It’s not unusual for even newer cars to break down or need repairing from time to time, but it can become extremely frustrating when it feels like when you’ve paid for one repair, another problem arises. When this happens, it’s easy to feel like giving up on your car and simply buying a new one, but that’s not always the right option. With the right care, your car will last for many years and with these tips, you can dramatically cut the amount you spend on your car each year.
It goes without saying really, but it’s also extremely tempting to put your foot down on an open road and feel the thrill of adrenaline as you speed around. However, not only is this dangerous (there are speed limits for a reason), but it’s also exposing your car to unnecessary damage. Careless driving can cause damage to your car over a period of time and cause different components to slowly deteriorate. Your car will last much longer if you stick to the speed limit and drive sensibly, therefore preventing you from having to dip your hand in your pocket for repairs.
Look after your wheels
The wheels on a car are often overlooked because as long as they roll forward and backward, the car is fine, right? If your wheels don’t have enough air, aren’t aligned properly, or have a puncture, then not only will they cost you to get repaired, but they will also cost you more fuel to run the car. Be sure to check your tires regularly to see if they need pumping up (the booklet your car came with will tell you what PSI it needs). If you need to replace your wheels at any point, it might be worth looking at wheels and tyres packages so all of your wheels and tires are the same, therefore making your car more efficient to run.
Get an OBD scanner
On-Board Diagnostics can quickly tell you what’s going on with your vehicle and will also alert you of possible future problems.
Have your car regularly serviced
Many people try and drive their cars without a service between MOTs – and sometimes that’s absolutely fine! However, regularly servicing your cars will allow your mechanic to pick up on problems that may arise in the future, and eliminate them before they become an expensive problem. While it might seem like you’re spending more, prevention is the best way to avoid paying out large amounts when something does go wrong on your car.
You should also take note of the sounds your car is making, and how it sounds when it’s problem-free. If you notice any new sounds like spluttering, buzzing, rattling, or an odd-sounding engine, you should get your car seen as soon as possible. Again, picking up on something early may prevent a large and expensive repair.
Park somewhere safe
A risk we all take when parking our cars is whether it’s going to be safe or not. You simply don’t know if another car is going to crash into it, or if your car will be broken into or vandalized. Parking somewhere safe may cost you a little bit of money, but it will help prevent another unnecessary trip to the garage. Not only that, you can let your insurance company know that your car is stored somewhere safe and this will help lower your premium.
Change your insurance
As humans, it’s natural to go for the cheapest option when choosing car insurance. However, this often means sacrificing a few vital elements along the way. Switching your insurance to fully covered will give you that peace of mind that if something happens to your car that you can’t pay for out of pocket, then your insurance coverage may be able to help. Compare fully comp car insurance quotes to get the best bang for your buck.
Learn basic car checks
While you should be taking your car for a service regularly, there are also things you could be doing too. Learning how to do basic car checks such as testing the pressure in your tires or checking the oil level will help save you trips to the garage in the long run. They’re really simple to do and could make the difference between services and your MOT. Here’s a great guide on basic car checks and how you can self-service your car.
Consider a dashcam
Crashes or bumps with other vehicles happen from time to time, but this can be extremely costly, especially if you’re not at fault and the other driver won’t admit the blame, therefore leaving you to shell out the costs. Installing a dashcam can help protect you if an accident does occur where you’re not at fault, and the footage recorded can be used as proof when claiming on your insurance. Not only that, a dashcam will bring your premiums down as well.
Switch to economic fuel
You may have noticed when filling up your car that in some garages there’s an “eco fuel” option. Speak to your mechanic about this before using it, but in most cases, switching to economic fuel will help your car last longer, as it doesn’t clog your car up as quickly as regular fuel does. It might be a touch more expensive to buy but in the long run, it could prevent many problems with your car in the future.
Keep it clean
A clean car will not change the oil but putting the love and care into the will help you keep up with the regular maintenance. Consider ceramic coating your car or taking off the tiny particles of iron stuck into the paint. Overall, putting in that time and effort into your vehicle means you’re spending more time with it to know what’s going on.
As you can see, there are a plethora of ways to cut the costs back of running and owning a car. Sometimes spending a little more initially will prevent larger costs in the future, and some things will take your insurance down! Use these tips to cut your costs down!
There are many resources which can help you to save money on your car expenses. For a few places to get started, check out the following apps and websites:
- GasBuddy: Using this application you can locate your nearest gas stations, and find the cheapest deals. With this app, you can get tips about reducing your fuel usage, and saving money on gas.
- Parkopedia: It can be tricky to find a parking spot in a big city. The Parkopedia app helps you to find available parking spots, and compare the prices.
- CT Travel Smart: Planning your route can help you to reduce your driving times, and save money on fuel. Check out DOT traffic on the CT Travel Smart website. Here you can get the latest traffic and disruption info, to help you plan your journey.