Here are seven ways that car maintenance can save you money in the long run.
What do the dentist and the auto repair shop have in common? Both are places where nobody wants to be. Unfortunately, if you own a car, you will find yourself in a repair shop at least once, unless you’re extremely lucky. How can you make yourself less known to the local mechanic? By ensuring your car is running at its peak.
Since car maintenance is a must when it comes to expenses, let’s look at seven ways that it can keep money in your pocket over time. In other words, let’s frame it in a positive light, so you’re more likely to keep things up to date with your automobile.
Inflate your tires
You don’t want to overinflate them, but keeping your tires inflated at their recommended pressure can reduce inflation at the gas pump.
If you check your tire pressure regularly, you can save hundreds of dollars per year on fuel. Every pound of under-inflation counts, as just a one-pound difference can result in a six percent loss in gas mileage.
Balance your tires
Getting your tires balanced at least once a year is a great way to keep the mechanic away.
What happens if you don’t get them balanced? You can damage your suspension, accelerate the wear and tear on your shock absorbers, and reduce the mileage on your tires.
Balancing on a routine basis can add thousands of miles to your tires’ lifespan, decreasing the need to buy new ones so frequently. For this reason alone, ask for a balance when you get that occasional oil change.
Opt for steel-belted radial tires
This type of tire is a gas-saver. Putting them on your car can boost your gas mileage by 10 percent annually.
Don’t skimp on oil changes
Want to extend the life of your engine? Get your oil and oil filter changed every 3,000 miles.
Yes, this may go against advice from those who say you don’t need oil changes so often, but the more frequently you get them, the less risk you run of having to pay for a major repair later on.
You want your car to run optimally like the beautiful machine it is. A tune-up can help you achieve this goal, and it can also cut fuel expenditures too.
How much of a difference can routine tune-ups make? A rather massive one, since a car that is poorly tuned can burn up to 33 percent more gas per year.
Keep an eye on the air filter
You don’t necessarily need a costly mechanic to keep your car’s air filter clean. You can check it every month to ensure it’s clean, and a quick blow with an air hose should help it look like new.
The cleaner your air filter, the likelier your engine lives longer. It can also improve your gas mileage, which is a money-saver in itself.
Watch those fluids
You can extend your car’s life and increase the efficiency of its parts by checking fluid levels routinely. If you don’t know how to do it yourself, ask your mechanic for the favor.
Automatic transmission fluid, clutch and brake fluid, coolant, and battery water should all be monitored.