As the owner of a vehicle, you assume numerous and reoccurring financial obligations to keep it running. Every month, season, and year, you’re bound to encounter maintenance problems that will require repair. How often you encounter such maintenance problems, and their severity, depends on the vehicle, model, age, and how often you drive it. Fortunately, there are some self-maintenance car hacks you can use to help manage the cost.
Regular Car Maintenance Is Important
Modern vehicles require less maintenance than vehicles manufactured in previous decades. Depending on the specifications of the vehicle model, you need to get it checked regularly for various maintenance issues – at least every 20,000 to 60,000 miles. Once an average vehicle reaches 100,000 miles or more, the rate of maintenance needs increase. Plus, they become costlier. There is no single metric for repair cost averages that applies to all car owners.
Still, the average cost for car maintenance repairs is about $400. Some statistics state that you may pay about $100 a month on basic maintenance costs. Unless you are mechanically inclined, you should know when to attempt repairs on your own, and when not to try. Excluding major repair work, there are many simple car hacks you can do yourself. Why pay for maintenance repairs you can manage on your own?
Repair Minor Dents With a Plunger
If you have a dent or ding of minor to medium severity, a household plunger may be the solution. Pour some warm to hot water over the dent, apply a plunger, push it in, and then slowly pull at it. The minor dent or ding should pop out and disappear.
Use Toothpaste to Clean Oxidized Headlights
Your car headlights are made from a transparent form of plastic or polycarbonate. Over time, your headlights can become extremely foggy, cloudy, and stained with debris particles. Cloudy and foggy headlights pose a serious safety hazard.
Instead of replacing or paying a mechanic to clean them, you can clean them yourself. The abrasive component of toothpaste can clean your headlights. First, clean the headlights with soapy water, then allow to air dry. Cover your headlight borders with masking tape to prevent accidental scraping.
Apply toothpaste to a washcloth and clean each headlight. Use slow cleaning movements in concentric circles. Spend about five minutes cleaning each headlight. Use as much toothpaste and water as necessary. Rinse with water and then allow to air dry.
Repair Minor Windshield Cracks With Nail Polish
Minor cracks in your windshield can grow and expand over time. Worsening cracks can necessitate the need for a complete windshield replacement. You can potentially repair minor, small cracks in your windshield with nail polish. Apply nail polish to the crack. When it dries, the crack should be nearly invisible. Also, the dried nail polish should keep the crack from expanding further.
Inspection is Prevention
Perform routine daily inspections of your vehicle. Do a daily walkaround of the vehicle to check for problems. Have your vehicle professionally inspected by a mechanic on schedule. Check for burgeoning problems before they develop into serious problems. Repair maintenance hacks are invaluable. Still, the best way to reduce repair bills is to notice problems before they get worse.
Do you have any self-maintenance car hacks? Share them with us in the comments below!