Car repairs are something no one wants to deal with, but almost everyone will be forced to go through with some sort of repairs in their driving lifetime. It is very important to know how to deal with your vehicle before it needs repairs and even if it needs repairs.
Of course, the best way to deal with repairs is to minimize the likelihood that they will be necessary. This means regular maintenance (which you might think of like repairs, but try to think of it as preventative) and keeping an eye on the basic parts of your car, truck, or SUV that it is reasonable to know a bit about.
As mentioned, you should regularly book service appointments and scheduled maintenance to make sure things stay up to date and that small things are caught and fixed before they become a big deal. It is also helpful to get a mechanic to look at your vehicle regularly as he or she will know what needs doing, when you can expect to do it, and how much it will cost. It is a good safety system to do regular maintenance and it can also help with budgeting for necessary repairs.
Keep in mind that many repairs will need to be done regardless of your maintenance schedule. Things can just happen, sure, but it is also likely that a lot of the fixes will have to do with regular wear and tear. Therefore, before you try to pull the blanket over your head and deny that you will ever need to deal with those nagging problems under the hood, you should know that you will definitely need to prepare for something going wrong. It is life, and it just happens.
Start with your regular maintenance, and keep an eye on other things, too.
You can easily check your oil and make sure it is up to par. This means simply removing the dipstick, wiping off the oil, dipping it back in, and seeing what oil is on the stick. If it is between the high and low lines, and is not pitch black, you’re probably OK, but if it is below the line and tarry or very black, you should get it looked at. It’s easy to deal with these issues on a regular basis, as you can schedule oil changes every 3 months, or every 5000 kilometers. It is part of a good maintenance routine to do this regularly. Big problems can occur otherwise, and for less than $50 you should be able to find a great place to get it done, if you do not know how to do it yourself.
Also check under your hood on a regular basis to make sure your fluids are up to level and that your battery is ok. Sometimes you’ll notice low fluids or your battery might be leaking a bit. These are issues that are not going to be extreme issues, but can certainly be costly if you let them go for too long.
Basically, be proactive, learn a bit about your vehicle’s systems, talk to a trusted mechanic or shop, and get a routine down. Preventative maintenance is the best way to minimize car repairs!