How to Save Money on Car Maintenance – Tips

Practicing good maintenance techniques for your car could end up saving you significant amounts of money.

Nowadays, most of us spend a ton of our day in a car whether we are driving for work, to work, for errands or for fun.

Finding a way to reduce the amount of driving you do and adopt good car maintenance habits will allow you save money on many car expenses.

Focus on the following 10 tips to save on car maintenance expenses:

Drive Less

Take More Time to Plan Out Driving

Learn How to Maintain Car

Don’t Push Car as Hard

Fill Up Air Pressure in Tires Consistently

Rotate Tires

Create A Car Maintenance Section in Budget

Stop Idling Car

Review Car Manual for Your Car’s Maintenance Requirements

Don’t Put Extra Oil in Car

The tips here will give you a chance at cutting down on your car expenses and save you significantly.

Through this post I will show how using certain tips will help you to learn how to save money on car maintenance and likely allow your car to last much longer.

Drive Less

Driving your vehicle less will save you significant money on your car expenses in the short run and in long run.

Reducing how much you drive is something that can be added to your routine easily through three key tips.

2 Cyclists
Ride Bike More

Focus on the following 3 tips to reduce how much you drive including Take Public Transit, Walk/Bike Ride More and Carpool to Work.

I have used all three of these tips to reduce the amount of driving I do by a lot. If you live in a medium to big city, then taking public transit could easily cut down on your driving.

There are often buses that run many times during the day and with a little extra planning you could work in taking one of these buses into your current routine.

Walking more and getting used to walking more could end up keeping you from driving as much.

You could ride your bike to work, your local grocery store or some other close store. You could even build your strength up so that you could ride your bike to and from work.

Carpooling with coworkers could be another way to save on gas and not be that hard to include in your current routine. This could be especially valuable if you are driving long distances for work.

Taking the time to incorporate one or more of these tips into your current routine is likely to save you money on many car expenses.

Take More Time to Plan Out Driving

If you plan out all of your errands for the day in one fell swoop, you could save yourself some wear and tear expenses on your car.

By doing all of your errands together you spend less on gas and end up driving less. Making a shopping list at home and sticking to that list is key to driving less.

Using that shopping list as a guide and thinking about which stores you will need to go to in order to get everything on the list could save you tons of time and money.

Car Washing
Learn How to Maintain Car

Learn How to Maintain Car

Understanding some basics for maintaining a car can help reduce car expenses and save money.

Do the following 3 tasks consistently:

  1. Clean Car Regularly
  2. Check the oil frequently
  3. Keeping Car Protected from Sun or Salt

Getting your car washed consistently will keep the car not only looking nicer but keep its body from breaking down.

If you go to a discount store, such as Target, you can find all the essential ingredients to wash your car at home.

I like to use a 3 gallon bucket and a few clean clothes for cleaning my car consistently.

By having all the car wash ingredients at home you will be able to consistently wash your car without racking up the added expense of going to a local car wash.

This could end of saving you significant amounts of money while also keeping the car looking cleaner too.

Also, by being able to wash your car at home you will not have to spend gas and energy driving to a local car wash spot.

Checking the oil in your car frequently is an easy step that can save you money. Always review your car’s manual for proper direction about checking the oil and adding new oil.

Keeping the car covered with a car cover or in a garage, will keep the car’s body from deteriorating.

Whether you use a car cover, sun shield for your windshield or something else, these items will protect the car from getting damaged.

I live near the coast and there is always salty air being blown onto the car’s surface. Keeping the car covered with a car cover helps reduce how much sun and salt air is blown against the car.

I have been using a sun shield for my windshield and it has keep the plastic in the car from breaking down and it keeps everything in the car cooler too.

Don’t Push Car as Hard

Not pushing the car as hard when you are driving will help reduce how much strain you are putting on the car and will save you some money.

This is something that I like to practice when I am driving because it can save tons of wear and tear from building up on the car.

Whenever I am in a hurry and driving fast, I take a moment to really think about why I am rushing and is it worth it. Almost every time I think about it, I slow down and stop rushing.

By not pushing the car as much you will not drain certain parts on the car including the tires, brakes and engine.

I have been able to get my tires to last longer thanks to not pushing the car as hard.

If you are prone to driving your car fast on turns, then I would try to reduce this particular activity while driving because this will wear out the tires faster.

Try to develop the following 4 habits:

  • Accelerating Gradually
  • Anticipate Traffic Ahead to Avoid Hard Stops
  • Using Cruise Control
  • Coasting Into Congested Traffic by Taking Foot Off the Gas Pedal

The more you adopt these habits into your driving the more you are likely going to save.

Not draining the brake pads primarily is achieved by not braking as hard and instead adopting a more gradual braking method of driving.

I love using cruise control because it has made driving much less demanding on my body and saved me money.

If your car has cruise control, definitely use it because this will allow you to still drive safely but without having to constantly have your right foot engaged during the whole drive.

Using the cruise control will allow you to not constantly think about how fast you are going, allow you to get a much smoother drive and save you money as your fuel economy will be improved.

The goal for not pushing the car as hard is to try your best to not be in as much of a hurry. If you are willing to implement this goal into your driving, then you are likely to save money on car expenses.

