Expensive Auto Repairs in 2021. From North Raleigh to the North Hills and from Charlotte to the Outer Banks, people all across North Carolina are really hoping that the year 2021 will be much better than the year 2020, which for millions of Americans was extremely challenging. The New Year is always a time for reflection and hope; this time around, we have the promise of COVID-19 vaccines, effective treatments, and economic recovery. As you start thinking about New Year’s resolutions in January, we invite you to consider preventative auto maintenance as a means to avoid having to shell out for costly auto repairs in 2021.
According to data from a survey conducted by consumer research firm DigniFI a few months after the World Health Organization announced the coronavirus pandemic, car repair was certainly on the minds of American drivers in 2020. More than 400 auto dealerships and service shops participated in the survey, which revealed more than 55% of drivers decided to postpone repairs and even scheduled maintenance because of financial concerns. Many drivers who were furloughed did not put as many miles on their vehicles compared to 2019, but many others who used to share rides or take public transportation ended up driving more because of contagion concerns. Expensive Auto Repairs in 2021
Avoiding Expensive Mistakes can Save You Money
Interestingly, the DigniFI survey also indicated that quite a few drivers actually paid more attention to maintenance schedules and routine services such as oil changes; the reasons for this included:
- Ensuring their cars will take them where they need to go in case of an emergency.
- Avoiding the unpleasant surprise of expensive auto repairs at a time income is uncertain.
- Wanting to keep their cars on the road as long as possible.
The three reasons above are prudent enough for any driver to formulate a New Year’s resolution involving car maintenance. Even though vaccination campaigns got underway in late 2020, the reality of the pandemic is that we still face a few more months of restrictions and uncertainty. It makes perfect sense for Americans to pay more attention to their vehicles at this time.
With all the above in mind, here are some recommendations to make your resolution easier to keep:
Get Acquainted With Your Owner’s Manual
Vehicle owner’s manuals are not exactly pleasant or entertaining to read, but they provide important information such as maintenance schedules, which are crucial in terms of keeping your car on the road as long as possible. If you no longer have the original manual, you can request a copy by contacting the automaker, although you can also find digital versions on the manufacturer’s website. Alternatively, websites such as Edmunds keep a collection of manuals dating back to the 1990s; all you need ins the vehicle identification number (VIN), which you can get from your insurance card or registration form.
Start Off the New Year With an Oil Change
Of all the car repair and service items listed on the maintenance schedule, oil and filter changes are among the most crucial. The frequency of the oil change will vary across models and mileage, but if enough time has lapsed for you to not be able to remember when was the last time you had one done, it is better to err on the side of caution and bring your car to the shop in January. Keep in mind that our technicians will let you know if they spot signs of malfunction or potential issues when they perform this service. In cases when high-mileage cars are burning oil at a faster rate, you may need to check oil levels once a month and refill as needed.
Check the Levels of Your Car’s Essential Fluids
Along with engine oil, there are other fluids that should be checked on a monthly basis. Antifreeze or coolant, for example, is important to check during cold weather periods. Temperatures in the Raleigh region were pretty pleasant over the Christmas and New Year holidays. However, they are expected to drop in January. The last thing you want is having to deal with an engine seized by a frozen coolant. Brake fluid levels should be check when the time comes to change the oil.
Power steering and windshield washer fluids should be checked every couple of months. If you want all fluids checked and replenished as needed, you can bring your car to the shop. The advantage in this regard is that our technicians can review the lines, hoses, seals, and gaskets. This is to ensure that they are not leaking fluids; for the most part, repairing or replacing these parts will not be too expensive.
Check the Condition of Your Tires
The proper PSI levels of your tires will vary according to seasonal temperatures. You can find this information in the owner’s manual or get if from our technicians. Too many drivers forget about the need for tire rotation. Which is essential in order to extend the functional life of the tires. Is your tire tread wearing off unevenly? Call us today for a tire check and to avoid expensive auto repairs in 2021.