Four Ways to Save Money Working On Your Own Car

Many people find a Haynes or a Chilton manual to be a very helpful resource when doing their own work. Both manuals provide step-by-step instructions on how to do lots of different jobs, from the simplest to the more complicated. Depending on how much you plan on doing yourself, the manual will pay for itself very quickly.
You’ll also need to invest in some quality tools and safety equipment like a jack, jack stands and wheel chocks. It will take a little longer for these to pay for themselves, but it can be well worth it in the long run.
Changing your car’s oil is often inexpensive if you take it to a local shop or quick lube specialist. You can still save a little extra money if you do it yourself, but there’s a tradeoff. For many people the money saved isn’t enough to spend the time doing their own.
Some prefer to do their own service because they want to be sure it’s done properly. The dealer will tell you the best oil to use, and just about every parts store has a guide to help you select the proper filter. Sometimes you can save even more money by using coupons or store specials. Buy the stuff in advance if you need to, in order to take advantage of the deals.
Changing your air filter is another way to save money, and it’s possibly the easiest car care job you’ll do. On some cars you don’t have to use any tools. On others it might just take a screwdriver. Here again, the parts store will have a guide to show you which filter to get for your particular car.
Changing spark plug is a little more involved, and its difficulty varies from one car to another. But it’s usually done at the novice level with a few simple tools. It’s a job that rarely needs to be done, but there’s money to be saved if you’re willing to put some time into it. You’ll need a ratchet set and maybe an extension. You might need a special socket and many people like to use a torque wrench. Spark plug wires are also easy to change as well. Here again, the manual and parts store can be pretty helpful.
Changing your coolant can be more of a hassle, but it’s still another way you can save money. One of the most important things is to make sure you’re using the proper type of coolant. It used to be that all coolant was the same. That’s no longer the case and the wrong choice can result in damage to your engine. A call to the dealer can be pretty helpful, or simply buy the coolant from the dealer to avoid the possibility of trouble.

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