It's one thing when your mechanic tells you that there's an urgent problem that needs to be fixed on your car; it's another when they give you a high-pressure sales pitch to get a costly transmission flush. You can save a lot of money by skipping the optional extras, and paying attention to your vehicle's maintenance schedule and history instead.
Photo by Robert Couse-Baker.
You should never neglect your vehicle's regular maintenance, and we're not saying that you shouldn't trust your mechanic's opinion on what's worth getting done on your car, but a little education about your vehicle's maintenance schedule goes a long way. Brush up on what your manufacturer suggests you have done at what intervals, and you'll be in a better position to resist when that "complimentary 100-point inspection" turns up a "sudden" need to get your air filters replaced.
The Simple Dollar suggests you save your vehicle's maintenance history, so you always have an easy way to look back and see what you've had done and when, then line it up with your maintenance schedule. aCar for Android can help you take it with you, but even a spreadsheet will do. Knowing your schedule and having a maintenance log will put you in a much better position when you go to your dealer or mechanic to get regular maintenance done.
How do you track your car's maintenance history, and how do you avoid spending too much on optional "repairs" when you visit your mechanic? Share your tips in the comments below.
Don't Get Optional Stuff During Maintenance [The Simple Dollar]