While having a car can be great and convenient, it can also be expensive. From car payments and insurance to gas and maintenance, it keeps you opening your wallet throughout each month. However, there are ways to cut down your car-related costs when trying to get your finances in order. Here are some must-knows!

Stop Overspending on Gas

Let’s face it: gas is a necessary evil. No matter what we do, we have to spend money on gas. There are ways, however, not to spend too much. How? Here are some ideas:

  • Your car isn’t for hanging out in; it is for transportation. If you’re not driving, the engine should be off rather than burning fuel for no reason.
  • Stop speeding! Any speed over 60 mph is burning fuel at an aggressive rate. Stop speeding and drive well within the speed limit to avoid wasting your money.
  • Cruise, cruise, cruise. When it is safe to do so, like on the freeway, set your cruise control at a reasonable speed (see point above) and let your engine run in efficiency mode.
  • Roll up to red lights and stop signs rather than making a hard brake. This helps reduce effort, and thus gas consumption, that your engine makes when stopping or slowing.
  • Take off the lead shoes and forget the lead foot. Heavy accelerating burns gas, and that is not a good thing if you don’t want to burn cash.

Get Friendly With your Mechanic

Servicing your car can be a pain. Waiting hours in a shop while the mechanic magically finds things to charge you for can be a frustrating experience. This is, however, a better way to spend money on your car than waiting until something breaks down and you need to pay for a replacement. By servicing your car regularly, you avoid greater costs down the road.

This doesn’t mean, however, that you necessarily need to change your oil every 3,000 miles.  Newer models and more efficient oils have made oil changes last longer, so check with your mechanic about what is recommended for your particular car.

Efficiency is Actually Key

Next, think about efficiency over flashy. Our culture is all about getting the latest and greatest whatever-it-may-be, even when it comes to cars. This, however, can obviously be  costly. Rather than trading in your car every 100,000 miles, consider driving your car while it runs in decent condition (which hopefully, after regular maintenance, will be hundreds of thousands of miles).

When you do have to replace your car, consider the efficiency of the make and model you are purchasing. Consider the cost of replacement parts in the event you do need to make repairs.. Give your future self the opportunity to thank you and make a wise purchase.

Having a car is certainly a luxury, so don’t let me spoil that exciting investment for you. Just make a smart choice, so you won’t find yourself with empty pockets. With a few extra tweaks in your car habits, you can save money and enjoy your ride for years to come! If you need extra tips on getting your finances and credit in order, feel free to visit our website or give us a call!

Do you have great tips that help you keep car costs down? Please share them!

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