Whether you’re new to car ownership or you’ve had several vehicles over the years, you know that monthly car payments and auto insurance are not the only costs associated with having a car. Of course, there’s gas. But you also need to budget for auto maintenance and auto repair costs.
If your car is under warranty, check to see what’s covered. Some auto repairs will be covered, but routine car maintenance is not. Keep reading to learn about some common repair costs as well as car maintenance requirements and costs.
The bottom line is you will want to budget nearly $800 for yearly car maintenance, even for a new car. The budgeted amount should go up as your car gets older, and you require some of the big-ticket items. Source: AAA
Your brakes keep you safe – but they wear out. You should plan on brake pad replacement every 25,000-50,000 miles. The timing for brake rotors and drum replacement will vary depending on the age of your car and your driving habits. If you hear strange noises when you hit the brakes, schedule brake repair right away.
Cost: Average of $150 per rotor, or $300 total for brake pad replacement.
Your tires will only last so long. A good set of tires should last about 50,000 miles. You may be able to go longer before replacing your tires if you get regular tire rotation (see below). If your car is older and you’re planning on getting a new car, you can budget for cheaper tires. But if you plan to keep your car, go for mid-range tires that will last longer.
Cost: $600-$1200 for a full set.
You should plan on needing to replace your car’s battery every 3-5 years. It depends on how much you drive and how well you take care of your vehicle. You can help your car battery last longer by now powering accessories when the car engine is off – for example, charging a phone or GPS. Your auto mechanic will check your battery just about every time they pop the car hood and clean any corrosion from the battery terminals and clamps.
Cost: $50-$120 depending on the make and model of your vehicle.
Routine Car Maintenance
This next section addresses car maintenance, which isn’t technically auto repair. But if you don’t do regular maintenance on your car, it can lead to costly auto repair bills. Let’s take a look:
Getting a regular oil change is probably one of the most important things you can do to keep your vehicle in good running condition. It used to be recommended that you get an oil change every 3,000 miles or every 3 months, but that’s changed.
With modern lubricants, you now should plan on getting an oil change every 5-10,000 miles. Your car’s manual will have specifics. Many newer vehicles have a dashboard monitor that reminds you when to change the oil. Pay attention to those dashboard lights.
Even if you don’t drive very far or very often, you should still plan on getting an oil change every 6 months.
Cost: $35-75 for conventional oil and $65-$125 for synthetic oil. Source: KBB
A lot of people plan on rotating their tires every time they get an oil change. It makes it easy to remember. Regular tire rotation helps even out the wear and tear on your tires. This will help your tires last longer and help your car’s suspension.
Cost: Average of $65. May be free with other services, or where you purchased your tires.
You will get a wheel alignment as part of tire replacement. But auto manufacturers recommend getting a wheel alignment every 2 years as well. Properly aligned tires will give you a smoother ride, prevent uneven tire wear, and prevent suspension problems.
Cost: Average $65.
The Only Auto Repair Shop You’ll Ever Need
National Budget Muffler has two convenient locations. Our auto repair shop in Bel Air is on Tollgate Road near Harford Mall. Our shop in Joppa is conveniently located on Pulaski Highway. Some of our customers have been bringing their vehicles to us for decades. That’s because we are committed to offering quality auto repair work at competitive prices.
We will give you our honest opinion when we look at your vehicle. If there are urgent needs as well as long-term auto repair needs, we’ll break those down for you. We understand not everyone has an unlimited amount of money to pour into their car. We will do what it takes to make your car safe to be out on the road.
Call 410-838-1706 in Bel Air, and 410-679-0091 in Joppa to schedule auto maintenance and auto repair.