Have you ever wondered how you can save money on car maintenance and repairs? The truth is you can save thousands of dollars on your vehicle if you simply repair your own car, which not only eliminates pricey labor fees, but can increase your own understanding and appreciation for your vehicle. Here are some benefits and reasons why you should learn to repair your own car.
The Benefits of Repairing Your Own Car
There are many benefits to learning how to repair your own car, including mental and physical. As previously mentioned, learning to repair your own car can save you a lot of money since the most expensive part of car repairs or maintenance is actually the labor. You can easily eliminate the price of labor by fixing your own car, which leaves having to for only the cost of the new parts. Check online for recycled auto parts for the best prices. Unless you need a major part replaced, car parts are often inexpensive.
Another benefit of repairing your own car is increasing your car’s performance. If you learn how to repair your own car, you will learn when certain parts become broken and need repair. This way, you can repair your own car right away, rather than being completely unaware and further damaging your car by driving it. Learning to repair your own car will prevent the negligence that damages your vehicle because you will not leave it in the state of needing repairs.
Saving You Money
One of the most important benefits of repairing your own car is that it will save you a ton of money, in many ways actually. First off, a car that is well maintained will operate better and more efficiently, resulting in improved gas mileage, which saves you money in fuel costs. If your car’s engine is not properly maintained or poorly tuned, it can actually burn up to 50% more gas. In addition, regularly changing your vehicle’s oil, maintaining proper tire pressure, and regularly changing filters will also help improve fuel economy. To find out how often you should perform these maintenance tasks, check the manufacturer’s recommended schedule for service.
Learning to maintain your own car will also prevent the need for major repairs and replacements of parts, which will save you money. If you are looking to save even more money on parts, you may be able to find some at an auto salvage yard. For instance, the life expectancy of a car battery is usually two to three years. However, you can extend the life of your car battery as well as other features by having them checked and maintained routinely. It is not advisable to hold off until these parts are unable to be fixed and need to be replaced.
Oftentimes when a vehicle needs maintenance or repair, it is not obvious to the owner. Minor accidents and even speed bumps can result in unseen damage, so it is important to be able to inspect your vehicle and know what to look for. Some parts of the vehicle you should keep a watchful eye on are the brakes, suspension, axle, steering, clutch, transmission, and windshield wipers. The American Automobile Association provides a plethora of reliable information on how to maintain your vehicle’s exterior as well as what is under the hood. This information will also help you determine which repair and maintenance tasks you can do yourself, and which ones are best handled by a mechanic shop equipped with the necessary tools and trained professionals. In fact, in the United States, there are over 230,000 auto mechanic shops currently in operation. This way, any on-the-job accident is their responsibility.
While many repairs your car needs are noticeable physically, there are many repairs that your vehicle needs that you may not notice unless you know what you are looking for. Therefore, learning to fix your own car will give you a much better understanding of it. You will have to learn how your vehicle functions, where the parts are located, and how they function properly. If you know how everything in your car is supposed to sound, look, and feel, then you will be able to immediately recognize when something is wrong. When you have a more intimate knowledge and understanding of your vehicle, you will begin to appreciate more.
While acquiring the knowledge necessary to fix your own car, you will also develop some important technical skills. Mechanically speaking, automobiles are rather complicated, which requires certain technical skills and knowledge to properly repair. By learning to repair your car, you will also be gaining detailed and specific knowledge and training in an important technical field.
Increasing the Longevity of Your Vehicle
One of the best benefits of learning to repair and maintain your own vehicle is that you will be increasing its lifespan. Maintaining your car is a lot easier than repairs, since regular maintenance usually involves auto glass repair and checking the tire pressure, fluid levels, brakes, lights, and the battery. If you routinely check these parts and maintain them properly, they will last longer, thus improving the overall lifespan of your vehicle. A properly maintained car will also have a higher resale value when it comes time to trade your vehicle in. A vehicle that is kept inside a garage will also help maintain it. For a garage door installation, contact a local company.
Increasing the Safety of Your Vehicle
Another benefit of learning to repair and maintain your own vehicle is increasing its overall safety. In many cases, the safety of a vehicle is determined by its condition. For instance, inflating your tires to the manufacturer’s recommendation will reduce the chances of a blowout or a flat tire. Make sure your tire tread is thick enough, your tires are inflated to the proper pressure, and your tires are rotated every other time you change the oil. If you learn how to recognize tire wear patterns, this will help to keep your tires from balding. As another example, if a hole has rusted through the floor of your car, replace it with affordable flooring. Just like you’d want to improve the flooring in your home, the flooring of your car is just as important.
