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While we don’t have a car loan, keeping our cars on the road takes a little bit of money. Our goal is to keep our cars for years to come, so staying on top of car care is important to us.
When the cars break down, it can easily either be a minor hiccup in the budget or a major chunk of money that can derail your finances.
If you can stay on top of your car, you can use your money for other goals.
Driving a Car for a Million Miles
It may seem ridiculous that doing the routine maintenance can save you a ton of money. After all, cars just break down after a few years, right?
Not necessarily so. Joe LoCicero had driven his 1990 Honda Accord (True Blue) for a million miles.
What’s his secret to keeping True Blue running? Joe credits being disciplined about following Honda’s maintenance schedule:
… he’s read and followed his owner’s manual and maintenance schedule to the letter. He’s also a stickler for fluids, he checked them weekly, switching them seasonally (10W-30 in summer and 5W-30 in winter), and changed them every 5,000 miles. He’s been loyal to the same brand of oil and never let it go below a quart low.
I know that Joe's story is not ordinary, but his dedication to taking car of his car shows that you can extend your vehicle's life if you follow a regular maintenance schedule.
DIY Car Maintenance?
What if you are limited on your budget or you have some spare time, could you do some of the car care yourself?
Even if you're not mechanically inclined, there are a few car check-ups you can do on your own to keep your car in good shape for many years.
Another thing you can do that can help you with car expenses is making sure your tires are properly inflated.
Besides keeping yourself from replacing your tires prematurely, you can also shave some dollars from your gas expenses. It's a win-win and it doesn't take much time to keep your tires in good shape.
Thoughts on Car Care
I'd like to hear how you guys are doing with the cars this year so far? How do you budget car care in your family?How much has your car cost you each year?