Top 5 Vehicle DIY Repairs Under $100
Owning and maintaining a vehicle can be an expensive proposition. In order to keep your vehicle in optimal condition, it is essential to get it serviced on a regular basis and promptly address issues that can crop up.
All this can severely dent your pocket.
A recent Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) survey estimates that routine maintenance checks alone can cost anywhere between $500 and $700 annually.
By undertaking some of the maintenance and repair work on your own, you can save a good amount of money in the long term, or purchase salvaged cars that need a small amount of repair work.
Here are some minor repairs that you can carry out for some major savings!
Changing the Battery
This might be the simplest of auto repairs that you can undertake. The average lifetime of an auto battery is somewhere between four and five years.
You can get an approximate idea of when to watch out for your battery by checking out the date which is stamped on the battery.
And if your car suddenly refuses to start, you can use a multimeter to check if the battery is dead.
A new battery is likely to cost you under $100 and if you take it to a shop for replacement, it is likely that it will cost you at least twice as much if not more.
The car manual will help you locate the exact location of the battery while a pair of wrenches is the only tool you need to finish the replacement. Disconnect the battery before you start loosening the bolts that keep it fixed to the mounting bracket.
Fixing Damaged Headlights or Taillights
It is important that all the lights on your vehicle are working every time you take it out.
While replacing a light can cost you at least $100 at a garage, you can get the job done for as little as $25 which is the cost of the bulb. Just take the old bulb with you to the store and get an identical replacement to start on your DIY vehicle repair.
While attempting to handle the lights, make sure that they are not still warm, as recently used bulbs can be hot enough to burn your skin.
Finally, complete the task with clean fingers as grease on the bulb can lead to it burning out quickly.
Replacing Dirty Air Filters
An air filter is what protects the engine of your vehicle from the outside dust and dirt.
When the filter gets dirty, it can have an impact on the mileage as well as the engine performance.
A replacement filter is likely to cost around $25 and you can save around $100 in labor costs with a DIY vehicle repair project.
In most vehicles, you just need to unscrew the plastic lid on the side of the engine and take out the old filter. Then, put in the new filter and screw the lid back on.
Repairing Drive Belts
The first sign of problems with the drive belts is when vehicles make a squealing sound when you start it or upon using specific accessories.
Take a look at the drive belt to see if it is loose or damaged, showing signs of wear or cracked in places. Tightening a loose belt might solve the problem while in other cases, you will have to replace the belt. In the latter event, just thread the new belt through the route of the old one and you are done!
NOTE: as a general rule, you should replace your s-belt every 50,000 to 100,000 km.
Switching Windshield Wiper Blades
The assistants at your local auto parts store will be able to help you find the right blades for your vehicle depending on its make and model.
Usually, all you need to do is slide out the old ones and slip on the new wipers and you are done. While this can result in a bill amounting anywhere between $100 and $150 at a garage, you can find the wipers at under $40 in retail stores.