How can you cut costs with your car?
The Australian Automobile Association recently reported that the average household is paying more than ever before in land transport costs. With an increase from 13.3 to 13.6 per cent over the four quarters ending March 2017, the 0.3 per cent increase works out to an average increase of $686 per household.
If you’re paying off your car loan, you’re probably looking to keep your vehicle costs down, so let’s have a look at some of the best ways to save cash on your annual car costs.
Regular services are a great way to keep your car healthy. If your mechanic can spot problem areas early, it could save you a lot of money and hassle down the track. For example, a consistent unaddressed oil leak could persist until you have no oil, forcing your engine to run dry and causing major issues. Leaving it until you break down is not advised – between getting a tow, your mechanic’s labour and replacement parts, the price of repair can add up to quite a lot. Why not take a pre-emptive approach and drop it for a service every six months or 15,000 kilometres.
Tyre pressure is something you should check monthly. Over or under inflated tyres can end up costing you a lot more in fuel. Without delving too deeply into the physics at play, the optimal tyre pressure recommended in your car’s manual is designed to reduce resistance. If the tyres are over or under inflated, this resistance can increase and subsequently your car will work harder, using approximately 3 per cent more fuel in the process, according to Beaurepaires.
Stick to the speed limit
You should always drive responsibly! You’re not in a race, so speeding between red lights won’t win you any trophies. Not only does this put other drivers and pedestrians at risk, it also means you’re using far more fuel than necessary. Coupled with the additional risk of getting caught, less fuel efficiency and speeding fines, which are all additional costs you do not need, so ease off on the accelerator.