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How to save money on car servicing and still have a reliable car

Many people think they're being smart by not having their car serviced as regularly as they're told they should do. However, it has to be said that these people usually come to regret their decision to avoid a regular check-up and it's usually when they're at the side of the road with the bonnet up and looking pretty helpless.

As with other expenses, we could all probably work a little bit harder to save money when it comes to repairing our vehicles. But how? Recent research from What Car magazine revealed some startling statistics: UK motorists could save £126 each per year in garage fees and collectively we're paying £285 million too much on servicing. Quite astonishing really.
 
Below are three tips to get you thinking about how you can save money, have a reliable car and maybe even make a new friend. If you've got any other tips of your own for keeping your car running smoothly without damaging your wallet, please let us know!

DIY

No, we're not suggesting you suddenly declare yourself a qualified mechanic and decide to try and repair everything yourself. But keep an eye on things such as oil levels and windscreen wiper fluid and you'll go some way to ensure you don't get caught out. These are all easy to top up yourself and you shouldn't be paying to do it. In addition, keep your tyres topped up. Flat tyres lead to breakdowns and punctures, period. Pumped up tyres not only are safer, but they will save you money on fuel, too.

Network

If you've lived in one area for a few years then the chances are you'll take your car to the same garage every time it needs a service. However, have you ever taken the effort to get to know the man (or woman) behind the overalls? Get to know them, become friendly with them and they'll be much more likely to do you a favour and to give you a good deal. The chances are that, unless you're a car fanatic, you'll have taken your car in when in reality you could have tweaked something minor yourself (such as oil levels, as mentioned above). If this happens, and you're on good terms with the mechanic, he or she is a lot less likely to take you for a ride financially.

Shop around

The internet is your friend. As with other shopping trips, in this day and age only fools go to the first person they come across when it comes to an expensive purchase (which unfortunately car servicing often is). Do your research online and you will be able to find the best deal, financially, as well as read reviews from other drivers. Use this to your benefit, too – if one garage is a lot more convenient to go to, but it isn't the cheapest, give them a call and tell them. The chances are they will lower your prices, because they want your business.

These tips are largely common sense, but they will save you cash and keep your car running well, and that's what matters. Let us know what your best tip is.


published: 05/08/2014 09:24:28

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