You shouldn’t be afraid to fix minor problems with your car yourself. Even if you only have the smallest amount of mechanical inclinations or experience, many of the most common repairs your car will need are easier than you think. There are many reasons why someone would want or need to go to a mechanic or dealership. Going to a professional mechanic is recommended for any major repairs. However, if you are even a little bit handy, and you want to save some money and have a say in what kinds of parts you use, there are hundreds of small to medium sized jobs you can do at home.
Simple things like changing your windshield wiper blades, to slightly more complex ones like swapping out front brake pads and rotors can be done in your own driveway. You should absolutely make sure you have the right tools for the job, and you should also leave yourself enough time to do the job right. With the right tools and the time, anyone can become an armchair mechanic. You don’t need to be an experienced gearhead to perform simple repairs or routine maintenance on your auto. There are thousands of videos on the internet that can help when the repair manual doesn’t offer enough insight. And most importantly, there are online auto parts stores connecting car owners to elusive parts that used to only be accessible through mechanics.
If you’re planning to take on an auto repair project, consider buying the necessary parts online. You can buy nearly any part for any car on the internet. From front or rear brake pads and rotors to whole engine blocks, online auto parts stores are a gold mine for people who are into DIY auto repairs. When you decide to take on a repair job yourself, your first stop is likely to be the neighborhood auto parts store. The problem with retail auto shops is the lack of variety. There is a good chance they won’t have the part you need in the store. While you can pick up things like motor oil or fuses at the brick-and-mortar shop, you’re still stuck waiting while they get the part delivered.
This is why online auto parts suppliers are the way to go. If you know what is wrong with your car or know it’s time for routine maintenance, you can order the part ahead of time. This saves you time and money by cutting out the middleman at the parts counter. It also gives you more choice about what kind of part you want to get. Think you can save a few bucks by getting a secondhand part? Want to make a greener choice by choosing eco-friendly rear brake pads and rotors? When you buy parts online, you’re in control.
Of course, don’t get in over your head with a big job right out of the gate. Start small, learn over time and when it gets too hard, go to the pros. However, small jobs like oil changes, brake pads and rotors and tire rotation don’t need a mechanics professional expertise. Mechanics charge for their time and they’ll charge you for the part. Many will also go with a more expensive part when there could be a cheaper option because they value quality and are committed to giving you the best service. This is great for big jobs or replacements that are expected to last for years, however for routine maintenance, why not save yourself some cash and learn a new skill?
Something like replacing your front brake pads and rotors can be done inexpensively and safely with the help of a good online tutorial or maybe an experienced friend. Even if you do end up calling on a professional mechanic, you can see if they are willing to put a part on that you supply through an online store. The fact of the matter is, the pros use essentially the same service. Better parts suppliers will have either free or inexpensive shipping. The orders arrive quickly too, in most instances between two to five days. This may be even faster than when your mechanic can get the part from their wholesaler.
Your car already has all the information you need. All you need is the make, model, and the part serial number. Armed with this information, you can find any part online. Online auto parts retailers sell many of the same parts that mechanics source from wholesalers. These parts are just as reliable as any of the others on the market. The reason the prices are so competitive is because they are cutting out the retail middlemen. The next time something goes wrong with your ride, compare the prices online before you commit to your mechanic.
If you find yourself putting more and more time and money in repairing your vehicle, the following may help you decide when the repairs stop being worthwhile.
Infographic provided by Indiana Public Auto Auction – your place to buy cars at auction online