Let’s face it: cars can be expensive. From the initial purchase to repairs and gas, owning a vehicle is seldom cheap. But there are things you can do to save money and keep your ride chugging along for years to come. Here are 5 ways to spend time on your car’s maintenance and save cash down the road.
1. Find a Repair Shop You Trust
Not all mechanics (or repair facilities) are alike. While most automotive professionals are hard-working and ethical, it’s undeniable that there are businesses (or at least employees) who seem to focus on up-selling. Find a shop with pros you trust; having a team that will give you honest opinions on which services need to be performed and which ones can wait will help you spend your pennies effectively.
2. Don’t Skip the Oil Change
The blood running through your veins has a lot to do with your health; think of your car’s oil the same way. Regular oil changes (and knowing which kind to use) will go a long way toward keeping your vehicle running smoothly. Fortunately, the old standard of 3,000 miles between oil changes has widely increased to 5,000, depending on the year, make, and model of your car. Of course, you should always consult your owner’s manual for information on what’s best for your ride.
3. Stayed Tuned(-Up)
As long as we’re comparing vehicles to people, here’s another thought: you see your doctor every year to make sure you’re healthy, right? Well, mechanics do the same for your car. By performing routine tune-ups, they’re able to identify and fix issues before they become a problem. Oftentimes (as with anything in life), preventing a problem can be much less expensive than fixing one. And the best part? Most automobile experts only recommend one every 30,000 miles (or approximately every 2 years). But don’t worry; your baby won’t feel a thing.
4. Keep an Eye Out (for Fluids)
Maintaining proper fluid level is another important way to ensure your car stays in prime condition. Some of the most common ones to watch include: engine oil; brake fluid; coolant; transmission fluid; windshield washer fluid; and power steering fluid. Have your mechanic check and replenish your fluids with every oil change. Of course, you can also take the reins and do it yourself.
5. Stay Balanced (and Rotated)
What’s the big deal with tire rotations anyway? This step doesn’t just ensure you’re maintaining even tread on all four tires; if done regularly, it can actually prolong the life of your car, improve gas mileage, and facilitate a smoother ride. Not only that, but it also affords your mechanic the opportunity to inspect the undercarriage for any looming concerns. Your owner’s manual is a great resource for learning about things like timing and rotation pattern; however, it’s generally recommended that you get your tires rotated at the same intervals as your oil changes.
These are just a few money-saving tips to help keep your car running at its best. If you’re the type who prefers to handle the maintenance yourself, a career in Automotive Technology, Diesel Technology or Commercial Truck Driving may be a great option. Why not check out J-Tech for more information on our programs? If you’ve got the drive, we’ve got the roadway—and the path looks clear. For more information, call us at (877) 447-0442 today.