Are car running costs driving you up the wall? Here are five ways that you can pay less on insurance, fuel and repair costs each month.

Shop around

It may seem obvious, but few people really take the time to shop around. When it comes to insurance, it’s always beneficial to look for new deals. Loyalty rates and no claims bonuses are generally not worth protecting – many insurers offer cheap rates for new customers and by constantly hopping from different insurers you can take advantage of these low premiums. As for repair costs, it also pays to shop around and collect lots of quotes. You may even be able to negotiate a price match by doing this. As for fuel, there are also apps that can compare gas prices in your area so that you’re always getting the cheapest deal.

Drive less aggressively

Hard braking and accelerating doesn’t just consume more fuel – it wears out parts more quickly too. Your brake pads and tires will get worn out quicker, as will many components in your engine. By adopting a more smooth driving style, you could save a lot of money on fuel and repairs. This means slowing down sooner and more gradually, as well as not trying to pull away like a racer at each junction.

Source your own parts

If you need to take a trip to the mechanics that involves replacing new parts, try to source these components yourself. Repair centres tend to make a big profit on any parts they order. Sourcing these yourself on the web could save you a lot of money. There are many sites for car parts – just make sure that when opting second-hand, you check the conditions first (contact sellers if photos and descriptions aren’t clear enough).

Pay insurance annually

There are lots of ways to save money on insurance that can vary massively depending on the driver and vehicle. However, one rule that seems to be universal is that it’s cheaper to pay insurance annually than it is monthly. In fact, in most cases an annual instalment is the equivalent of 11 monthly instalments, so you’re pretty much getting a month free. Most insurers do this because fewer people can pay in such large instalments, plus people feel tied in for a year. By saving up the money in an account you may be able to pay off these annual instalments more easily and save money in the long run.

Keep your tires well inflated

Pumping up your car’s tires costs very little and can avoid you paying much larger sums in the future. It firstly reduces tire wear, as well as keeping a good alignment preventing other parts of your car from getting worn. Driving on underinflated tires also uses up more fuel. All in all, it’s best to keep those tires pumped up whenever you can.

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