Chances are, your car is one of the largest investments you will make other than purchasing a home. And it only makes sense to protect your investment and get the most use out of it that you possible can.
There is nothing more important to your vehicle’s longevity than regular maintenance. But many car owners believe that the cost of regularly scheduled maintenance will be very expensive, and it can be if you are paying someone else to complete the routine tasks.
But DIY auto body repair and maintenance can be very easy to learn and will certainly save you a lot of money on costly service and future repair bills.
Keep it Running Great
Changing the oil in your vehicle is one of the most common maintenance tasks that it needs and will pay off more than any other service. Not only will regular oil changes improve the life of your engine but it will also help it to work more efficiently. Most vehicles owners manually recommend an oil change every 3000 miles but it can be more frequent under certain conditions. You could expect to pay $50- $100 for an oil change at a dealership or service facility. But you could complete an oil change at home for less than $25 even if you need to purchase a few tools. Then each of the next oil changes will be even cheaper. You can go online and watch a video to show you the exact process and be completed in less than an hour using only about 4 tools and 3-4 supplies such as gloves and a towel or rag. Another key component in your car running smoothly is the spark plug. These are what provide the electricity for your engine to fire smoothly. If you are noticing misfires or problems accelerating, then it could be time for new spark plugs. Instead of paying $100 for this service, spend as little as $20 on new plugs and watch a short video to learn how to replace them yourself. It is about as simple as using a wrench to remove the old ones and then putting in the new ones. If you can replace a lightbulb then spark plugs should be no issue.
There are also a few simple diy repairs that you can complete to save money and keep your vehicle safe to drive. The first is replacing worn wiper blades. Many times, you will not know that the blades are worn out until it is too late and you are unable to see clearly during bad weather. The blades can be damaged from ice and snow over the winder or from the heat of excessive sun in the summer so it is good to visually inspect the blades every month or so. If you see torn rubber then stop into an auto parts store to pick up a new set. You can install the new blades in about 5 minutes and know that you will have a clear windshield during the next storm. Another simple but critical replacement on your vehicle is lightbulbs. Drivers need to check all of the lights on their vehicle regularly to be sure that they are all working properly. Not only can this save you the cost of a ticket but it can also be the difference in being in an accident or not. Changing a lightbulb on your vehicle is not as complicated as it might first appear. In most cases all that you will need is a Philips head screwdriver and the replacement bulb which will only cost a few dollars. Search online for the light bulb replacement video for your make and model of car and be amazed at how simple the process is.
Keep Your Vehicle Looking Great
Not only does a small spot of rust look bad on your vehicle but it is also an issue that will get worse if not corrected quickly. Surface rust is easy to correct and will prevent the deterioration from eating completely through a metal panel on your vehicle. It is pretty simple to complete a do it yourself auto body rust repair. First, be sure to have a dust mask and goggles to protect your eyes and to avoid breathing the fine material created when sanding. With your safety gear on, sand the area by hand with 80 grit sandpaper. You will need to remove all of the rust and paint so that you have bare metal to repaint. You can also use an electric sanding wheel if the area is larger. Once the area is free of rust and smooth, wash with soapy water. After the area is completely dry, mask of the area that you will be painting with masking tape. Cover a large area as paint overspray is common and it will make the repair look much more professional without overspray around the repair area. Then prime the area with several thin coats of primer, sanding between coats for a more high quality finished product. Next, apply several thin coats of touch up paint to the repair area. The secret is to apply several very light coats and allow them to dry completely. This patience will give you a professional quality finish at a fraction of the cost of having the work done at a body shop.
Save Money and Protect Your Investment
Unexpected car repairs are never a welcome expense. Not only can it break your budget but it can also leave you stranded without a vehicle. But investing a little time to learn about diy auto body repair and maintenance can save you time and money in the long run. With all of the detailed videos available online, it is easy to find the make and model of your vehicle and watch videos about doing small body work repairs, light bulb and wiper blade replacement and even oil changes. Seeing the project completed in a short video will give you the confidence to do your own projects and will save you a lot of money.