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Car maintenance can be hard. Most of us aren’t mechanics. When it comes down to it, if nothing is squeaking, creaking, or otherwise begging for our attention we think we are safe to ignore our cars. But, we’ve all hit that point where the sputter starts, and that little problem we were going to get to later becomes a big problem!

Just like your car, your budget needs a few checks every once in a while to keep things running smoothly. A well-organized budget can save you when life inevitably happens. Here are three basic car maintenance issues to be aware of, and how they relate to your budget.

  1. Oil Changes: This is pretty obvious. Most cars need a standard oil change, and filter change at least every 3000 miles. Changing your oil keeps your car running smoothly, and prevents buildups. Just like changing your oil, tracking expenses in your budget keeps your budget in check. Set a weekly or bi-weekly goal to assess all expenses, and get a good idea of where your budget is actually going.

  2. Power Steering Fluid: Every oil change you should be checking your power steering fluid because it keeps your whole engine lubricated, and keeps your steering in check. If it’s low, your car will feel jerky, or you’ll feel resistance. Just like your power steering fluid, you need to maintain a yearly budget to compare against your monthly budget. Your monthly budget tells you where you are right then, just like your oil change keeps you on the road. But a yearly budget helps you keep your goals for whole year, and compare them to how you’re doing monthly — so your life doesn’t feel like it’s being steered off course.

  3. Replace the Air Filter: The air filter is responsible for keeping your engine free of contaminants. Most of us know you need to change it often, usually every 12 months or 12 000 miles but it’s just so easy to forget. Until we pull it out, and it’s covered in junk. Similarly, in our budgets we need to evaluate every few months our luxury spending. It’s good to have money set aside for fun, but when we forget how much we are actually wasting on dinners out, movies, drinks, and other fun activities it may be a shock when we sit down to add it up. Consider a trade off every month. Lower your luxury item budget by adding a cheap or low cost activity into your social calendar to replace a more expensive activity. This way you still get to have fun once in a while, but you also learn cheaper ways to have fun on a budget.

Keep your car, and your budget in check by remembering these simple maintenance tricks. We know it will save you in the long run

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