The car needs work. The garage charges more than you can afford. The work doesn’t sound like much. The garage only needs an hour to complete the job. If you had the right tools and a comprehensive car maintenance guide, you’re sure you could do the work yourself. The weekend is free. Your neighbor volunteered to help. How do you make your decision?
Should You Do the Work Yourself?
First things first, check with your local parts store or go on line to a reputable provider like Lisle Tools to get your hands on a good, comprehensive car maintenance guide for your year, make, and model car. Don’t assume the job will be an easy one until you have read the steps required to complete the work start to finish.
Next, check the tools you’ll need. Do you have everything? Can you rent them or will you need to buy them? Don’t try to use substitutes, the job will be twice as hard or you may break something else in the process.
Third, are all the parts available and at what price?
Now that you know the real cost, time, and difficulty of tackling the job yourself, you can make a more informed decision as to whether the DIY route is the way to go. If so, gather your guide, tools, and parts together and make sure you have everything before you start. There is nothing more frustrating than being in the middle of the job and finding yourself back at the store looking for a part that might not be in stock. Don’t forget the car maintenance guide. You may have done this job a hundred times, but if this one time, something goes wrong, you’ll be glad you have it.
Benefits of DIY Car Maintenance
Why would you take on the job of car maintenance in the first place with all the technology resident in cars today? Isn’t it easier to take your car to the garage? Certainly, but there are several advantages to the DIY route, at least for simple maintenance.
- You become more familiar with your car
- You gain the satisfaction of completing something outside your comfort zone
- You gain confidence that you can fix simple things should they break on the open road
- You are less likely to be “taken in” by unscrupulous mechanics
- You save money in most cases
Today’s cars are certainly not as simple as granddad’s Model-T, but that should not deter you from knowing as much as you can about the operation of your car and handling the simple maintenance tasks associated with it. Get a good comprehensive guide, do your homework, take your time, and have fun.