Budget for Car Maintenance with These Tips!
Now that you are a car owner, you may think that your whole job is to pay for your car, and put gas in it. However, to keep your car up and running, you’ll need to do maintenance on your car. Routine maintenance may seem like an unnecessary expense, but it will save you money in the long run. How do you budget for routine maintenance? We can help with these handy tips.
How to Start Budgeting for Maintenance
If you have had your car for a while, you can figure out how much to save for maintenance. Take a look at your bank statements or receipts for the last year that concern your car. Add that total up, and divide the number by 12 to get an idea of how much money you need to save each month.
Although the method described above is a great way to start, it doesn’t cover emergencies. As a car owner, there will always be an emergency that pops up when you least expect it. If you aren’t prepared for it, this emergency can create a giant hole in your budget. You need to save some additional money in your budget each month for the unexpected. Some of the unexpected maintenance needs would include a flat tire or a dead battery. Figure out how much money you can put back each month for the unexpected maintenance repairs.
You need to consider several other “routine” maintenance issues that don’t crop up as often, but depending on how much you drive, you may need to have done. Usually, your oil needs to be changed between 5000 and 7500 miles routinely. If you only drive a few miles each day, it may be a year before you need your oil changed. If you drive a lot, you may be getting your oil changed a couple of times yearly. Air filters also need to be changed, usually once every other year, but if you drive a lot, it could be sooner. You’ll need to budget for tire rotations a couple of times a year, and new tires. You need to get new tires when the tread depth gets low, or every 60,000 miles. Your brakes will need to be checked and serviced as well because brake pads have to be replaced as they wear down.