Ole’ Man Winter is Coming…..4 Budget Friendly Simple Winter Car Care Tips
Are you that driver that panics when any light on your dashboard of your vehicle comes on?
As the fierce winter weather is progressively approaches, making sure your vehicle is prepared for the unknown can make for a better winter season and prevent the panic attacks.
According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the winter of 2016–2017, we can expect temperatures to be much colder than last winter but still above normal.
We all depend on our car to get back and forth to work, chauffeur our children to their extracurricular activities, and take family trips. Therefore, it is best to keep up with the routine preventative maintenance of your car.
Owning a car can be expensive, however, it can become very expensive when the routine preventive maintenance is neglected.
According to the Tony Molla, Vice President of Communications at National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, “regular, routine maintenance can help improve your gasoline mileage, reduce pollution, and catch minor problems before they become big headaches.”
When the lights on the dashboard of your vehicle come on, do you call a mechanic?
It is a daunting task to get car repairs.
Do you feel that the auto mechanics, which are typically men, are always trying to get over on you.?
Do you find it hard to trust auto mechanics?
According to new study by AutoMD.com, women would rather go to the dentist than the auto repair service center.
In addition, at AutoMD.com they indicated that a whopping 83% of those surveyed say they have “felt” overcharged for vehicle service at the repair shop or dealership, a number that has remained stubbornly high over the past four years: in 2010, it was 88% and in 2012 85%.
How do you get over the feeling of being overcharged?
Well, knowledge is power!
Learn about the basic routine maintenance of your vehicle.
Be willing to assert your authority as a consumer and walk away when you don’t feel confident about the services.
Vehicles repair cost can sink any budget. Knowing to routine maintenance of your vehicle can minimize some of your financial strain of repairing cost.
Here are 4 ways to keep your budget a float:
- Read your car manual – knowing what those pretty lights mean on the dashboard is very helpful. When you know what the lights mean it could save you time and money. Just recently, my tire pressure light came on. I immediately went to the tire shop. The auto mechanic checked the pressure in my tires. One of the tires pressure was below the range. He put some air in the tire for me. Once I realized how simple it was, I have not gone back.
- Routine Oil Changes– I have a 2013 model car and it requires that I get an oil change every 10,000 miles. When I get an oil change they put a sticker on my windshield and my maintenance required light comes on. Based on January 2014 data from AutoMD.com, routine oil changes cost on average $120. Oil changes help keep your engine clean. Skipping on routine oil changes can cause your engine to malfunction and cost you on average $4000 to replace your engine.
- Replace the Air Filter– having a clean air filter can improve gas mileage. According to CarsDirect.com, for each gallon of fuel the engine burns, it requires up to 10,000 gallons of clean air, therefore, the air filter is important to helping the engine work properly. When the air filter is dirty there will be a decrease in gas mileage, which means that you will be at the gas pump more. I don’t know about you, but I don’t like visiting the gas station frequently. Changing the air filter is easy and cheap, I have changed my air filter. I went to my local auto retail store and told them the make and model of my car and I paid no more than $17 including tax or check your owner’s manual. I searched on YouTube how to change the air filter for my make and model and I did it. My dealership wanted to charge me $75 for labor and $19 for parts for a total of $94. I saved $77. Also, if you are not comfortable with changing it ask the salesperson to change it for you, they are happy to help. Majority of the salesperson at the auto retail stores are auto mechanics by trade.
- Replace Windshield Wiper Blades – ice, slush, and salt go hand in hand with winter. All or one of them will be on the windshield of your car this winter. Using the same windshield wiper blades from the summer for the winter is not safe. The heat can damage the rubber on the blades. Therefore, replacing your windshield wiper blades before winter will be wise. In addition, the grit and salt used in cold climates can wear out the rubber on the wiper blades quickly, according to Autos.com and it would be best to start the winter with some new wiper blades. Replacing the wiper blades is simple and something you can do yourself. You can purchase the blades at the local auto retail store or retail store auto department. At the auto retail store, tell the salesperson the make and model of your car and they will get you the correct wiper blades. If you go to your local retail store auto department, they have a book and/or computer device to help you find it or check your owner manual. I have changed my windshield wipers myself. The package that the blades come it has pictures for each step on how to change them. It was done in less than 15 minutes. I spent on average $20.
How much money have you spent on routine maintenance that you could have done yourself?
Have you ignored any of these 4 simple steps?
Which one of these 4 simple steps will you do yourself?