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    How To Save Money On Your Car

    Most people are obliged to spend a good part of their income on their car(s) for the entire duration of their adult lives. From the purchase price to maintenance costs, ever-increasing gas prices, and insurance premiums, the expenses are endless and often seem to outweigh the benefits of owning a car. But in a Catch 22 situation, most of us need a car to get to work. This article will list some ways to save money on car expenses.
    Buying a Car:
    1. Comparison shopping:
    Keep an open mind when you set out to buy a car, and be prepared to look at many different options. Compare dealers, makes, models, thoroughly. While this is tedious, it will increase your chances of saving money and driving home in the car you want. Use Kelley Blue Book as a reference point to check if you are getting a fair price or not.
    2. Consider buying a used car.
    A car that has been used even for a couple of years costs significantly less than its brand new counterpart of the same make and model. Besides, unlike a used car, the value of a new car depreciates dramatically the second you buy it, so a used car may be a better option if you plan to sell it in the future.
    3. Hang on to your ride:
    It’s a good idea to keep your car for as long as possible. You lose money on low trade-in values when you switch cars in a short period of time. A reliable, quality car should stand by you for the good part of a decade, so invest once and for all.
    4. Be practical:
    If saving money is your aim, than functionality should be your priority, not appearance. Invest in a reliable, reasonable, mechanically sound car rather than blowing a fortune on something that looks good but won’t give you decent mileage.
    1. Keep your car tuned:
    A car that isn’t regularly or properly tuned guzzles gasoline at an alarming rate. You’ll save money in the long run by keeping it tuned.
    2. Oil and air filters:
    Cleaning your oil as dictated by your owner’s manual and checking your air filter on a monthly basis will extend your engine’s life considerably.
    3. Tires:
    Check your tire pressure regularly, and have them balanced at least once a year. It’s an effort but you’ll be saving money in gasoline mileage and preventing damage to your suspension.
    Buying Gas:
    1. Self Serve:
    Pumping your own gas is 5-10 % cheaper than having someone do it for you. Spread the difference across the span of a year, multiply that amount by all the years you’ll be driving and you’ll be shocked at how much you’ll save in the long run.
    2. Don’t go all the way:
    Topping off your tank could lead you to lose gas if you are parked on a slope or under the sun because the gas might overflow.
    3. Quality:
    Don’t buy the cheapest gasoline available. Your car deserves better. Your engine will suffer if you buy a lower grade than recommended, which will cost you more than you saved on gas in the long run. However, there is no need to spring for premium quality unless your manual recommends it.
    1. Play by the rules:
    Speeding tickets, accidents, arrears of any kind are expensive mistakes whichever way you look at it. Not only will the actual fines and repairs (or deductible, if you have collision coverage) be expensive, but your insurance premiums are likely to go up due to these mistakes. Brush up on your driving skills and follow traffic regulations because a clean record means lower car insurance rates.
    2. Carpool:
    This is a smart thing to do because you’ll be able to get into the car-pool lane and if you split the costs, both you and your companion will be saving money on gas.
    3. Making the most of your fuel:
    The way you drive affects your car’s fuel use. Accelerating gently and sparingly, driving at a constant speed (not too fast and not too slow), turning your air conditioner off when it’s not required are all ways to ensure you’re getting the most out of your gas.
    4. Burn some calories:
    Consider walking, biking or even jogging if your destination is not too far away. This is beneficial to your health, your environment and your wallet. And if you don’t want to work your body, try public transport.
    1. Choosing an insurance company:
    Do not go for an insurance provider simply because it offers you a cheap rate. If it’s an obscure, unreliable company, you will regret it when you need to make a claim. Get car insurance quotes from reputed, reliable, established providers; you’ll be saving money in the long run. An insurance provider with a reputation to protect and the means to pay out is more likely to handle your claims properly.
    2. Coverage:
    Limiting your coverage to the minimum state requirement is unwise and inadequate. Unless your car is over 10 years old, you should ideally have collision, comprehensive, underinsured motorist coverage (UIM), uninsured motorist (UM) coverage, and personal injury protection (PIP), besides the liability coverage required. Having thorough car insurance coverage could save you a fortune in the event of an accident. One way of saving money is combining your home and car insurance under the same insurance coverage.
    3. Discounts:
    Many insurance companies offer discounts, which can significantly lower your rates. Some of the common car insurance discounts include defensive driver’s credit, good student discount, theft-protection discount, airbag safety discount, etc.
    With these tips, you’ll save money from the moment you purchase your car, until the last insurance payment you ever make. In the long run, that’s probably enough to pay for four years of college, a retirement fund, or even a new car! So be practical, be careful, and drive safe.

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