One way to keep your automotive costs down is by doing maintenance and simple repairs yourself. I’m not mechanically inclined but I’ve found that with the help of a repair manual I’m able to do simple repairs that save me a lot of money compared to what they would cost to have done at a repair shop. The most popular paper manuals are Chilton and Haynes. If you’re lucky you might be able to find the necessary manual at your local library. I haven’t tried the Alldata online manual but it is recommended by many. The drawback is you have to subscribe to it yearly.
Recently I changed my spark plugs and installed new front brake pads. Changing the spark plugs was very easy yet it would have cost me at least $60 to have them done at a garage. Replacing the brake pads was more difficult but since I saved about $100 doing it myself it was well worth the effort. I spent about $80 doing the two repairs. The cost would have been much less but I had to buy the manual plus some tools. My future repairs will be even cheaper. Using a repair manual and doing your own car repairs can save you some significant money.