7 Ways to Save Money on Car Repairs and Maintenance

The first time the check engine light came on my dashboard, I had no idea of what to do! This was my first solo trip to the mechanic after my divorce and I felt way over my head.  My ex-husband was in charge of car repairs and maintenance, and it was never something I put much interest in. At least not until that day. Does anyone have any ways they save money on car repairs?

The mechanic presented me with a hefty repair bill, which I paid because I did not know better.  Because of that experience when faced with a high car repair bill, I always get a second opinion. Make sure you understand every line item of the work that is being proposed, and if you don’t, ask questions!

Keeping up with car maintenance and repairs can be pretty expensive, but being be more proactive can save you a ton of money and keep your car running smoothly.

Here are seven tips to make sure you aren’t wasting money on your car.

Get Regular Maintenance Done 

There are several advantages of getting regular car maintenance. Firstly, you may preserve the life of a car, which may also save you thousands of dollars on car repairs in the long run.  This maintenance includes; oil changes, and fluid level checks. Secondly, regular maintenance prevents wear and tear on your suspension and tires. Have the tires rotated and aligned, replace filters, get recommended or needed tune-ups.

Shop Repairs

Another way you can save money on car repairs and maintenance is by selecting the right place to get the job done.  Call around a few places to do price comparisons.  Similarly, check for deals on both auto parts stores, and auto mechanics.

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Find a Reliable Mechanic

Ask your friends and family to recommend a good mechanic rather than just picking the auto repair shop or dealership closest to home, so you are not blindsided by one who does not have your interest at heart. If you’re on a neighborhood Facebook group or online forum, ask there, too.Find a good one, then establishing a genuine and long-term relationship.

RELATED: Buying a New Car? 5 Areas Your Mechanic Should Check Beforehand

Never Ignore the Check Engine Light

If the check engine light comes on, get an onboard diagnostic (OBD) scan immediately. Waiting will only make the problem worse and more expensive. I recommend the same for other maintenance. If something doesn’t sound right, or the car is driving weird, take it in to a mechanic as quickly as possible.

Read Your Vehicle Owner’s Manual

The maker of your car has provided an entire book of helpful hints to keep your car running well and your maintenance costs down. The manual will also tell you what to expect as your vehicle reaches certain mileage points. Neglecting to follow your manual recommendations could present safety issues and reduce your car’s longevity.

Learn How to Do Simple Repairs

If you have a garage or other space where work can be performed at home. You can save money on car repairs by learning to do simple things like oil and filter changes, and changing wiper blades by yourself. Recruit your friends and kids to help you. you can learn basic repairs by watching self-service car repairs videos, even tutorials. Make sure to do what you safely can and save where you can.

Take Advantage of Warranties

Many car parts have lifetime or limited lifetime warranties. Make sure to check with the salesperson at the time of purchase or on your receipt. It is also recorded in the system at the store.  Where there is an option to purchase a lifetime or one-time purchase offer, spend the extra cash on the warranty. Keep all of your warranties and receipts somewhere safe; you’ll need them for as long as you keep your car.


These tips for how to save money on a car repair will put your vehicle in a good place to drive well for many years. By staying on top of routine care and not waiting until the car breaks down to make fixes, you will save a lot of money and increase the lifespan of your vehicle.

Your car can be one of the biggest hits on your monthly budget, but the right strategies can help you put a few dollars back in your wallet when repair needs arise.

Another useful strategy is to add a line item to your monthly budget for car repairs and maintenance. Even if you maintain your car perfectly, there’s always the chance that your car will require costly repairs every now and again. If this is the case, by budgeting for the unexpected will help a great deal,

If you have other tips on how people can save money on car repairs, share them with us below. We would love to hear how creative you get when trying to save money on car repairs and maintenance!