Driving can be an expensive activity. Every year, the average Aussie driver spends around AU$3800 just to keep their car going, a figure that doesn't include payments on the vehicle. Given those costs, it's not surprising that many people try to avoid spending money on servicing, cleaning and other car essentials if they can avoid it.
However, if you are one of those people who skimps on your vehicle, you might be storing up long-term costs. Here are some ways you could be short-changing yourself in the future by cutting your short-term motoring bill.
Using Cheap Regular Soap to Wash the Chassis
When you are down at the garage or the hardware store, it's tempting to choose the cheapest car washing fluids or to opt for a normal soap. After all, what harm can it really do? Normal soap will remove most of the dust that accumulates on your car's exterior, but it also tends to do a lot more than that. Using soap instead of specialist car washing products will gradually eat away both the wax layer that protects your car's body and the outer layer of paint. A much better option is to use a glaze gloss coat to add an extra layer, and to spend a little more on higher-quality cleaning products.
Failure to Use Stain Protection for the Interior
The state of the upholstery in your car's interior will have a major impact on its value when you come to sell, but many people choose not to apply stain protection products regularly. These products apply a polymer coating to the fibres of your seats, which makes them easier to clean and more resistant to damage by UV rays. Without them, the chances are that coffee and food stains will taint your seats and their colour will rapidly fade.
Not Feeding Your Car the Fluids it Needs
Cutting costs on cleaning is bad, but not providing essential fluids is even worse. You should always make sure engine oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid and coolants for your radiator are topped up. Don't keep telling yourself that it can wait another month. Make sure you have a stock of the fluids your car needs and pay attention to indicators on your dashboard. Maintaining fluid levels could help you avoid nasty breakdowns and mechanical failures further down the line.
Not Booking Regular Services
This is the major false economy for Aussie motorists. In a way, it overlays cleaning and fluid issues. If you book an annual service and ask mechanics to check all of your car's components, they will flag up any issues with fluids and (if you ask) bodywork and paint. But more importantly, they can tell whether or not components are wearing out and recommend replacements. Don't look at a car service as an additional cost. Look at it as a chance to make long-term savings. By taking action and avoiding engine failures in the future, you will end up saving money.
Try to look at your car as a long-term project. Even if it feels like you are saving money by using less engine oil, buying cheaper soap and failing to clean the interior properly, there will be a price to pay. It could be in the form of extra repairs or a lower resale value. Either way, booking a service and spending a little more on your car is a sound investment.Share
9 September 2016
Hey! My name is Damian and this blog contains some very important information about caring for and protecting your auto. I am not an automotive expert but I do have some experiences which have taught me some important lessons. When I bought a new car a couple of years ago, I was so happy. However, that happiness turned to anger when someone broke into my car. They didn't manage to drive it away but I was super mad. My friend who works in an auto shop recommended that I buy some accessories to improve the security of my car. He also gave me some great tips on how I could keep my car secure.