J&M Transmission and Auto Services in Tea SD has a motto: We fix everything. We can align your breaks, change your oil, replace your alternator, anything a car can need, we will do it. The only thing we don’t do is fill out your taxes and pay off your student loans, but that’s about it.
But if there is anything we have learned about our customers over the years, it is that they like saving money. More than that though, they like doing things themselves as often as they can. One of the great things about cars is that so much of it can be done yourself, though to varying degrees of effectiveness.
This is usually called “preventative maintenance”. It is not about fixing your car, it is about doing what you can to keep your car from needing to be fixed. So, in order to save you money and give you some independence, J&M has put together this handy list of some preventative maintenance methods you can employ.
This is the easiest thing you can do with the highest return. Tire pressure can be managed at any gas station with a tire pump. Most cars will have the desired tire pressure of a tire printed on either or both the tire itself or the inside of the driver’s side door.
More importantly though, most gas station air machines will have sensors that tell you what your tire pressure is at. This means you can regularly check and refill your tire’s air. The return on this investment is that it will keep your wheels from getting destroyed. A monthly refill on your tire’s air can save you hundreds of dollars.
The benefit of changing out your air filter is always larger than you think it is. Conversely, the cost of not doing it is commensurately large. The thing is, air filters keep the air going into your engine pure. The engine needs air in order to combust. So, the cleaner the air, the more efficient the engine.
A dirty air filter will usually result in a 10% loss in fuel efficiency. Imagine that you could get a free tank of gas every tenth tank of gas. That is what a clean air filter can give you.
Using the Right Oil
This is probably the sneakiest expense that finds its way into your automotive budget, even though it is on the smaller side of things. Your car’s owner’s manual probably designates exactly what kind of oil is best to use in the car. The thing is, many mechanics will use whatever oil they want, with no regard to this advice.
You can get a little more efficiency out of your car (and make the oil change last longer) just by using the directed type of oil. So many people miss this simple optimization, and it costs them nearly a hundred extra dollars a year.
These are just a few of the ways to keep small problems from becoming big ones. J&M will gladly tell you more if you just call 605-777-7736. We are always here and willing to help.