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6 simple ways to help you spend less on car repairs

piggy bank and cars

Although car repairs may sometimes be unavoidable, what may be avoidable is having to break the bank and dip into your savings to pay them. 

Buying a low-cost aftermarket warranty for cars (also known as an extended car warranty) is a simple way to be covered if anything ever goes wrong with your car. There are also other simple things you can do to prevent a sudden mechanical breakdown in the first place.

Remember that improving your spending habits comes from being prepared. If you’re looking to spend less on car repairs, here are some great tips to consider.

1. Know basic information about your car

You don’t have to read your car owner’s manual meticulously from cover to cover, but it’s important for you to know basic things about your car. 

All too often people fail to understand basic things about their own vehicle and they end up unknowingly causing car repairs. In the car owner’s manual, you’ll find this information:

  • Basic and key features of your car and how to use them
  • What the dashboard warning lights mean
  • Best driving practices
  • How to deal with emergencies
  • Basic maintenance procedures

2. Pay attention to dashboard lights

Each car manufacturer will have their own version of the specific car symbols that light up on your dashboard. You should know what these symbols mean and know what to do about them if they turn on. You should pay attention to all lights, but be aware that they aren’t all something you have to worry about. 

Some dashboard lights are simple reminder lights that don’t signal anything serious while some lights signal something you should check out immediately. 

Read our recent blog: What do your car’s dashboard lights mean?

3. Do preventative car maintenance

Cars are built to last you a long time, but they won’t last long if you don’t do your part and take good care of it. 

Do your best to follow your regular car maintenance schedule as stated in your car owner’s manual. This is not only a proactive way to keep your car in great shape so you ultimately spend less on car repairs, it’s also a sure way to improve your gas mileage. 

What are some examples of preventative car maintenance?

Some examples of preventative car maintenance are:

  • Regular oil changes (around every 5,000 miles for most cars)
  • Transmission checks
  • Battery checks
  • Brake inspections
  • Tire inspections

4. Learn Do-it-yourself car repairs

From a simple oil and filter change to a tire rotation, you’ll end up saving yourself hundreds of dollars if you learn to do simple car repairs yourself in your own garage or driveway. Rather than taking your car to the mechanic, here are some of the easier car tasks that you can learn to do:

  • Changing your brake pads
  • Changing the battery
  • Changing the spark plugs
  • Replacing your headlights or taillights
  • Fixing a chipped windshield

Note: Doing simple DIY car repairs does have its downsides: 1) It takes up your time. 2) You could do things wrong and create a worse repair. Make sure you’re well informed before you decide to do any repairs yourself.

Are you looking for a mechanic you can trust? Here are some tips to find a trustworthy mechanic.

5. Buy cheaper car parts online

Online you will find hundreds of car-part shops where you can find parts that are much cheaper than if you bought in-store or through a dealership. If you have the time and patience to look for parts on your own, you can save a lot of money.

Whether it’s through Amazon, eBay, Craigslist or an official online auto part retailer, use caution. Be sure you check reviews and the Better Business Bureau (if possible). Also, purchase parts with a credit card company that can reverse the charges in case the parts never arrive or they arrive in bad condition. 

6. Invest in Vehicle Repair Protection

A month-to-month subscription that covers your car’s expensive repairs is a really convenient option that saves you money in the long-run. Most car repairs today cost around $600, and the more expensive repairs (like a transmission replacement) can cost you upwards of $3,800. Imagine having protection that quickly covers the repair bill? It’s simple. An aftermarket warranty for used cars or vehicle service contract will keep your budget under control and keep you on the road driving worry-free. has created vehicle breakdown coverage that is simple, trustworthy and affordable. Transforming the extended car warranty marketplace through technology and transparency, offers a full suite of worry-free, no haggle car care plans through low-cost, 100% online, monthly subscriptions that drivers can sign up for in less than five minutes. Get an instant quote today!