Life’s full of surprises in Zephyrhills, Florida, some of which cost money. A leaky roof, a broken tooth, or an unexpected car repair. Bob’s Auto Repair and AutoNetTV have done some research on how we can budget for proper vehicle care.
Most Zephyrhills drivers do their best to budget for scheduled vehicle maintenance. What’s hard is unexpected repairs. The truth is that our American made cars can stay on the road longer than ever before with proper maintenance. That’s because of improved vehicle design and manufacturing quality. But some of those same improvements also lead to higher repairs costs.
Let’s take the fuel pump. Previous generations were often stranded by the side of the road by vapor lock. This occurred when the gas vaporized between the gas tank and the fuel pump. Fuel just stopped flowing. Zephyrhills drivers in this situation had to sit and wait until the car would start again. To alleviate the problem, fuel pumps are now located inside the gas tank. This is a great solution, but when the fuel pump fails, it’s a much more costly to replace it.
Sealed wheel bearing assemblies are another example. These wheel bearings can’t be serviced – you just have to replace the entire assembly when it starts to fail. That costs several times as much as service on non-sealed bearings.
So we all benefit in Zephyrhills, Florida from design improvements, but we need to plan for important repairs down the road.
There’s a tool that can be found on Edmunds.com that Zephyrhills folks can use to prepare their service and repair budget.
Let’s suppose you have a 2003 Toyota Camry – a very popular car in Zephyrhills, Florida. It’s now paid for and you’d like to keep it running for the next three years. You can go to Edmunds’ True Cost to Own calculator and enter your vehicle’s data. The calculator will provide estimates of what it’ll cost to service and repair your vehicle over the next five years. The estimate is based on where you live in or near Zephyrhills, Florida, your automobile manufacturer’s recommendations and repair experience for your particular model.
Of course these are just estimates – there’s no way to predict what’ll actually happen to the car in your driveway, but it’s a good starting point.
The calculator also has estimates for depreciation, financing, insurance, taxes and fuel costs.
Let’s focus on maintenance and repair. This table shows that the average monthly cost of maintenance and repairs is eighty-three dollars. That may sound like a lot, but compare it to a new car payment.
So if you set aside eighty-three dollars a month, you’d go a long ways towards taking care of routine maintenance and being prepared for the unexpected repairs that arise.
Of course, you can’t predict when something will go wrong or how costly it will be, but at least you have a reasonable target to shoot for.
Some Zephyrhills auto owners are afraid of what can go wrong with their older American made car so they buy a new one. That’s fine if you really want a new American made car, but if you properly maintain your older vehicle, you’ll save a lot of bucks on new car payments and Florida auto insurance. It just makes good economic sense.
Get with your technician at Bob’s Auto Repair and work out a plan for keeping your American made car on the road.
You can visit Bob’s Auto Repair at 37959 State Road 54 in Zephyrhills, Florida 33542 or just give us a call at 813-779-2277.