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Average Cost of Car Maintenance

06.03.2023
1010
15 min.

Routine car maintenance is important for the health and longevity of your car. It may save you cash in the long run by preventing expensive repairs and rental vehicle fees. While figuring out how much money you'll need to buy an automobile, including the car maintenance cost.

Average Cost of Car Maintenance

Here, you will learn about what to expect to pay for routine auto maintenance, including how much each repair should cost and how often you should have these services done.

Why Car Maintenance is Important

  • Avoid costly auto repairs by maintaining a reliable vehicle. Failure to do routine maintenance increases the likelihood of serious problems with the vehicle's engine and other systems. Engine and component failures accumulate with use. If you keep up with your car's maintenance, you might stop minor problems from turning into expensive disasters. The engine will operate smoothly and without overheating if the oil level is maintained at the manufacturer's specifications. Similarly, keeping the brake fluid and the power transmission at their specified levels will keep those systems functioning well so you can relax and enjoy the ride. If you want your vehicle to last long, keep the coolant at the specified levels. Keep your automobile in shape, so breakdowns, braking difficulties, and engine breakdowns will be less likely to occur.
  • Safer driving environment. The last thing you want to happen while driving on deserted roads is for your automobile to break down. Getting prompt assistance might be challenging when you're stopped far from any major city or village. When traveling on desolate roads, you should always take the appropriate safety precautions. Getting your automobile checked regularly for issues like a loose belt, a dead battery, or a leaking hose is important. The belts are vital to the operation of various components, including the air conditioner compressor, air injection pump, cooling fan, and power steering pump. Loose belts prevent the proper operation of these systems and may cause further issues.
  • Save money on gas. Rising gas prices are a major financial burden for drivers. However, if you pay attention to your vehicle's upkeep, you may reduce the amount of money you spend on gas. You can save money on gas by keeping your car in top shape and getting the most out of every gallon. Keeping your car in good condition may increase your gas economy by as much as 40%. Think of all the money you might save by maintaining it up with your car's routine maintenance.
  • Lessen the car's depreciation. Your vehicle loses value as it ages. Before purchasing a used automobile, consumers should investigate the vehicle's history to ensure it was properly cared for by its former owners. The buyer may want to know the car's history of care by consulting the vehicle's maintenance records. Nobody wants to buy a vehicle only to spend a few thousand dollars fixing it up and replacing worn-out components. Take good care of your automobile if you want to sell it soon.
  • Routine Maintenance. Keeping up with your car's scheduled maintenance ensures it continues functioning properly, protecting you and your passengers from harm. While the total maintenance costs may vary depending on factors such as vehicle model, mileage driven annually, and geographic location, a few things are true for all automobiles. Visiting the mechanic for general maintenance is recommended every 5,000 miles. However, particular information about your car's requirements may be found in the handbook.
  • Oil changes. Depending on how frequently and how far you drive will determine how often you need to attend to this aspect of automobile maintenance. You still need to change the oil every 12 months, regardless of how many miles you put on your automobile. Because of advancements in automobile technology, the once-recommended interval of 3,000 miles between oil changes is now 5,000. Full-synthetic oil may allow a car's engine to go 10,000 miles or more before servicing. An oil change's average car maintenance cost is between $25 and $55. Maintenance costs may go up to $75.4 if synthetic oil is used instead of regular oil.
  • Windshield wiper replacement. It's frustrating to drive in the rain only to find that your car's windshield wipers aren't performing as effectively as they once did. That's why it's important to replace your wipers every six months to a year or whenever you observe signs of wear and tear. If you need to hire someone to fix your wipers, you shouldn't have to spend more than $85. You can save at least $25 if you purchase the blades and put them in yourself.
  • New battery. The lifespan of your automobile's battery ranges from three to five years, depending on conditions such as how often you drive, how often you park, and how often you leave the car alone. Besides leaving the outside lights on, leaving the interior lights on will quickly deplete the battery power in your vehicle. An automobile battery replacement may cost anywhere from $60 to $200, depending on the vehicle's manufacturer, model, the quality of the battery you choose, and geographic area.
  • Brake pads. Brake pad replacement intervals are directly proportional to the frequency with which brakes are used. One factor might be the ratio of highway miles to city miles. Brake pads wear out faster in city driving than in rural travel or on motorways. Thus, city drivers can expect to change their pads more often. There are a few telltale indicators that maintenance on your brake pads is in order. To begin with, you could hear a screeching noise when you hit the brakes. Newer cars have indicators that advise you when to be serviced, so if you own one, monitor the dashboard. Changing your brake pads will cost you between $35 and $150 for all four wheels and another $115 to $270 for the work. Whether you need to replace the pads on both axles or one affects how much you will have to spend, as do factors like your location, the make and model of your vehicle, the brake pads you use, and how many axles require work.
  • Tire rotation or replacement. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or NHTSA recommends changing your tires every six years or 60,000 miles of driving, whichever comes first. Depending on the tire quality you select and your vehicle's make and model, the cost to replace all four tires might range from $400 to $1800. The rotation of tires is a crucial part of routine maintenance. Every 5,000 to 8,000 miles, you should have an oil change, typically costing $35 to $45 but may be included in additional maintenance at certain garages or from some dealerships. Remember that regular maintenance, like balance and alignment, is required to get the best vehicle tires.

