Automobile repairs can be incredibly expensive, even if you shop around and get estimates. However, there are a number of ways that you can reduce the amount of money you have to spend to have your car or truck fixed, and here are the top five.
Buy Your Own Parts
Most repair shops, whether they are mechanical or paint and body, make the majority of their money from labor costs, which is why automobile repair shops will usually allow you to purchase your own parts and install them for you. When a repair shop purchases a replacement part for your vehicle, they usually buy one from the manufacturer and mark the sale price up. This means that you have the ability to purchase OEM parts for your vehicle at a discount, saving you money. It is important to note that shops may not offer warranties on anything but installation work if you supply your own parts; however, your part should come with a manufacturer’s warranty anyway.
Choose Refurbished or Aftermarket Parts
In addition to purchasing your own parts to cut down on the cost of repair work, you can also buy refurbished used or new aftermarket replacement parts for your vehicle. For example, if you own a Holden Barina, a new aftermarket air condenser is a third of the cost of a new OEM air condenser, and used parts usually run about half of the cost of new ones. The advantage of refurbished used parts is that they generally still come with warranties and they have been tested for defects. Aftermarket parts vary in quality, but a large number of them are essentially identical to OEM versions. Doing research and finding used or aftermarket parts can save you hundreds of dollars on the cost of replacement parts.
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Find Out How To Do Minor Repairs Yourself
In addition to finding low cost replacement parts for your vehicle, you can also find a lot of excellent information on the Internet regarding how to identify and resolve a number of small repair issues. Along with articles and websites that provide instructions on how to replace headlights or change your tires, you can also find a vast array of YouTube videos that will show you step-by-step how to flush your radiator or check your transmission fluid. While it is important to keep in mind that large jobs are usually best left to professionals, you can save a lot of money by doing your own small replacements and upkeep.
Keep Up With Maintenance
Maintenance on your vehicle is a crucial part of preventing repair issues from developing. If your oil and fluids are not cleaned, changed or filled regularly, it can have a detrimental effect on your car, increasing your need for repairs and reducing the lifespan of your vehicle. In addition to ensuring that all of your vehicle’s systems are kept running smoothly, maintenance can also ensure that your automobile is running properly. Being able to diagnose small issues before they become large ones can save you on repair costs.
Have Your Vehicle Looked At As Soon As You Notice a Problem
Finally, many people ignore automotive problems, hoping that they will go away in time. However, this almost never happens, and ignoring automotive issues only allows them to get worse and more expensive to repair. This is also why it is important to have your vehicle taken to a repair shop if any of your warning lights come on, even if your vehicle is not exhibiting any signs of trouble. While it may not always be cheap to fix a mechanical issue, ensuring that they are fixed quickly can dramatically reduce the amount of money it costs to do so.