If your vehicle and its parts are not in proper working condition, it will be a safety risk for not only you and your passengers, but for other drivers on the road. To further protect you and your passengers, contact an automotive insurance provider for a comprehensive insurance policy.
Learning Life Skills
Along with gaining specialized knowledge in a specific technical field, learning how to repair your own vehicle will also help you gain some valuable skills to help you succeed in life. Throughout the process of learning to fix your own vehicle, you will undoubtedly gain some confidence. This will help you in other aspects of life such as job interviewing and creating a resume. If anything goes wrong with your car, you will absolutely feel more equipped to handle it yourself.
Learning to repair your own car will also help you maintain a calmer state of mind. Many automobile owners are in a constant state of panic about their vehicles because they are completely unaware of their inner workings. Just because something is not functioning correctly in your car, it might not actually point to the root cause of the issue. For example, problems with the traction and handling may not immediately point to the tires and a problem with the radio may not necessarily point to the battery right away. If you go to a mechanic for these issues you may get stuck with a huge bill for what you thought was a minor problem. This can be incredibly frustrating, but if you know how to repair your own car, you will not have to deal with this aggravation. You and your vehicle will excel due to your newfound confidence.
Along with improving your confidence, fixing your own vehicle will promote an attitude of self-improvement. Learning how to repair your own car requires a commitment to learning a technical skill, which will expand your mind and improve your discipline.
Basic Car Repairs Anyone Can Do
Now that you know the benefits of learning to repair your own car, you may be wondering what repairs are more approachable and you should learn first and which ones are more advanced and require more specialized knowledge and training. A general rule of thumb is if the task requires only a few basic tools, you can probably do it at home. Therefore, leave the hail damage repair to the professionals. Here a few auto repairs and maintenance tasks that any novice can do at home:
Routinely checking and changing your vehicle’s oil will keep your engine running smoothly and increase your engine’s lifespan. Changing your vehicle’s oil is one of the most routine and simple car maintenance tasks you can easily do yourself. To begin, remove the oil drain plug to drain the oil. Next, unscrew the oil filter and drain that. Finally, return the drain plug and the oil filter back to their original positions and remove the oil filler hole cap, and pour in new oil. If your vehicle’s durian plug or oil filter is difficult to reach, there are plenty of tutorials online to help you.
Changing a Flat Tire
Since wheels are one of the most important parts of a car, knowing how to change a flat tire is one of the most important tasks to learn how to do. To start, simply loosen the lug nuts with a wrench and use a jack stand to lift up the vehicle. While it is off of the ground, remove the lug nuts and the tire as well. Put the spare tire on and fasten the lug nuts back into place. Finally, you can lower the vehicle back down and ensure the lug nuts are secure.
Changing Spark Plugs
Spark plugs are the small parts inside the cylinder that create sparks to ignite the gas, which in turn powers the engine. The spark plugs wear out after about ten thousand miles, so they have to be changed quite frequently. After you locate your spark plugs, remove the spark plug wire as well as the old spark plug. Put the new spark plug in its place and reattach the wire.
Removing Scratches from Paint
Getting scratches in the paint removed by a professional body shop can cost you thousands of dollars. Doing this simple task yourself will save you the money and the aggravation. Once you have determined the depth of the scratch, sand it lightly and clean the area. After that, apply a rubbing compound, polish the area, wash it, and wax it to seal. That is all it takes to save a ton of money.
Changing the Car Battery
When your car battery begins to show signs that it needs replacement, it is best to change your car battery at home and not while you are out and about. To begin replacing your car battery, remove the cover, and disconnect the negative cables. Move the clamp away from the positive cable clamp and the battery post. Finally, remove all the screws, install the new battery, and reconnect both cable clamps. Labeling the clamps before you remove them will help you put them back where they belong.
Replacing a Taillight or Headlight
Driving with a broken taillight or headlight is actually against the law, so it is recommended you replace them when they start to fade. Just remove the screws that attach the headlight frame to the bracket and disconnect the electrical component. Next, remove the old bulb and replace it with a new one. Finally, reattach the connector and the frame. In some cases, only your frame needs to be replaced, which can also be a safety hazard. Just replace it following the exact same steps.
Learning how to repair your own vehicle will save you money, boost your vehicle’s performance, give you an enhanced understanding of your car’s inner workings. It will also teach you an important technical skill, improve your confidence, increase safety, save money, and prepare you to fix problems with your automobile. While you’ll still have to bring your car to get inspected by a professional, the benefits are more than worth it for these minor repairs. After all, without the proper legal inspection, you might have to shell out for a bail bond agent for illegal driving.
Rely on these tips when you want to make the most of your car.