Are you skimping on your Toyota auto repair to save some money this 2018?
Car maintenance is a necessary part of any vehicle ownership. It’s important to invest in regular and high-quality maintenance in order to extend the lifespan of your car and stay safe.
Sometimes, however, both preventative and required maintenance costs can add up. This is especially the case if you get in an accident and have to repair your vehicle immediately.
Luckily, there are ways that you can budget for car maintenance so nothing catches you by surprise.
Read on for more insight!
1. Break It Down
The first thing to do when budgeting for Toyota auto repair is to understand what costs you’re going to encounter. Repair costs include the expenses of regular maintenance on top of car payments, insurance premiums, and fuel.
For more information about maintenance specific to your Toyota, check out your service repair manual.
Your Toyota requires a lot of general maintenance to run smoothly. Some maintenance simply involves routine inspections with minimal cost. Other maintenance and minor repairs may cost more.
Toyotas require regular oil changes. Depending on whether or not you change your own oil, you could spend $20 – $100 per oil change. You can expect to change your oil every 4,000+ miles; most vehicle owners will change their oil at least twice a year.
In addition to oil changes, Toyota owners will need to regularly rotate tires and align their wheels. They may need to replace a windshield wiper, brake light, or supply of coolant.
If you live in a weatherized area, you may have to purchase snow tires and pay for their install and removal.
These other maintenance costs can add a few hundred dollars to your annual car expenses. According to AAA, you can expect to pay 4 to 5 cents in maintenance costs per mile driven in your vehicle.
In general, you’ll want to budget at least $50 a month for general maintenance costs.
Insurance Premiums & Deductibles
Vehicle owners in the U.S.A. are required to carry auto insurance. Depending on your vehicle make and model, as well as your auto insurance company, you will have to pay an insurance premium every month or once a year.
Premiums vary widely. In general, most start out at $80 a month and go up from there.
If you get in an accident, you may have to pay a deductible before Toyota auto repair can happen. Most deductibles start at $500.
Don’t forget about gas expenses. You may drive a fuel-efficient vehicle. You may also not drive your car as much.
Regardless, note the price of gas per gallon and how often you fill up. Most vehicle owners spend at least $100 a month on fuel.
Taxes and Fees
States require that vehicle owners register their vehicles every year. Some will also require you to pay taxes on your vehicle because it counts as property.
Research how much your state charges for taxes and registration fees per year, so that you know what to expect to pay annually.
2. Always Set Aside More Than You Need
Now that you’ve broken down the general expenses for car ownership, you can start budgeting out how much you need for Toyota auto repair on a monthly basis.
A good principle to follow is always setting aside more money than you actually need. This will ensure that you never fall short of what’s due.
Roundup on cost estimates. If some costs can be paid once a year, start saving a little bit per month so that you can pay that annual cost comfortably when the bill comes.
You may even want to consider creating a separate savings or checking account that is solely for car expenses. This will also ensure you have records of everything.
Keep all receipts of any Toyota auto repair expenses so that you can always stay on top of your cost estimates.
3. Have An Emergency Fund
Accidents do happen, and it’s important to be prepared financially. Set aside a little bit each month for your emergency fund.
This may mean putting $25 into a savings account every month so that you have resources for a deductible or other repair not covered by your insurance. Even a small amount can help when the unexpected happens.
4. Practice Fuel Economy
If you’re struggling to stay on top of car expenses, there are ways to cut down. Practice fuel economy to save on fuel costs.
This may mean carpooling with friends or taking only one trip into town each day. Ride your bike or walk if you can. If you have yet to purchase a vehicle, consider buying one that gets high fuel economy.
5. Don’t Put Things Off
If you do have a maintenance issue, don’t put it off. Even a minor repair issue can lead to worse damage down the road.
You may be worried about paying for repairs. Still, it’s worth it to take in your vehicle to a provider now so that you don’t incur more expenses later.
Some providers may offer payment plans or reduced rates. It’s always important to ask.
6. Wait to Purchase
If you are unsure about how to budget effectively for your Toyota auto repair and have yet to buy a vehicle, take your time making your purchase. It’s always good to have a clear idea of what expenses you’ll be covering before you make a big purchase decision.
Make sure you have the resources available to cover general maintenance costs, insurance premiums, and more. You can also consult your Toyota dealer for advice on budgeting and payment plans.
Budgeting for Your Toyota Auto Repair
It is definitely possible to afford Toyota auto repair, no matter how severe the repair needs are. Begin by understanding what expenses you’re working with so that you can set aside the right amount each month.
Always establish an emergency fund to cover deductibles if the need arises, and don’t put off key repair issues if possible. You can also practice fuel economy in order to save money on car expenses each month.
At MoterEra, we’re your car repair central. Check out our extensive list of car service repair manuals so that you always know what to expect!