Just like a human, a car needs regular maintenance to be kept healthy, and the more you look after it, the fewer times you’re going to need to take it into the garage for repairs.
But have you ever really considered how much you could be doing yourself, without having to head into the garage and be hit with another bill?
Here are five reasons why you might want to start carrying out your own DIY repairs and maintenance on your car.
To Save Money
The most obvious reason is, of course, to save yourself some cash! Garage bills can be expensive, especially when you realise how simple some of the work being carried out is.
The money that you’ll spend on looking after your car itself will almost certainly save you from further costs further down the line and will likely catch problems a lot earlier on when they’re a lot cheaper to fix.
You’ll also be saving money in the long-term, as your car will run better, meaning you’ll use less fuel and it’ll also have a higher resale value.
It’s Easier Than You Might Think
Nowadays we live in a culture where young people in particular are of the mindset that when something breaks, we simply throw it away and buy a new one, but this shouldn’t be the case!
The idea that cars are now so advanced that we can’t fix them ourselves is a little bit of a myth, and in reality, the fundamentals haven’t actually changed that much.
Many of today’s engines are a little harder to get at, with so much extra equipment under the bonnet and covers that need to be removed, but once you get down to it, engines largely work in similar ways to how they did 30 years ago.
You (Probably) Won’t Break Anything
Much of the reason people are reluctant to carry out maintenance their selves is that they’re scared of messing up and making the problem a whole lot worse.
The thing is though, it’s actually fairly difficult to really damage a car if you do make a mistake.
The worst case scenario is usually that you either have to give up and take the car into the garage or that your repairs only turn out to be a short-term fix.
Cars are very sturdy machines, and your tinkering is hardly likely to set the thing on fire, so be a little bit more confident and take the plunge!
There’s a Lot of Help Available
Even if you’re a complete rookie when it comes to cars, there’s a huge amount of help available out there thanks to the internet.
While back in the day you would have had to flip through a service manual that felt more like a brick, now a quick search on Google or YouTube will throw up a plethora of “How To” guides and video tutorials.
Websites such as AutoMD are an excellent resource, and if you have a tablet, you can easily just prop it up next to the vehicles and follow the steps.
You Usually Don’t Need Specialist Equipment
With cars becoming more and more advanced, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you need all kinds of specialist equipment to make any kind of repairs, but the fact is that most cars are made relatively similarly.
In fact, you can carry out most simple jobs with the following equipment:
- Adjustable wrench
- Torque wrench
- Sock and ratchet set
- Screwdrivers (Phillips and flat head)
You’ll obviously also have to purchase parts if you’re doing a replacement, so a word of warning, make sure you buy genuine OEM (original equipment manufacturer) parts as opposed to aftermarket ones.
We spoke to Volkswagen Motor Parts who said: “When you choose genuine parts, you know you can count on the highest quality.
“Genuine parts are manufactured to strict quality standards imposed by the manufacturer’s engineers so that they exactly fit the vehicle and its requirements.”