Let’s face it. Car repairs can be frustrating and annoying. In fact, if you rely on your car, just like many other people, for transportation or business-related activities and it breaks down, then you’re looking at other expensive means of transportation not to mention the inconvenience that comes with it.
Repairing your car is the other solution and sudden problems can put a large hole in your budget. It gets even worse if your car is old because this will cost you even more. The good news is there are several ways you can save money on auto repairs regardless of whether your car is new or moving on crutches.
How to Save Money on Auto Repair
1. Get Proactive
The saying prevention is better than cure not only applies in medicine but also in the auto industry. Proper maintenance is the first step toward saving on auto repairs. Take a look at some of the preventive tasks you can do to maintain your car and keep it in top form while also saving on issues that may arise from lack of it:
● Check Fluid Levels Regularly
When fluid levels drop, it’s only a matter of time until disaster strikes. Therefore, it’s important to check on fluid levels often. In fact, car experts recommend checking on these levels every morning before driving off.
Refill if low and if the problem persists, have the affected component checked by a professional mechanic. This will prevent further damage to associated parts and an even expensive repair.
● Check the Tires’ Pressure
At first thought, under-inflated tires appear harmless. However, what many drivers don’t know is that under-inflation increases the rate of wear and tear on the tires and degrades the suspension system. In the long run, this will take a toll on the gas mileage.
● Replace Worn-Out Brake Pads
First off, ignoring worn-out brake pads is dangerous and can cause an accident. Second, this will damage the entire braking system and other components. The task will only take a few minutes and it’s only a few bucks to get the brake pads replaced.
2. Take Advantage of Warranties
You may know that most car parts come with a lifetime or limited warranty. Often, you’ll get this information when purchasing a car or a spare part and will be on the receipt and the store where you bought it from.
However, many car owners fail to take advantage of these warranties – something that may cause their wallets a lot of discomforts. Did you know you can also get warranties on labor? Yes, the option exists but drivers fail to take advantage of it.
For example, you can purchase a lifetime warranty for repair work such as wheel alignment for a few bucks and save hundreds to thousands of dollars on wheel alignment, especially if you live in cities that have massive potholes.
The main purpose of having a warranty is to save you money in the future. Therefore, it’s wise to spend a bit more on warranties now and save thousands of dollars in the future. Also, make sure you keep the records safe because you’ll need them as proof when you visit the store.
3. Get a Trusted Mechanic
Look at your mechanic as your personal doctor. A misdiagnosis means you won’t get better and you’ll end up paying more to get better. The same happens with cars. If you end up with an unqualified mechanic, chances are you’ll drive off with the same problem despite paying him to fix it.
Therefore, it’s important to search for a qualified mechanic. In fact, some professionals only deal with specific car parts such as air conditioning, transmissions, or engine repair.
4. Ask Another Mechanic
It’s difficult to find a skilled and trusted mechanic. If this is the case for you, consider getting a second opinion from another mechanic after receiving a repair estimate from one mechanic.
Of course, there is a good chance that the second opinion may vary slightly from the first but it shouldn’t be too off. However, if the total cost of repair is way lower than the first quote, then congratulations. You’ve just saved a lot of money. Getting a second opinion from another mechanic allows you to get a fair assessment.
5. Turn Down Dealership Services
This option is suitable for car owners who have tap flowing with cash or if the car is on its death bed. Until either option falls on you, stay away from services offered by dealerships. The reason as revealed by a Popular Mechanics Q&A with a service manager at an undisclosed dealership, your bill will contain additional charges.
While this may be the case, car experts recommend these service centers for one reason. The dealership’s mechanics are knowledgeable in a specific make, which means they understand the car better than independent mechanics.
6. Take Advantage of Online Coupons and Discounts
The truth is a faulty car can be frustrating, especially if the car is your primary means of transport or you use it for business. While a rental car, loaner vehicles, and carpooling will still get you to work, it’ll be a great inconvenience and sometimes too much money stress leads to a no credit check auto repair.
Don’t sit on the sides. Scour the internet for online discounts and coupons that can save you money on auto repairs. You can also consider looking for physical coupons at auto facilities. If you’re a member of one, the store will send a coupon to your mailbox. You can also grab a Groupon and other exclusive deals.
7. Establish a Good Relationship with Your Mechanic
Assuming you have a trusted mechanic in your corner, you want to establish a good relationship with him. Not because they are skilled and are good at what they do but because you may have a faulty car and no money.
If you’re a loyal customer with a solid relationship with your mechanic, chances are they may postpone payment until end month. In addition, they’ll use extra products to tweak your car at no extra cost.
8. Reduce Core Charges
Recycling is a common process in every industry including the auto industry. Many car parts such as batteries can be recycled. Such parts that can be rebuilt are known as cores. The next time you visit the garage, make sure you carry the worn-out part along to avoid a core deposit or core charge.
In some cases, you may be able to cover the cost of your entire purchase simply by returning the core and avoiding the core charge, although this will only cover part of the cost.
Most of the car problems can be avoided by being proactive with maintenance and this will go a long way in saving you a lot of money and frustration associated with car repairs. Having said that, there are unfortunate instances where the problem requires a professional look.
With this article, you should have enough tips to help you save money on car repairs the next time to visit the garage.