Vehicle maintenance rates can vary widely depending on what you need to get done. If we’re just talking standard, bare-bones tasks, you might be on the line for $100.00 per year in maintenance fees. If your car requires less than routine maintenance, you could be looking at around $1000.00.
Here’s the thing though… The vast majority of car owners can save their maintenance expenditures by handling tasks on their own. And with the advent of YouTube, DIY auto fixes have never been easier.
Below, we touch on 8 jobs that we think you can spearhead without the help of a professional which will ultimately save you big money.
1. Wiper Swap
Your windshield wipers are one of the most integral safety components on your vehicle.
People tend to forget about them and don’t give them the credit that they deserve but when it’s pouring rain and you’re having trouble seeing while flying down the freeway, you’ll be glad that they’re there.
If you’re finding that your wipers are more smearing water around your windshield than they are removing water from it, it’s time for a swap. All you have to do to achieve that is pick up some quality wipers from a big box store and follow the directions on the package.
Replacing wipers takes about 5 minutes.
2. Spark Plugs
You won’t need to replace your spark plugs often. In most cases, they’ll last up to 100,000 miles.
Still though, checking on your spark plug’s condition every 30,000 miles or so is always a good idea.
If you are finding that your plugs need changing, doing so is simple. There are a number of changing guides online, new plugs cost around $30.00 and given that most mechanics will charge around $300.00 to do the work for you, DIY is a great option here.
3. Oil Change
For $20.00 and about 45 minutes of your time, you can completely change your car’s oil. Don’t tell your local mechanic that as they’d like you to believe that their $70+ oil changes are a great value… Not so much.
Every 5000 miles or so, you should give your engine an oil change. When you do this, ensure that your car’s engine is 100% cool. If it’s not, you risk being severely burned.
Also, being comfortable with a car jack is a must here.
Oil change guides are a dime a dozen online so you should have no trouble digging one up.
4. Tire Changes
Blow a tire? Concerned about your non-blown tire’s tread?
In both cases, a tire swap is going to be what you’ll want to do.
Changing a tire is one of the most rudimentary DIY auto fixes that you can carry out and your car probably comes with everything you need for the job.
Jack up your car, remove your tire’s bolts, pop on the new tire and work backward from there.
5. Gas Swap
Have you ever put diesel gas in a standard car engine or visa-versa? We get that after you see options on diesel generators today and how cheap they make powering your household appliances, it can be tempting to just start using diesel for everything.
Too bad that standard gas cars won’t get far on diesel fuel.
If you ever put the wrong kind of gas in your car, you may be able to siphon it out of your tank with a hose or drain your car’s gas tank via a release valve on the bottom of your car.
6. Battery Change
Dead batteries happen from time to time. Especially when you leave your car’s headlights on while watching a long movie or enjoying a fun evening at a restaurant.
In the case of your headlights draining your car’s battery, giving your vehicle a jump is usually your best bet. If your car’s battery is straight-up dead though, picking up a new battery and swapping out your existing one is as easy as pie.
Just turn off your car, unbolt your existing battery and put the new one in.
Make sure you have the positive and negative cables in the right place and never touch your battery’s conductive ends directly.
7. Chipped Windshield
A micro-crack in your windshield can turn into a macro one in a hurry. Avoid that happening to you by investing in a windshield fix-it kit.
These kits cost about $20.00 online and disperse a gel over your windshield’s crack which solidifies it and keeps it from growing.
Many windshield repair companies charge hundreds to perform this service which just about anybody can do on their own.
8. Brake Replacement
Getting your break pads taken out every 25,000 miles or so is important to ensure that your car is always safe to drive. Unfortunately though, brake replacements are among the most expensive and common car repairs that you’ll run into.
While getting your breaks fixed is definitely on the hard end of DIY auto fixes, with the right tutorial, you can get it done.
If at any point you feel like you’re not sure about how to proceed with your brake swap, call in a pro. You don’t want to gamble with your break safety.
Wrapping Up DIY Auto Repair/Maintenance That You Can Handle
DIY auto repair is intimidating to some. A number of the tasks that mechanics routinely charge hundreds for though can be tackled by just about any average Jane/Joe that’s willing to watch some online tutorials and budget out some time.
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