Pocket Extra Cash By Avoiding These Silly Car Wastes

by Steven on September 3, 2012

Are you spending too much money on silly car wastes? Even if you treat your car like a loyal pet, you can probably find ways to treat your car well without indulging in wasteful car-related expenses. Cars can easily make us act irrationally, but that doesn’t mean we have to succumb to spending money that neither helps us or our cars that we love. Here are some tips on avoiding wastes and saving money on your car maintenance.

Do you fill your car with premium gas?

If you think that buying premium gas is the only way to go with your car, maybe it’s time to reevaluate. In these days of record high gas prices, you should make sure that you are not overspending on gasoline. Generally speaking, you will be OK simply by buying the cheapest gasoline that doesn’t cause your car’s engine to knock. Many people purchase expensive premium gasoline because they think of it as a special treat that will help their car run better and longer. In most cases, however, octane will merely help prevent a knock, but it won’t make your car immune to other problems.

Aggressive oil change schedules

Many people change their oil more frequently than is actually necessary. There are many tune-up chains and auto repair businesses that advise 3,000 mile oil changes. In fact, most car manufacturers recommend 5,000, 7,500 or longer intervals between oil changes. Get to know your car and your manufacturer’s recommendations and follow these rather than the oil schedule recommended by your mechanic.

Using the dealer for all your car maintenance needs

While it may seem simpler and even safer at times, chances are that you are overpaying on repairs and maintenance by taking your car directly to the dealer. Save money by finding a good, reliable independent mechanic. Dealer prices and parts are often inflated. Don’t be afraid to comparison shop, even if it may be a little inconvenient or time-consuming.

Learn to change a flat tire

If you don’t already know how to do it, make it a point to learn to change a flat tire. Not only will you save hundreds of dollars in case that you should get a flat, you will probably also save a lot of time. Who wants to wait around for a half hour or more in the heat or cold for somebody to come change your tire, when there is a very good chance that you can do it yourself? If you’re afraid to learn, find a trusted friend to teach you. Practice in your garage or yard until you have it down, or even take a basic auto maintenance class if they are offered in your area.

Scrupulously avoid the ten dollar car wash

Drive by any car wash and see how many people are waiting in a long line, just for a bucket of gray water or an overpriced professional car wash. Nothing shows that you care about your car than giving it a good regular cleaning on your own. Invest in the proper equipment (a bucket, blade, soap, water, dry towel) and see how nice it can be to get a good clean for a lot less. Keep a small vacuum cleaner on hand to pick up stray dust, dirt and crumbs from the interior.

Don’t jump to conclusions

Many car owners make the mistake of buying a whole new set of tires when what the car really needs is new shocks. Or you perhaps you misinterpret a brake squeal as a call for new brakes. In many cases, especially if you are not on schedule for replacements, these may be symptoms of smaller troubles. A brake squeal could also mean that you may need new rotors or pads. Make sure to investigate thoroughly and keep records of all maintenance so that you are not prone to jumping to conclusions.

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