This is a collaborative post
Saving money has become more of a concern for all of us than ever before, and our motoring habits need careful consideration after the developments of the past few years. Driving and maintaining your car will be one of the largest expenses of your adult life. Cars are known to be an asset, but keep in mind that they are a quickly depreciating asset, so being clever with your maintenance and trade-ins is crucial for getting the most out of your large and expensive vehicle.
Consider Trading In For Efficiency
Your old, or possibly even relatively new, vehicle may have been fun for a while when you bought it, but now the cost of maintaining it may have skyrocketed, or the novelty and shine may have worn off, and now you realise you may have been better off with something a bit better for the environment. You may be tired of hearing your wallet cry every time you pull up to a fuel station. There are many reasons for making the move to a hybrid, or full electric vehicle. Whatever yours are, you can be sure you’ll be saving a small fortune in petrol, and Mother Nature will send her thanks.
If the flashier vehicle out there is what does it for you, or if you are tired of inheriting a past owner’s expensive car issues, then perhaps leasing is the option for you. While you may not end up owning the car at the end of the day, if you are constantly trading up your cars for newer, shinier models then leasing would be the perfect fit. If you wish to test out a new electric vehicle, then leasing an electric car would let you try out the newer technology without the long-term commitment. Be sure to do your homework first by visiting a trusted site like Electrix for the facts. It has a quiz to help you decide whether to go electric. The monthly payments on a leased vehicle are often lower than a car loan payment as there is no interest, which means you could lease a more valuable vehicle than the cheaper model you could comparably pay off. There is no deposit to consider, another great advantage for your wallet.
Skip The Unnecessary Extras
Being presented with an add-on guarantee that your car will be covered in the event of an ant rebellion may be tempting, but don’t let the wool be pulled over your eyes and buckle to scare tactics. Opt for the insurance you need for the driving you do. Cover yourself for any events that you are concerned about and stay away from extra insurances and policies that salesmen may try to upsell you. Don’t hesitate to contact your insurance company should you want anything added or removed from your coverage.
Set Out That Budget
Give yourself a monthly budget for fuel, maintenance, and emergency savings, and stick to it. It’s a simple process to calculate how much money you spend on fuel every week to get to and from work and to do any shopping along the way. You may want to give yourself enough room in your fuel budget to get away for a few weekends a month, or maybe go on a weekly drive up to family or friends. This can all be accounted for and budgeted so you avoid any money or fuel shortages towards the end of the month. Maintenance is regular enough that setting aside some money to keep up with it is almost a necessity these days. As vehicles get older, their problems get larger, louder, and more expensive. It’s a great idea to have a sum of money tucked away for when that annoying knock becomes a loud bang.
Stay Up With Maintenance
Frequent oil changes are the largest factor when extending your engine life, and carrying them out will more than make up for their hassle and expense when you consider the cost of repairing or replacing an engine. Not to mention the nightmare it is to source a good, reliable replacement engine. Check on your air filter at least once a month as a clogged filter also reduces your engine’s life and increases your fuel consumption. Take your vehicle to a trusted friend or repairman once a month if you are not up to the maintenance yourself. Your car and wallet will thank you.
Carpool To Work And Shopping
If you are travelling to similar destinations as other people around you, consider initiating a carpool. By driving your car less frequently you can save on brakes, tires, oil, and especially fuel. Find out who else in your area is going to the same destination as you by advertising on neighbourhood notice boards or even the neighbourhood chat group on your favourite chat app. You can split the cost of fuel for the journey and also rotate vehicles amongst those in the group to save on maintenance for everyone all around. Make similar arrangements for a weekly outing to a nice shopping complex or village, especially if it is a longer journey than normal. If you do plan to do any carpooling with your vehicle, be sure to let your insurer know in case there are any problems or anything to be changed in your insurance contract.
Driving habits are often overlooked, but you can cut your monthly fuel usage almost in half by paying attention to what you are doing and how you are doing it. Accelerate gently, never quickly pressing down on the pedal. Pay attention to the cars in front of you so you may anticipate slow-downs and take your foot off the gas, this way you coast to a stop with little use of your breaks and minimal fuel wasted. This is an invaluable habit to learn for those who do a lot of city driving. Keep your speed constant and under the limit. You use 20% to 30% more fuel to drive a distance at 120km/h than you do while driving the same distance at 80km/h.
Remove Unnecessary Weight
With your average vehicle, every additional 50kg your vehicle carries will increase its fuel consumption by as much as 2%. While we are not asking you to strip out your spare tyre and passenger seats, you would be surprised how much the trash junk you may have accumulated actually weighs. Other weight-reducing tips include removing roof racks, tow bars, aftermarket lighting, and towing gear when not in use. Removing any external features could also decrease the amount of drag you subject your car to, leading to further fuel savings.
With life becoming increasingly expensive, it makes sense for us to look for every route that we can to make our pounds stretch farther. When it comes to your vehicle, the same logic applies, but never let it come at the expense of your passengers and your own safety. Using these tips should assist you in saving a small fortune in the long run. Make sure to carefully consider and weigh your options before making expensive decisions. Stick to your budget. Keep your car happy and healthy by keeping on top of regular and reasonable maintenance. Lastly, set aside an emergency fund for your car and yourself. You never know when you may need funds to cover something unexpected.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post