You’re a car fanatic. And as such, you’re probably prepared to pay a little more than the average joe to get the best out of your vehicle. You’re the kind of driver who insists on the best and you’re wary of cutting corners when it comes to your car. You make sure that you use premium fuel to give you better performance on the road. You make sure that when your car needs servicing or repairs that you use a reputable shop that uses genuine parts. You pay to get your vehicle hand washed because you don’t trust an automated car wash with the immaculate finish on your pride and joy. You’ve even changed your driving style to avoid putting too much strain on your vehicle and help give it a longer life.
Still, just because you’re a discerning motorist doesn’t mean that you’re willing to be taken for a ride. You expect quality and you’re prepared to pay for it but you don’t expect to pay over the odds. There’s a difference between being frugal and being a cheapskate. As such, the discerning motorist should always be wary of ways in which they could be over spending. As such, here are some ways in which your car might just be costing you too much…
One of the most common ways in which many of us are overspending is on our insurance. While you certainly don’t want to leave your pride and joy unprotected on the road, you also should be wary of overspending on insurance when you can get the same comprehensive cover elsewhere for a fraction of the price.
Many of us are happy to let our car insurance roll over year on year, sticking with the same provider with the expectation that they will reward our loyalty… but the unfortunate truth is that the insurance companies are counting on your loyalty. Or at the very least they’re banking on the fact that you’ll be too busy or preoccupied to see what other providers are offering.
Very often renewal of your policy is much more expensive than seeing what offers you could get elsewhere. Take a look at these reviews from Metromile customers and you’ll see what you should be looking for in an insurer. Taking the time to look for better always offers is always worth it.
GOING FOR REPAIRS AND SERVICING AT INDEPENDENT GARAGES
It’s a common fallacy that main dealers overcharge on their parts, repairs, servicing and maintenance. However, if you want to keep your vehicle in perfect condition to save you costs in the long term, using a main dealer (who will exclusively use genuine parts and fluids and whose mechanics will be trained extensively by the brand) is the way to go.
What’s more, and not a lot of people know this, main dealers have more money behind them so they are better placed to give you loyalty discounts if you continue to use them. So there are many reasons why using independent shops is a false economy.
ARE YOU NEGLECTING YOUR TIRES?
In a way, our cars are just like us… they are what they eat. The quality of the fuel we put into our cars and our bodies alike plays a big part in determining how well they will perform for us. However, if we neglect our tires, it’s possible that we could make our cars “overeat” to compensate for the loss of potential energy coming from the wheels.
And if you’re mostly or exclusively using premium fuels, that can get very expensive very quickly. Make sure you know what your manufacturer’s recommended tire pressure is for your vehicle. Under inflation can not only increase fuel costs, it can also reduce the life expectancy of your tires by as much as 25% and make your vehicle less responsive, especially when cornering.
Speaking of your tires, if you currently have winter tires on your vehicle, be sure to remove them once the weather warms back up. The special compounds that make them so useful in the ice and snow can wear down quickly on warm roads.
YOU’RE KEEPING TOO MUCH JUNK IN THE TRUNK
Nobody relishes the idea of emptying their vehicle out regularly. Let’s face it, we’ve all got better things to do. But when we leave our belongings in the car they can tend to stockpile over time. And never underestimate the effect that the extra weight can have on your tires and your fuel consumption.
There’s a difference between demanding the best for your car and not knowing when you’re overspending.
Photo Credit: Taras Makarenko