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6 Tips to Save Money on Vehicle Maintenance

It can be expensive to maintain a vehicle. There are oil changes, gas, new tires, scheduled maintenance, brake pads, as well as the occasional check engine light, which you need to deal with from time to time. You’ll be spending too much money if you run to an expensive mechanic or the dealership for each task. However, if you ignore the maintenance of your vehicle, you are asking for trouble.

Vehicle maintenance doesn’t need to be expensive. When done responsibly, you will save money on ongoing care and maintenance for your vehicle. You will save on efficiency, labor, parts and more by being intelligent regarding your vehicle maintenance.

To ensure your car is running smoothly and to avoid an accident where your car gets totaled, it’s important to prioritize vehicle maintenance. Ways to save money on maintaining your vehicle include:

1. Do Preventative Maintenance

Preventative vehicle maintenance will help to prevent wear and tear from accumulating on your vehicle.

Preventative maintenance involves tasks such as:

  • Changing your oil regularly
  • Rotating your tires regularly
  • Refilling your battery electrolyte if your battery is a flooded lead acid battery
  • Replacing windshield wipers around once every six months
  • Testing your battery
  • Replacing spark plugs around once every 30,000 miles
  • Changing fuel, air and cabin air filters regularly

Servicing your vehicle regularly will save you from headaches in the long-run.

2. Change Light Bulbs Yourself

For most of your vehicle’s light bulbs, it’s not difficult to change them. They usually either:

  • Utilize a twist-and-pull bayonet base
  • Pull out/push in

Replacement bulbs can typically be found in any auto parts stores, and can even sometimes be found in hardware stores. Sometimes, it can be tricky to access bulbs, so you might wish to check your manual or search online if it’s not obvious how to replace the bulb.

It’s smart to regularly check on the bulbs in your car to ensure you can drive safely with high beams or low beams when necessary.

3. Don’t Ignore Warning Signs

When a check engine light shows up, your engine sputters upon you turning the key, or your vehicle begins to make rattling noises, don’t ignore these warning signs. For many problems with vehicles, they get worse as you ignore them over time.

For example, rattling can mean a lot of things, such as failing catalytic converters. This could create issues regarding powering up your vehicle, and could even lead to engine damage. In that case, you’d be stuck paying for multiple issues to be fixed.

Quickly check if something feels, sounds or looks off. If you can’t identify the issue, it’s time for you to start obtaining service quotes. You’ll save money long-term by quickly taking care of the issue.

4. Carry an Air Pressure Gauge

Not only can you enhance the self-confidence you have via DIY moves, but DIY moves can also improve your financial mindset and save money.

An example: you can extend your tires’ lifespan and improve your gas mileage by maintaining the optimum tire air pressure. This also makes sure your vehicle can be safely driven. Tire gauges are usually less than $10 and keeping one in your glovebox is a smart idea.

5. Read the Owner’s Manual

Yes, you need to read your vehicle’s instructions. The owner’s manual for your vehicle, especially its scheduled maintenance section, is very helpful regarding how to take care of your vehicle and keep your vehicle in tip-top shape according to the recommendations of the manufacturer. The manufacturer is the primary expert regarding your vehicle: listen to the manufacturer.

6. Use Online Resources

Google is a vital tool in the belt of a vehicle maintenance DIYer. Use online guides such as videos on Youtube which will provide you with step-by-step walkthroughs of common maintenance-related tasks. You might even end up finding videos and tutorials specific to your year, model and make, eliminating guessing from the process of accessing parts or properly measuring fluids. 

The more you prioritize vehicle maintenance, the more safe you will be on the road in the long run.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of


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