Buying a car is possibly one of the biggest expenses you will ever undertake. Once you own a car, you would also have to foot ongoing expenses to maintain and operate your car. Sometimes these costs may seem to pile up to be much more than you had planned for. Here are a few tips that will help you keep your costs under control.
Save money on car insurance
To drive on Indian roads, getting your car insured is a must. While you should get as expansive a coverage as you need, you also need to keep the premiums reasonable. Here are a few tips to do so:
- Choose a credible insurer. Dependable insurers such as Bharti AXA GI can help out with comprehensive car insurance plans.
- Let your insurer know of all the safety features your car has. This will help lower your premiums as your car will be considered safe
- Choose the right deductible amount
- Avoid unnecessary add-ons – for example, if your car is over 3 years old, do not invest in a return to invoice or zero depreciation cover
- Take advantage of bundled policies, if possible. For example, check with your insurer if you would get a discount if you bundle your car insurance policy with your householder’s policy
- Don’t miss out on No Claim Bonus – you can transfer it to a new car that you may have bought or to new insurer if you choose to switch
Save money on maintenance
- Regardless of what the manual says, change your engine oil every 5,000km to extend your engine’s life
- Get your car properly tuned to save on fuel costs
- Check your car’s filter every month. You may not have to replace them frequently, but keep them as clean as possible to get better mileage
- Don’t use premium petrol, unless you must
- Make sure your tyres are properly balanced
- Check coolant brake and clutch oil regularly.
Save money when on the road
- Accelerate your vehicle gently
- Look at the traffic ahead and slow down to avoid stops
- Avoid driving either too fast or too slow
- Try to drive at a steady speed
- Avoid idling
Further, you can also save a considerable amount by participating in a carpooling system. If you and your neighbour travel to the same office every day, it would be great to carpool with him instead of each of you driving your own car every day of the week. This helps reduce your costs in two ways:
- The overall cost per trip goes down, reducing your monthly car expenses by at least 40% – if not more.
- Since the mileage on your car goes down, the life your vehicle will go up. Further, lower mileage means a lower chance of being in an accident and lower maintenance costs over the years.