Unexpected Repairs

As with any major purchase, vehicle ownership will always include unexpected repair expenses. Something like a fender accident or a spill that stains the inside of your automobile might fall under this category. Whatever the situation, it's smart to save money if you need to make sudden repairs.

Although you cannot prevent these expenses, planning for the worst-case situation might help ease stress in the long run. Finding a reliable repair shop that charges reasonable rates is also important. Before shelling out cash for a repair, check with your insurer to see what's covered. Here are some of the common maintenance issues and the estimated costs to repair them:

  • Minor collisions = $50 to $3,000
  • Weather-related damage = $1,000 to $3,500
  • Dead battery = $45 to $350
  • Broken starter motor = $80 to $1,100
  • Flat or blown tire = $10 to $250
  • Transmission issue = $1,200 to $6,000
  • Engine overheating = $100 to $1,500.

Parts Replacing

Most of your car's components will eventually need to be replaced due to normal use or more serious problems. The replacement cost will be determined by the specific component being changed out. 

Vehicle type and current market prices are two frequent contributors to price. Inflation and a lack of readily available car components also directly affect consumers.

Most times, mechanics don't have spare batteries, gearboxes, or brakes in stock and must purchase them specifically for the vehicle. Parts still need to be completed, and the shortage has slowed the repair process. Because car parts prices have gone up, you should be ready to pay more than usual for replacement parts. Because of problems in the supply chain brought on by the epidemic, fewer automobiles are now available than before.

For instance, to get the most out of your new tires, replace them every 25,000 to 80,000 miles or every six years, whichever comes first, and plan on spending between $45 and $250 on each one. It is recommended that air filters for the engine and the cabin be changed every 15,000 to 30,000 miles, and the cost for this service should range from $35 to $80. And for replacing the brake pads, the frequency should be every 10,000 to 20,000 miles, and the projected cost is somewhere between $115 to $370.

How Often do You Need Maintenance?

Most motorists see servicing as a costly hassle that they would rather avoid. However, working with a reliable and knowledgeable technician may make service a breeze rather than a headache. Many of today's automobiles have fifty or more moving parts that must be checked and fine-tuned.

From oil changes and inspections to tune-ups and adjustments of mechanical and electrical parts, a lot goes into keeping your car in top shape. While it's true that automobile maintenance may be pricey, the alternative of letting damage accumulate due to neglect can be considerably more costly. If you want to save money on repairs and maintenance during the life of your automobile, getting regular oil changes and tune-ups is a must.

However, how often you should have your car serviced is determined by various factors, including how often you drive, how you drive, the weather where you live, and the manufacturer's suggestions. To keep your car in top shape, it's important to track when the manufacturer suggests taking it in for service.

How to Save Money on Car Maintenance

Continue reading to discover how you may be a maintenance expert with these and other techniques.

  • Be aware of routine car maintenance costs. The market cost of car maintenance, such as oil changes, tire rotations, and regular maintenance, may vary greatly depending on the shop you visit. Before going to the mechanic, research to ensure you're getting charged reasonably.
  • Consult your owner's manual. Yes, you must read the directions. The owner's handbook for your automobile, especially the section on scheduled maintenance, is a valuable resource for caring for and maintaining your vehicle under manufacturer instructions. Listen to the experts in your automobile.
  • Do whatever you can by yourself. Many driveway maintenance jobs are simple to do. Changing spark plugs, oil, and filters and checking fluids are all tasks the ordinary driver can do. You may save money on the dealership or mechanic labor expenses by doing as much maintenance as possible. You could even be able to discover cheaper components and supplies. You'll also have time to check on other potential concerns with your vehicle, such as fluid levels, squeaky sounds, and aged hoses or belts.

FAQ

How much is maintenance on a car monthly?

A minimum of one hundred dollars should be put aside each month as a budget item for the upkeep of your vehicle. This amount should be adjusted based on the vehicle's current state.

What is full maintenance on a car?

Changing the oil, rotating the tires, checking the fluid levels, and other things are all part of routine auto maintenance. Timing and serpentine belts are two types of belts that should be addressed by automobile owners, even though they need periodic replacement. Timing belts should be changed around every 60,000 miles, according to most mechanics.

Why is car maintenance expensive?

The price of replacement components is the primary contributor to the high expense of keeping an automobile in good working order. There is an increase in the expense of necessary maintenance for older automobiles to keep them on the road. There are also additional safety systems in current automobiles, and any one of those systems may fail, resulting in costly repairs that could run into the thousands.

How often should a car be serviced?

Maintenance on a vehicle should be performed at the manufacturer's recommended intervals, every 12,000 miles or once annually. This suggestion is offered by the manufacturer and the professionals working on the vehicle.
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