Cars are expensive. And even worse, you’re not done paying for your car when you drive off of the lot, or even when you make your last payment on that auto loan. Nope, your car will continue costing you money long after that. Of course, hopefully it will also make sure that you are able to comfortably and easily get around town. But, you’re still going to end up paying for regular maintenance, the inevitable auto repair or two (or five if you’re unlucky), gas, car washes etc.
Of all of those items, the most expensive are probably going to be gas and maintenance/car repair. Since, our phone calls to OPEC asking them to lower the price of gas went un-returned (how rude, and we spent so long brushing up on our Arabic!) we’re going to give you some tips on how you can save money on auto repair instead. With this information you should be able to get the best deal on that car repair that your vehicle will inevitably need down the road.
- Keep up with regular maintenance – This really is essential. If you are really handy and knowledgeable about cars, you might be able to save money by performing regular maintenance yourself and cutting out the auto technician (hey!), but it’s likely that you don’t have the know-how to do all of the needed services that are associated with good vehicle maintenance. It’s probably a good idea to have an auto technician take a look at least once a year for a tune-up and check-up. We don’t bite, we promise.
- Comparison shop – This should be pretty obvious, but its a good idea to do some shopping around if and when you do require a major repair to your car. If you are in the Washington D.C. area, you can check out Repair Jungle (a website which allows you to submit a repair request and get estimates from area technicians). If you’re not, you have to do it the old-fashioned way. Either way, it’s crucial to make sure that you get the best price for any auto repair that you may need. Of course, if you have a particularly trusted auto technician (maybe the folks at Fort Collins Foreign Car Repair?), it may be work with someone you know and trust.
- Buy a car with a low cost of ownership – This is something that can really save you money when those auto repair needs eventually arise. You can use a site like Edmunds or Kelley Blue Book to calculate the cost of ownership for most any car. Some of the most affordable cars to own today are the Ford Focus, Toyota Camry, Volvo S40 and the Chevy Aveo. The truck with the lowest cost of ownership is the Toyota Tacoma.
There you have it. Now, go forth and save on auto repair.