The following is a guest post on behalf of Cheap Car Insurance
For many households, car related expenses, especially in the event of
an older vehicle, account for a significant portion of their monthly
expenses. While many of these expenses or completely necessary to
maintain overall vehicle safety and performance, the amount that is
spent can be easily reduced by following a few simple steps.
1. Avoid Dealerships for Minor Repairs.
Incidental repairs and maintenance can easily be accomplished by
locally owned and operated repair shops. Locally owned business
generally have fewer overhead costs when compared to dealerships and
can therefore offer better prices when it comes to minor or
inconsequential repairs. Additionally, many locally owned businesses
are often willing to offer discounts to repeat customers, and may
offer coupons or other seasonal discounts.
2. Utilize Dealerships for Major Issues.
Major vehicle repairs have an increased level of difficulty and
intricacy than less severe issues. Smaller, locally owner repair shops
see vehicles of a wide range of makes, models, and years. While they
can easily diagnose and repair minor issues, larger problems often
require the specific knowledge dealership repairman have developed by
working the on the same brands of car over and over.
3. Develop Your Own Maintenance Schedule.
Manufacturer advised maintenance schedules are often designed in order
to maximize dealership profits. Most car owners are having routine
maintenance performed on their cars more frequently then is necessary
for peak efficiency. For example, regularly checking overall oil
levels and color is a more effective way of determining the need for
an oil change then simply having it done every 3,000 miles. Driving
conditions and vehicle requirements are a far better indicator of
maintenance requirements then a generic timeframe.
4. Fix Small Issues Before They Become Large Issues.
While something minor like regular tire rotation may seem trivial, it
actually helps prevent uneven wear, which can lead to uneven stress,
which can lead to a front-end misalignment etc. The longer that a
specific issue is ignored the more potential damage it can inflict on
related systems within the vehicle. Additionally, almost every item on
a car is cheaper to repair than it is to replace. A windshield may
cost as much as $500, while windshield repair is available in most
cases for as little as $100.
5. Review Insurance Rates Frequently.
Auto insurance is an extremely competitive industry. While you may
have feelings of loyalty or happiness towards a local insurance agent,
at the end of the day, it is a business relationship and you should
not feel guilty switching carriers. By examining or comparing cheaper auto insurance
rates on a annual or biannual basis you can often save hundreds of
dollars a year.