Fill Up Air Pressure in Tires Consistently

Checking the air pressure in your tires and filling them up when they are low will give you a chance to save money. Filling the air pressure up consistently will allow your vehicle to be more efficient and therefore you will spend less on gas.

Adding this to your getting gas routine could allow you to have properly inflated tires, which are more likely to last longer and save you money.

Big Tires
Rotate and Take Care of Tires

Rotate Tires

Making sure to rotate your car’s tires at least once a year will allow them to last potentially thousands of miles more.

Each of your tire’s tread can get worn down particularly fast if you do not get the tires rotated because there is different weight on the front axle compared to the rear axle.

Rotating the tires can also keep you from having to repair or replace more expensive parts of the car including the shock absorbers and the suspenion system.

If you are looking for more tips for saving money particularly on car insurance, read Most Affordable Car Insurance Companies.

Create A Car Maintenance Section in Budget

Creating a car maintenance section in your budget will help you be prepared for any significant car expenses that are likely to come up.

Setting aside a little money every month for each of the main car expenses will allow you to stay one step ahead of any issues that come up.

I like to create an area in my budget that includes the following 5 expenses:

  • Car Wash
  • Replacing Tires
  • Car Check Up
  • Car Registration
  • Car Insurance

Some of these expenses will be more regular where some of them might not become an expense for years.

But setting aside a little each month for each of these expenses will give you much better chance of staying on top of your car maintenance expenses.

I like to prepare for each of these expenses by determining when each of these expenses will occur and then dividing each expense by how many months before it will occur.

Car registration is a once a year expense so preparing for this expense requires dividing the total by 12.

Dividing your annual car registration amount by 12 will tell me what I need to save each month in order to be ready for the total 12 months from now.

$180 = Car Registration Yearly Total

$180/12 = $15 Car Registration Monthly Total

The replacing tire expenses could possibly go years between needing to be replaced, depending on how much you drive and the way you drive too.

For instance, if you don’t need to replace your tires for up to 2 years, you would take the total and divide it by 24 months.

$480 = Replacing All Tires Every 2 Years Total

$480/24 = $20 Replacing All Tires Every 2 Years Total

This calculation for this expense was assuming that you get all 4 tires replaced at the same time, which might not always be the case.

One big way to reduce how fast you go through tires is by getting them rotated at least once a year.

Creating a section in your budget dedicated to each of the significant car expenses will leave you prepared for when they do occur.

Stop Idling Car

Idling a car could be costing you car and be having the car run when it doesn’t need to be running. Letting the car have the engine turned is slowly causing the car to be worked and eventually this will start to cause other expenses to occur.

Newer cars now do not require very much energy to turn on or off so keeping a new car running is not saving you money.

New cars also do not need more than 30 seconds to warm up unless the temperature outside of the car is particularly cold.

Reduce how much you idle your car and you will start to save money on gas and many car expenses.

Blue Car
Review Car Maintenance Section in Car Manual

Review Car Manual for Your Car’s Maintenance Requirements

Car repair shops can often try to get you to pay for extra features and cleaning repairs that don’t actually need to happen.

Each car needs certain maintenance to continue to running properly but understanding exactly when your car needs a tune up is key.

Review the car manual to find the critical information about how often maintenance needs to get done so that you aren’t getting charged more at the car repair shop.

Don’t Put Extra Oil in Car

New cars are very efficient and they can go 10,000 miles before needing an oil change. It is more likely that you will over oil a newer car which could definitely hurt the car.

The extra oil could be pulled into the crankshaft and damage your engine. There can also be inconsistent oil pressure which can cause excess engine wear.

I also have the page in the car manual easily marked so that I can refer to it when I need to remember exactly how much oil I should be putting in.

Find What Tips Work Best for You

If you are willing to add some of these tips into your driving, then you are potentially going to save money both in the short run and the long run.

Picking the tips on this list that you are most likely to implement will give you the best chance of utilizing them sooner.

I hope that you enjoyed this post and found out some helpful information about how to save money on car maintenance.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will answer them as best as I can.

8 Replies to “How to Save Money on Car Maintenance – Tips”

  1. Hi Jessie,

    Thanks for your article, you gave some very good tips on how we can save on car maintenance expenses. A well-maintained car will definitely last longer.

    Your points are well taken, I am guilty for not checking the air in my tires. Driving less will do a lot of good for a car.
    I believe that some people just drive because they have a car.

    I remember a friend who before she got a car said, she was not going drive unless it was necessary. However, all of that changed when she got a car, she was everywhere.

    Taking Public Transit is a good idea if you live in an area where they run on a regular basis.

    Thanks for taking the time to provide such extensive information on how we can save money if we do the right things with the maintenance our cars.

    Take care

  2. Hi Jesse,
    Thanks for your sharing some great tips and advice. I drive a 10year old car, and I know I need to look after it better. Just some simple day to day looking after makes a difference, such as checking the oil which I often forget to do. Last week I had to have the brakes done, and only a few days ago my gear lever snapped as I was at a junction. The car is currently at the garage being repaired. The total cost is likely to be around £500.
    Thanks again.

    1. The car expense can have many areas where money can be saved. Carpooling and sharing the responsibility of driving is a great way to cut down on this expense.
      I am happy that you liked this post!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *