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7 Car Repairs Worth Every Penny
Does your car need repair? Dreading the costs that are involved? Unfortunately, owning a car can be quite expensive, especially when it requires a lot of attention when it comes to continual repairs. These days, going to the garage to get your vehicle repaired can get into the thousands of dollars. This is because the price of everything is going up each year.
Sometimes, with large repair bills, you may wonder to yourself, “Are all the repairs really necessary? From the annual oil change to the tire realignment, do they really need doing as much as the mechanic says they do”? If you've been wondering this, you're not alone.
In truth, there are some things that can go longer if needed before being repaired, but how do you know which ones are worth the price you pay for them? The following is a simple guide to the seven car repairs which are worth every penny, and the ones that you should really repair as soon as they become an issue.
Car Repairs That Are Worth Every Cent Spent
Faulty Windshield Wipers
Throughout your vehicle's life, you will find your windscreen wipers will deteriorate and degrade overtime. This is due to the constant exposure to changing weather conditions. From blistering heat to the freezing snow of winter, it's no wonder they eventually lose their integrity. The trick to knowing when to change your windscreen wipers is when they don't clear the windscreen properly during rain.
Depending on the manufacturer, typically your windscreen wipers will cost you between $20 to $40. Although you may feel it's an unimportant repair, in reality it is more important than you think. If you're unable to clean your windshield correctly during changes in the weather, your risk of having an accident increases up to 70%. It's not uncommon to hear about someone who has been hit by a vehicle because the driver couldn't see out of the windscreen properly. Remember, to drive safely, you must be able to see clearly at all times.
A cracked windshield may not feel important to replace straight away. You may think to yourself the rest of the windscreen is still fine to see out of. The problem with a cracked windscreen isn't all about being able to see clearly. The main problem with a cracked windscreen is that it is more prone to shattering during an accident. The main reason why many people don't replace their faulty windshield is because of the price.
A car windscreen can cost you hundreds of dollars, depending on the model and brand of the car. Many people opt for cheaper and low priced versions; however, if the windshield isn't installed correctly, it has the possibility of blowing out during an accident or when the airbags are deployed. When replacing a faulty or cracked windshield, remember to take it to a professional garage that has experience in this sort of repair. This ensures it is fastened tightly to the vehicle, and it won't blow out or crack easily during an accident.
Tire Pressure and Uneven Tread
Getting the tire pressure of your vehicle checked and repaired is well worth the money. The problems associated with uneven tire pressure is that the tread on the tires takes more force during the drive. This can increase the risk of blowouts occurring with your tires. Another common problem for car tires is when the tread starts to become uneven over a period of time. This is generally a sign that your car needs a wheel alignment. The garage should check everything associated with this area, including the steering, suspension components, and the wheel bearings. If left untreated, your vehicle will begin to run rockier than normal or pull to the sides. This can cause unsafe conditions for you, your passengers, and others on the road.
Tire pressure checks can be done by you or your mechanic and are easily fixed at a cost-effective price. The mechanic will make sure the tires are properly inflated to the right levels to help maximize driving efficiency. Many people, however, try to avoid wheel alignments as long as possible, because they don't have the money for an expensive bill. In reality, however, wheel alignments aren't as expensive as you may think. The make, model, and brand of the car, along with how bad the wheel misalignment is will dictate the price. For a better idea on the price, it's best to contact your garage for a rough quote.
Oil Isn't the Only Fluid in Your Car
For a vehicle to run successfully, it's important to check your oil, water, and other vehicle fluids regularly. These additional fluids include engine coolant, power steering, transmission engine fluid, and brake fluid. Low water and oil levels can mean costly repairs if left untreated. The problem with letting your oil levels run low is it will cause your motor to cease up. This results in a costly motor replacement, which could cost you between $3,000 to $10,000, depending on the brand and manufacturer. As for water with insufficient levels, it can cause your car to over-heat.This can place major strain on many important components underneath the hood. Always check to make sure your vehicle has plenty of water and oil at all times
Other fluids should also be checked regularly to ensure everything is running efficiently. An increase in repairs and costs can cause havoc when you don't regularly check or keep your vehicle's maintenance up to date. For experienced vehicle fanatics, changing all these fluids can be an easy task. However, making a mistake in which fluid goes where it shouldn't could cause you to spend between $800-$2000 or more to get the mistake repaired. If you're unsure, always book your vehicle in for a maintenance check with your garage. This car maintenance is well worth every penny.
Flashing Check-Engine Light
In all vehicles there should be a check engine light. This light is designed to flash when a major problem is occurring with the engine. When it flashes, you will see a bright yellow, amber, or orange light that will continue to flash. When it does, it usually indicates there is a very serious problem occurring.
One problem that could occur in a situation such as this includes a misfire, which will quickly overheat the catalytic converter. The catalytic converter is an emissions control device. If something like this occurs, it can cost you between $500 to $1500 or more to correct, depending on the brand of car you own. A problem such as this can also cause increased risk of the vehicle catching on fire. It's important to remember that when you see the check engine light flash, pull over and turn it off instantly to minimize damage.
Call your local mechanic or a tow truck to help take the vehicle to the garage. Although this may be expensive to fix, it's well worth it. If your vehicle catches on fire, you will spend more on replacing the whole vehicle.
The oxygen sensor in a vehicle is generally mounted within the manifold of the exhaust to help monitor the amount of unburned oxygen that is left in the exhaust as it leaves the engine. A faulty oxygen sensor can cause problems with the check engine light to flash. This is because a faulty sensor can cause your vehicle's engine to use more fuel, which can cause a problem with a 40 percent reduction in fuel economy. It's important to have this fixed, as you will otherwise burn through excessive fuel. You could check it yourself, if you know where to look, to see whether there are any loose wires which have been accidently disconnected. If there aren't, then it could mean that your oxygen sensor could be burnt out or broken, which means you will need to see a professional mechanic. Spending the little amount on fixing the oxygen sensor will save you hundreds of dollar overall in extra fuel you will have to buy.
Changing the Timing Belt at 100,000 Miles
Timing belts in a vehicle are used to help regulate the engine valves' opening and closing mechanisms. Throughout its driving years, these timing belts can become worn and start to deteriorate. This wear and tear on the timing belts means that they need to be replaced as soon as possible. If left unrepaired, the timing belts will break during a drive. When this occurs, your vehicle will instantly stop, and it will become inoperable. It may also cause damage to the engine, which will result in very costly repairs, right into the thousands of dollars. Vehicles which consist of non-interference engines may survive when a timing belt breaks, but it's not worth the risk. Most manufacturers estimate a timing belt to last over 100,000 miles; however, it is recommended that the timing belt be changed when you have reached 100,000 miles on the dial, even if it stills looks okay.
Finding the Right Mechanic for Your Car Service
Finding the right mechanic to service your car can be easier than you think. You may have heard the stories of people getting bad service, or they feel they are spending more than needed on their service. The truth is,different mechanics will charge different prices and do their servicing differently from each other. When looking for a reliable, affordable, and good mechanic, all you have to do is:
- Ask to see their certificates in professional mechanic and car repair. Their certificates should be registered with the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence, depending on where you live. In order to receive this certification, all trained mechanics will have gone through vigorous skills and knowledge testing, while also having at least two years of experience.
- Ask whether the mechanic has worked on your brand of car before, if you own a more expensive model. There are some mechanics who may not be familiar with high-end brands of cars. If you own a high-end car, it's may be best to take it to an official mechanic hired by the car's manufacturer.
- Check the company's reputation to see whether they have had any bad reviews. You can do this online or ask those around you if they've heard anything bad. Comparing reviews and other mechanics is a great way of finding one whose reputation is exceptional.
- Look for a mechanic who is willing to show you the problem if you ask about it. It's a good idea to see where the problem lies and what to look out for in the future. This extra knowledge will help you understand your car better and will help you see any potential problems in the future.
- Go with your gut when searching for a good mechanic. If something doesn't feel right, then it probably isn't. Always use your intuition as a guide. It hasn't failed you before, has it?
- Take your car to different mechanics to gauge what they have to offer. If you only need small repairs done on your vehicle, why not take it to a few different mechanics as problems arise? In a short amount of time, you will know the ones that are expensive and which ones are worth the money.
Car Repair Tips for Beginner
For a new owner of a car, there are a few things you can do to help maintain the car at home to reduce overall costs. These include:
- Keep the car clean and tidy to reduce build-up of dirt, dust, and mud. A constant build-up of moisture can cause rust to accumulate in an area. Regularly cleaning your car can help to manage longer term problems.
- Check the fuel type before filling up. It's not uncommon for people to accidently fill the car with diesel instead of gasoline. Always check the gas pump before you fill up.
- Constantly keep a check on all inner dials and lights while driving, to make sure every thing is working as it should. Any slight changes should be monitored. If they start to get worse, take your car in for service.
Going to the garage can be an expensive task. In the U.S. alone over 40 percent of people tend to put off important and vital auto repairs to try to avoid the costs involved with their vehicle maintenance. Astoundingly, others put off their maintenance due to being embarrassed by the state of their car when they arrive at the mechanics. Studies have shown that, on average, 21 percent of those aged between 18–24 years old admitted they don't fix their vehicle in a timely fashion, compared to the 14 percent of drivers who were over the age of 45.
As you can see, although some of these repairs may be costly, they are worth every penny you spend before a major problem occurs. Not only will you keep your car running smoothly, but you will also help to save yourself thousands of dollars each year. Remember, you need your vehicle in proper running order to make sure it is safe for you and other drivers on the road. Have you booked your car for service maintenance yet?