Enjoying Your Car and Saving Money

Cars tend to break down at the worst possible times. Sometimes they will break when you are on your way to an important meeting or when you are running low on money. This gets very frustrating and the older your car gets or the worse you take care of it, the more often this will happen. There is however a fairly easy solution to this. If you learn the basics of how a car works and what kind of care it needs then you can keep it in better shape and keep money in your pockets. The first thing you should learn about is changing the oil. This is one of the simplest preventative maintenance tasks you can perform on your car.
It is also an extremely important one. A basic oil changes start around $40 assuming you go to a repair shop or service center such as Meineke or Jiffy Lube, instead of a dealership. This will only cover the cheaper oil and filter, along with a visual inspection of critical parts. You can do this at home for around $20 and about 2 hours of your time but with much better results. You can get higher quality oil and filters, which will help extend the life of your vehicle, and the longer you keep a vehicle the more money you save by not having to buy a new car.
Also, while you are changing your own oil, you can check the other critical systems in your vehicle. If you take the extra time to really check these systems instead of just glancing at them, like they would at the service centers, you will have a much better idea of how worn out the parts are getting. If you know how much wear and tear is on your parts you will know when to replace them and when they can wait to be replaced. These systems include brake pads and rotors; fluid levels, such as power steering, transmission, brakes, and coolant; and your tires. Another thing you can do to your car is a tune up.

Regular tune ups will help your car get better miles per gallon. This will you save money at the pump and help avoid breaking down on the road. Things to replace during a tune up would be spark plugs, spark plug wires, air filters, and engine belts. You should also check your service manual and see when they recommend getting services performed on your car. If you are close or over that mileage, you should check those parts. I would recommend that you know what common problems occur on your car as well, so you can be aware of signs of a problem or at least be prepared for that happening to your car.
When fixing anything on your car I find it is extremely helpful to have a repair manual to reference in case you need a little extra guidance or do not know if something needs to be replaced. They run about $15 at your local auto parts store, and will tell you the correct way to fix almost anything on your car. Having a professional manual will save you lot of time by making sure it is done correctly the first time. These are just some of the basics that you can do to your car. Once you get comfortable doing work on your car you will be able to tackle bigger projects, like major damage, or adding something custom to your car.
A quick search online will help you find tons of information on car repairs, from the basics all the way to crazy custom engine swaps. For most common cars there are online forums where people from all over the world come to talk about specific cars. These are always full of tons of information about that specific car. You can post up a question and members of the forums are always happy to help fellow car enthusiasts. Once you start working on your car and see firsthand how simple it is to do most car repairs in your driveway you will wonder why you ever paid someone else to do it for you.

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