Car maintenance can be expensive. Belt replacements, oil changes, tune-ups and other more costly repairs like transmission and engine service on a single vehicle can cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars each year. Although none of these things are fun to spend money on, they are often very necessary and can cost us even more money if they are not completed properly and in a timely manor. Here are a few ideas for ways that you can care for your car without breaking the bank:
Plan for it.
Part of my emergency fund savings account contains a portion of money that I’ve set aside for car maintenance. This amount has changed over the years depending on the car that I have and what repairs I’m expecting. Right now, I have a little bit of a newer car, so I do not have quite as much saved as I did when I had an older car with a transmission that I knew would go any day. When you’ve made an effort to plan for services and repairs that are unavoidable, it makes it a much easier pill to swallow when you need to shell out the cash. It is also nice to not be scrambling for money while your car waits to be serviced.
Do it yourself.
There are many car repairs that can be done right at home. These include windshield wiper changes, headlight replacements and more depending on your skill leval. The great thing is that even if you are clueless when it comes to cars (me!), the Internet provides a plethora of resources on at-home car repair. I recently replaced both of my tail-lights all by myself thanks to YouTube! I’m not sure what it would have cost to get it done at a repair shop, but I do know that it would have been a lot more than just the cost of the bulb and it sure felt good knowing that I was able to accomplish that small task on my own. You can also sometimes as auto supply shops like AutoZone to help you out or provide you with pointers if you are unsure of how to do something.
Look for coupons.
Most auto repair shops have coupons available on their websites and sometimes through home mailers. I like to keep the coupons that I receive at home in an envelope just in case an unexpected repair comes up and I need to use them.
Use Daily Deal websites.
I’ve recently seen quite a few car service deals on daily deal websites like Groupon and WeeklyPlus (if you are in CO or AZ). These deals have included oil changes, car washes tire rotation and more!
What other things do you do to save on car maintenance?
This post is part of the Bargain Blessings Savings Pledge series. If you have not already made your savings pledge, please do so and follow along with this series for lots more tips on how you can meet that pledge. Below is a list of the topics that I have covered so far. If you have any suggestions on future topics please e-mail me or leave it in the comments section.