Tips from Used Car Advisor

Car Advisor Tamotsu Todoroki

Hi, this is Tamotsu Todoroki. I am a car advisor of
I write an online column every week to take care of your vehicle. My column is all about something useful and practical for your vehicle. Please have a look once to keep your car in good condition.


How To Reduce Vehicle Maintenance Costs - Vol.252

Maintaining a vehicle is of critical importance to ensure its longevity and to ensure that it remains safe to operate at all times. As such, you should carry out regular checks to every aspect of the car in an effort to keep on top of any potential issues and reduce your overall maintenance costs. After all, a problem spotted early is a problem that is more easily resolved and if you leave things too long a small problem can become a large problem that affects other aspects of the vehicle. The following tips will all help to ensure that you spend less on vehicle maintenance, allowing you to spend more time enjoying your car.

Buy quality
It's a fairly simple concept. Buying higher quality goods generally means that they will last longer and will require less maintenance. If a part of your vehicle does need to be replaced do some research to find out which part is best suited for the job, either by asking around or checking online, and invest in the highest quality parts that you can afford.

Despite incurring a slightly higher initial cost, in the long-run that investment will pay off and you will find that the car experiences fewer mechanical issues.

Conduct regular checks
A vigilant car owner is a frugal car owner. As such, maintaining a regular schedule of quick maintenance checks will allow you to spot a number of issues early, which reduces the possibility that those issues can spread to other areas while also reducing the amount you need to spend to fix the problem.

Around about 50% of all vehicle issues can be spotted early if you maintain a vigilant routine of checks so be sure to have an idea of the lifespan of each part of the vehicle and keep a note of when a part may be nearing the end of its usefulness. If nothing else, the peace of mind gained from ensuring that your car is safe to run is as important as the money you could save on maintenance.

Learn about your vehicle
This ties into conducting checks quite neatly in that many people simply don't know enough about their vehicle to conduct checks and will panic if anything goes wrong, no matter how minor it may be.

Your vehicle is an extension of you and you should treat it as such. Read the owner's manual so that you have a good idea of what your car needs to ensure it continues to run and do some individual research where necessary to learn about areas of the car where DIY fixes are simple and far less costly than simply taking it into the garage. With a bit of mechanical knowledge you can save yourself a ton of time and money.

Keep your fluids topped up
Oil, petrol, water, coolant and brake fluids are all important to the proper operation of your vehicle. Running low on one can cause issues with any number of important mechanical parts and will lead to you breaking down should you run out entirely.

Keep an eye on any gauges that demonstrate how much of each fluid is currently in your car and be sure to top each one up on a regular basis. Furthermore, try to keep a small stock of each fluid in the trunk of the car so that you have something to lean on should you encounter an emergency situation.

It may sound simple but many car owners simply forget to keep an eye on the basics, which can lead to them running into problems that are otherwise easily remedied. After all, there are few things more embarrassing than having to incur a call out charge for a mechanic when all you've done is run out of petrol.