Motorists across the UK are feeling the pinch more than ever. It is now estimated that the average cost of being a motorist in the UK, with a car valued under £13,000, comes in at £2,300 per year.
For those who are purse and wallet savvy, this article offers a few hints and tips that can help drive the costs of being a motorist down, making the joys of being a car-owner all the more palatable:
1. Be Fuel Efficient
Searching around the Internet for current fuel prices in your local area may only appear to save you a few pence per litre at the outset. Yet sites such as petrolprices.com can save you a fortune each year.
Those who are even more fuel savvy may wish to consider car share or pooling arrangements either with work colleagues, or by signing up to a local specialist group. These can be found with a simple Internet search, or by looking through an online or newspaper ad directory.
Relatively new on the scene is also that of the car club. This pay as you go approach is increasingly popular for occasional motorists.
2. Look After Your Motor
Saving pounds when it comes to preventative versus corrective maintenance for your car usually boils down to attention to detail and a bit of TLC.
Some vehicle failures and repair costs are simply unavoidable, but basic checks and management of fluids, tyres and general condition of the car can extend its life and preserve its value.
When the annual MOT comes round, not being one of the 40% of UK motorists that fail each year can help your bank balance too. Make sure you prepare in advance and run through checks to prevent failure. Shop around too and find the best deal look for test centres that dont offer repair services you will be much more likely to pass.
3. Compare Insurance
Many motorists now use online price comparison sites to obtain the best renewal premium each year. However, many motorists also accept their existing insurers renewal quotation without any question or negotiation attempt.
Annual premiums can increase by as much as 300%, and motorists cut short are usually those subscribed to a monthly direct debit plan so the end of the last premium rolls into the new one, and the insured motorist is oblivious to the huge cost saving potential that has just disappeared from sight.
Comparison sites are now incredibly advanced, yet very simple to use. Just a few minutes spent working out the best deal might be the best decision you made all year!
4. Drive Carefully
Driving at a constant of 50mph instead of 70mph can reduce fuel consumption by as much as 25%. Underinflated tyres can increase drag and use more fuel too as can unnecessary weight (in the form of general junk) in the boot of the car.
5. Do you really need the car for those short journeys?
Get some exercise and do your bit for the environment too. Very short journeys to the shops dont always warrant a car.
Now were not saying you need to be lugging the baby, pushchair and shopping to save a few pence (we certainly appreciate the cost doesnt always outweigh the benefit!), but the odd journey on foot here and there might just add up.
6. Lost Car Key Mitigation
Certain car cost prevention tactics should always be given some thought and consideration.
In the highly unfortunately event you lose, misplace, or have stolen from you, your car keys, the cost of replacement can be astronomical. This is especially true for newer cars with programmed Smartkeys, or for motorists who use their (very expensive) car dealer to arrange new keys.
For times when an auto locksmith is needed, search around and have a plan setup in advance. Lost car keys can be incredibly inconvenient yet some car locksmiths are able to help you gain access and provide new keys within an hour or two, and at a highly affordable rate.
About the Author: Nicholas Moores is a professional technology writer for Autokey Squad Auto locksmith & lost car keys specialist.