Save money on car repairs by getting independent

Having your car fixed at an independent car shop will probably bring huge savings, but it’s important to make sensible choices otherwise you risk doing more harm than good. Let’s check out some great tips that will help you in car repairs.

Having your car fixed at an independent car shop will probably bring huge savings, but it’s important to make sensible choices otherwise you risk doing more harm than good. A lot of people assume that going independent is the best choice, and although it is, if you’re not careful you’ll end up paying more for parts and changes that your vehicles doesn’t even need. Whether we’re talking about mechanics trying to do unnecessary work on your vehicle or about mechanics that don’t have the enough expertise to fix your car, there’s no doubt that saving money on repairs as an independent can be a risky endeavor. And still, if you’re cautious you’ll end up saving a lot of money. Let’s check out some great tips that will help you in this situation:

Find an independent mechanic

It’s definitely not easy to find a competent independent mechanic to get your car fixed on a budget, but it’s something worth a try. Authorized dealerships are expensive for various reasons, and although their work is exquisite, this doesn’t mean independent contractors can’t be just as good. As a matter of fact, a lot of mechanics choose to stay independent because they can make more money than if they got a job in a dealership. Don’t underestimate the great power of word of mouth, and start by asking around friends and peers. Another great way of finding a dependable mechanic is to check Yelp reviews, forums, and auto websites. Sooner or later you’ll definitely find someone you can trust.

Avoid unnecessary car maintenance

Drivers don’t have to change their vehicle’s oil every 4,000 miles especially if your car is not that old. Believe it or not, synthetic motor oils have the capacity to last for more than 1 year, even more if you’re not driving excessively. Avoiding redundant car maintenance is an excellent way of saving up a couple of hundred dollars. Remember not to get fooled by dealerships and mechanics constantly underlying that your vehicle needs some routine maintenance done. They usually say that to persuade you to spend more, and thus you’ll eventually shell out a lot than you expected. 

Preventive maintenance

Let’s not confuse preventive with redundant car maintenance. Preventive upholding helps you save money in the long run. Checking tire pressure, scheduled inspections, and periodic oil changes are a must. Proper maintenance ensures that your car will last longer and that nothing bad can happen all of a sudden. Basically, you can save thousands of dollars and in exchange you’ll have to pay a couple of tens for preventive maintenance. Some tips to help you save even more money:

·         Perform your own car inspection – checking tire pressure is simple, and even if you don’t know how it’s done, you can always ask

·         Check fluids – learn how to change anti-freeze, coolant, power steering, wiper fluid;

·         Inspect your serpentine belts and replace them if necessary

·         Check your car battery and if necessary clean the contacts

·         Replace your wiper if you notice they’re not performing well anymore – blurry vision can lead to terrible accidents

·         Check your tires periodically – make sure they’re balanced adequately; don’t forget to check the alignment too

·         Changing spark plugs – in case your car’s spark plugs are covered in build-up or are worn, then you’re engine is not functioning at its best; eventually you’ll end up paying more on fuel and in worst case scenarios your car might break down.

Purchase car parts on your own

A great way to save money on car repairs is to shop for your own car parts. It will automatically cut out the mechanic or dealership who acts like a middle man, and thus end up paying a lot less for those pieces. Websites and store locators are excellent places to look for cheaper car parts. Mechanics don’t advertise nor support the idea of buying parts on your own, and then bring them to the auto shop for the installation. That’s because they’ve got nothing to gain. Furthermore, if you don’t have enough experience to install the parts yourself, you can always head over to a junk yard and ask someone there for help. The cost will be a lot lower than if you had gone to an authorized mechanic.

Consider buying second-hand car parts

Start looking for used car parts in your area. Junkyards are great places to start, as well as local sellers who market used parts. General prices are usually extremely low, so it’s best to go with an expert and make sure you’re not getting ripped off. Call the junkyard in advance and ask about the piece you need to save yourself a trip. Also, you should also ask about terms of the sale, if there’s any warranty involved, and so on. Rather than risk visiting that junkyard for nothing, talk about as many details as possible on the phone. After you’ve decided to spend money on second-hands parts, don’t forget to check the pieces thoroughly. Make sure they work and if you’re in doubt, ask for advice from a friend who knows more about cars than you.

Saving important sums of cash on car repairs is not something impossible to achieve. Yet, it’s vital that you get informed prior to going independent. Authorized dealerships are expensive; they charge extra for the car pieces and they usually persuade drivers to perform unnecessary maintenance as well (for a certain price, of course). That’s certainly something you can avoid if you choose to repair your car yourself, or get help from places that are more affordable.

Believe it or not, second-hand car parts are not that bad, especially if we’re talking about conventional pieces such as wipers, disk brakes, lights, and additional parts that are not vital. Every driver’s priority should be to save money, so if authorized mechanics and famous dealerships are not within easy reach, there’s no reason to panic as there are great alternatives you can take into account.

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