s a great time to learn. Pull up a few videos on YouTube and give ’em a watch. The more you know about taking care of your vehicle, the more confident you’ll feel on the road.
Invest in maintenance tools
One of the best ways you can save money on car repairs is by investing in tools so you can do those repairs yourself. A torque wrench was invented over 100 years ago and it’s still used to apply a torque to a fastener like a nut or bolt. Work on adding a tool to your maintenance toolbox over time. Some of the key tools you should have on hand include screwdrivers, pliers, wrenches, an oil filter wrench, an oil drain and caddy, and an air compressor.
Change your car insurance policy
When you’re looking at buying a car insurance policy, make sure that you read through the policy as if you’re in a worst-case scenario. If you get into a car accident and a personal injury suit is filed, a defendant has three weeks to answer the claim. Depending on your car insurance policy, your insurance company may pay for the cost of repairs or the total loss of your vehicle even if you were at fault for the accident.
Your family car is important for getting you where you need to go, but that doesn’t mean you need to spend a fortune to keep it on the road. By following the tips above, you can make car repairs a little less expensive so you don’t need to sweat the miles you drive.