Eight Ways To Save Money On Car Repairs

by Hank Coleman

You can save money on car repairs.I hate taking my car to the mechanic to get repairs. I always worry that I’m going to be overcharged for the repairs needed to fix my car. I have to admit that I am not mechanically inclined in the least little bit. My best friend and I tried to change my oil one time in high school, and we quickly gave up after accidently dumping several quarts of oil on his parents’ driveway. Even if you are not knowledgeable about taking your car to the mechanic, there are several ways that you can save money on car repairs. If you educate yourself a little bit about the process and different ways to save money on car repairs, then you will feel better about taking your car to the mechanic and confident that you are receiving the best value on your repairs.

Eight Ways To Save Money On Car Repairs

1.    Shop Around For Repairs – If you are faced with an expensive repair, it may help you save money on car repairs if you shop around. Most people do not think to get multiple estimates for car repairs, but there is a reason that the government requires three different bids in most cases before they award a contract. You are more likely to receive a more accurate quote on the price of your repair if you shop around and receive multiple quotes for the repairs.

 2.    Skip Unnecessary Maintenance – You do not need to change your oil every 3,000 miles. That is the old rule of thumb that no longer applies to most modern cars thanks to technology advances that have been made. Many synthetic motor oils can last for a year or more between oil changes Delaying unnecessary maintenance like excessive oil changes save you money will save you money on car repairs.


 3.    Consider Preventative Maintenance – You have heard time and time again that you can save money on gas by changing the way that you drive. The same is true for maintenance as well. Preventative maintenance can save you a lot of money in the long run. Do you keep up with all of the recommended maintenance on your car? While it may seem like a hassle, it can save you money in costly big repairs. Changing your oil regularly is the best way to prevent catastrophic damage to your car’s engine.

 4.    Ask For Referrals – You wouldn’t pick your doctor or a lawyer by thumbing through the Yellow Pages, and you shouldn’t pick your car mechanic that way either. The best way to find a great mechanic and to save money on car repairs is to get a referral. Which repair shop do your friends use? That is a great way to find a good one you can trust. You can also find reviews of repair shops on websites like Yelp. Or, you can always poll your Twitter followers or your friends on Facebook too.

5.    Get Your Own Code Reader – Have you ever wondered what the error code displayed in your car means? If you had your own error code reader, you would know exactly what was causing your check engine light to come on. If you already know what is wrong with your car when you take it into the mechanic, you can head off any needless repairs before they even start.

6.    Surf The Web For Tools – There are a lot of great tools and websites out there to help you learn the cost of certain repairs. Wise Bread has a great list of six tools to save you money on car repairs. They list some great websites like RepairPal, DriverSide, and AllDataDIY that can help you become more familiar with car repairs, what to expect, what they cost, and other information. The more information that you know will help you feel more comfortable in the repair shop and help you save money on car repairs.

7.    Find Your Own Parts – One way to save money on car repairs is to purchase your own parts. This will essentially cut out the dealership or mechanic who is acting like a middle man. There are many websites and even stores like Autozone where you can find cheaper car parts than purchasing them at a dealership or service department. Many mechanics do not advertise the fact that you can purchase your own parts and bring them to them to install. Another great option for people with a little mechanical skill is to head to your local junk yard to find your own parts there for a fraction of the cost of a new part. To save the most money on your car parts there bring your own tools to pull the parts from cars in the salvage yard.Do It Yourself and Save at AutoZone

8.    Find A Mechanic On The Side – Do you know a mechanic? Do you know someone who is the classic shady tree mechanic? You might find a great deal to save money on car repairs by offering a local mechanic a little bit of side work. Like with referrals, you may be able to find someone who knows someone who is looking for a little extra income. This can be a great opportunity for you and the mechanic.

What about you? How do you save money on car repairs? Did I miss any good tips? Leave a comment below and let us know.

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About Hank Coleman

Hank Coleman is the founder of Money Q&A, an Iraq combat veteran, a Dr. Pepper addict, and a self-proclaimed investing junkie. He has written extensively for many nationally known financial websites and publications. Hank holds a Master’s Degree in Finance and is currently pursuing his Certified Financial Planner credentials. Email him directly at Hank[at]MoneyQandA.com.


Hank Coleman has written 526 articles on Money Q&A. Learn more about Money Q&A on Twitter @MoneyQandA and @HankColeman.


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