5 Ways To Spend Less On Auto Repairs

    Posted by Ben Davidson about 4 months ago

    Cars are expensive to run. Once you add up the cost of insurance, tax, and fuel, you’re spending a lot every month. But repairs are by far the biggest cost that you have to cover. If your car breaks down or you’re in an accident that does some serious damage, you’ll be paying a mechanic a lot of money to fix it, especially if you end up going to a dishonest one. A single repair can land you in financial trouble if you don’t have the money to cover it, but you can’t really avoid it. If the car is broken and you need it, you’ll have to get it fixed whether you can afford it or not. That might mean borrowing money on credit cards which is never a good road to go down.


    But the cost of car repairs doesn’t have to be quite as high as you think it does. It’s always going to cost you, but you can make it a lot cheaper for yourself if you know what you’re doing. These are some of the best ways to cut the cost of car repairs.


    Make Somebody Else Pay


    In a lot of cases, you might not have to cover the cost of car repairs at all. If you’re in an accident, you can claim it on the insurance. If you claim on your own, your premiums are likely to go up so, even though you’re not paying for the repairs, it’s still costing you. However, if the accident isn’t your fault, there’s no need to pay for it at all. You can make a claim against the other driver and get their insurance to pay for it. If you’re going to do that, evidence is essential, so make sure that you know what to do in the immediate aftermath of an accident. Having a dash cam really helps here because you’ve got concrete evidence that it wasn’t your fault. You also need to take down all of the details of any damage to both cars and try to get some photos if you can.


    If you’re seriously injured in the accident, you might be entitled to even more money. Once you’ve dealt with the immediate aftermath of the accident, you should try to get in touch with a car accident lawyer to see whether you have a claim. Even if you can’t make an insurance claim, that compensation payout will more than cover the cost of any repairs that need doing.


    Understand Your Car


    If you do find yourself in a position where you have to cover the cost of repairs yourself, you need to find ways to make it cheaper. The first step is to understand your car. You don’t have to train as a mechanic, but you should read through the manual and learn about the basic workings of an engine and some simple repairs that you can do on your own. This is important because there are some mechanics out there that will try to rip you off by making you pay for work that doesn’t need doing or overcharging you for things. If you haven’t got a clue what you’re talking about, you don’t really have any way of disputing their price. But if you can go in there with a rough idea of what the problem is and how much it’s likely to cost, the mechanic will know that they can’t get one over on you. If they do come back with an overinflated price, you can simply tell them that you know it won’t cost that much to fix and you’ll take your business elsewhere.


    A lot of modern cars have a great diagnostics system on them. When something goes wrong, you’ll get an error code which you can put into their website to see what the issue is. If your car has this feature, make sure that you use it. If you already know what the problem is, there’s no way that the mechanic can start adding things on top to get more money out of you.


    Negotiate


    Most drivers tend to use the same mechanic for all of their repairs, which is fine if you’ve got a good one. But it’s not always the best way to save money. Instead, you should go to a few different mechanics and get a quote from them. Then you can compare and find the cheapest one. You can also go between them and negotiate the price down so you can use the mechanic that you want at the price that you want.


    Always Agree On A Price First


    Not getting a solid price before you hand over your car is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make. The mechanic might give you a ballpark figure but then when you come back to pick up the car, the price has suddenly doubled. If you want your car back, you’re going to have to pay it. That’s why it’s essential that you agree on a price first. Ask them for a breakdown of exactly what you’re paying for and then specify that you don’t want any more work doing apart from that. Always make sure that you get it in writing and keep a copy for yourself. That way, if they try to raise the price suddenly, you’ve got proof that they agreed on a lower price.


    Maintain Your Car Properly


    The easiest way to spend less on repairs is to avoid them in the first place. Maintaining your car properly is the best way to avoid any repairs. Often, large scale damage can be avoided if you fix smaller problems. A lot of repairs are the result of wear and tear which can often be unavoided. If you aren’t changing the oil and lubricant regularly enough, the moving parts will wear down a lot quicker than they otherwise would do. Doing these basic maintenance tasks on a regular basis will massively reduce the chance of any serious breakdowns.


    Car repairs don’t have to empty your bank account if you follow these tips to make them a lot cheaper.


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