The cost-of-living crisis is affecting nearly every aspect of daily life, even drivers struggling with car costs.
Fuel prices have calmed down after several months of endless increases, but they remain high and with household budgets strained by rising energy and food prices, drivers are trying to find ways to cut back. the costs.
Using a car less or getting rid of it altogether are the quickest ways to reduce running costs, but for many motorists that’s simply not an option, so we’ve come up with some other steps you can take to reduce the cost of driving.
Fuel is one of the biggest individual expenses for drivers and even with recent price drops, gasoline and diesel are still much more expensive than they were a year ago. Adapting your driving style and making small changes to the way you use your car can lower your fuel bill.
Most of these tips are just as valid for electric cars as they are for gasoline and diesel, and just as important as the cost of charging an electric vehicle.
Fuel prices are high right now, but even within a small area, prices can vary by several cents per liter. Check gas station costs while traveling or use an online tool like Petolprices.com to check prices near you. And don’t assume that supermarkets are the cheapest. Recent research found that independent gas stations have led the recent price cuts.
While there are many driving techniques to save fuel, one of the easiest ways is to make sure your tires are properly inflated. Over-inflated or under-inflated tires can affect economy by up to 3%, so check them regularly. Different tires can also offer different economic performance, so when it’s time to replace them, compare the eco-rating and see if a different rubber could save you money.
Car insurance, along with fuel, is among the biggest costs for drivers, but there are several ways to save money.
Like insurance, it’s cheaper to pay car tax all at once than in installments. The DVLA charges a 5% premium for paying by direct debit monthly and paying in semi-annual installments is also more expensive, so if you have the funds, pay 12 months’ taxes at once.
The annual ITV checks the roadworthiness of your car and can detect problems that you are not aware of. However, many of the most common ITV faults are problems that can be detected and repaired at home much cheaper than trusting your mechanic.
Before you bring your car in for testing, check all the lights, the windshield washer fluid level, the condition of the wiper blades, and the tire tread depth. Buying new bulbs, blades and fluids from a motor factor and fitting them yourself will be cheaper than paying your shop to do it. Being able to shop for new tires early also means you’re more likely to find a better deal.
If you want something almost new, dealers often sell low-mileage ex-demo models after just a few months with significant reductions in new price. If that’s still too expensive, the second-hand market has options for just about any budget – just follow our advice before you hand over money to buy a used car.
As with fuel and insurance, it pays to shop around for the cheapest parking. Online tools and apps like Parkopedia can help you compare prices at different parking lots near your destination, making it easy to save money. Alternatively, use a park-and-ride service or sign up for one of the online road-sharing services like YourParkingSpace or JustPark, where owners rent out parking spaces, often for much less than official car parks. This works both ways and you could make money renting your own driveway while you are at work.
Motorists have been warned about a little-known mistake that can lead to “staggering” fuel costs as fuel consumption increases. Despite the drop in recent weeks, gasoline and diesel prices are still quite high compared to a year ago. With that in mind, motorists across the country have been urged to check their car’s engine oil...
In recent weeks, the council’s Commercial Standards service has received several complaints from people about second-hand cars they have bought. Although buyers would like to blame the dealer if something goes wrong, they are not always to blame, so Trading Standards has provided some helpful guidance to ensure residents don’t get caught buying a second-hand...