For some drivers, their cars have become money pits. Higher fuel prices have been the monkey wrench that has spoiled many a motorists driving experience. No longer can any of us count on cheap fuel, high gasoline prices are here to stay. However, you can save money on your overall car expenses and restore your driving pleasure quickly. Here are some tips to guide you along the way:
Regular Gas v. Premium Gas — Very few vehicles built today require premium gasoline. Thanks to knock sensors, which adjust the mixture of air and fuel to your engine, many cars can run on “87” octane fuel v. “91” octane fuel. By selecting the cheaper priced grade of fuel, you can save a nice amount of money over one year’s time.
Wash it Yourself. No one does a better job of washing and waxing your car then you do. Avoid those all too frequent trips to the car wash and save some money today. Of course, if you live in a more northerly climate where snow and road salt usage is pervasive, going to a car wash is a must in order to protect your vehicle’s body. Buy a coupon book to save on multiple washes.
What’s in Your Wallet? If you aren’t already using a rewards credit card for your gasoline purchases, you should be. Some cards are designed to give you an instant price reduction at the pump. Shop around for the card that is right for you.
Check Your Tires. Under inflated tires can reduce gasoline mileage by as much as 10%. In addition, under inflated tires will wear out faster too.
Review Your Insurance Policy. You may be paying for too much insurance on your car especially if it is worth less than $3000 and you still have collision coverage. Drop the collision coverage and bank the savings toward a down payment on your next car. Make certain that all of your other personal information is accurate too as an incorrectly listed zip code can impact your rates.
Change Your Oil. Granted, not too many people change their car’s oil anymore. With ten minute oil change shops so widespread, the convenience factor is a big consideration. Still, if you have someone else changing your oil, you do not need to change it every 3000 miles unless you subject your car to severe driving. Check your manufacturer’s recommendations and change it according to their specifications, not Jiffy Lube’s.
Do the Work Yourself. Some maintenance you can do yourself thereby avoiding having to pay high labor charges and too much for your parts. Air filters, oil filters, belts, batteries, and many other smaller parts can be changed by most motorists. Shop online through a discount wholesaler and you can save even more money on premium automotive parts.
Gas prices are likely to remain high, so saving money elsewhere becomes even more important. A wise consumer shops around for the best deals and there are plenty of them out there. In the face of a fuel crisis, you may have to curtail some of your driving or at least change your driving habits, however the “Great American Past Time” is alive and well and cruising down a freeway near you. Safe driving!