Top 5 Money-Savings Tips for PH Car Owners
Feb 5, 2021 4:41:54 PM
Owning a car comes with a lot of benefits, including convenience and the freedom to travel. However, it’s also not a secret that it costs money to keep a vehicle in good working order. As such, many Filipinos are always on the lookout for ways on how to save on different aspects of car ownership.
Here are just a few tips that will save your wallet, electronic or otherwise, from too high car maintenance bills and other expenses:
Use the Right Tires and Inflate Them Properly
Getting your car the right kind and size of tires offers plenty of advantages. For one, you’re guaranteed to have a smoother driving experience. It also helps improve safety, providing you with better road traction and more braking capacity. The best thing about using the right tires, though? Better performance and more mileage by up to 10%.
Of course, while we’re on the subject of tires, make sure that they’re always properly inflated. Over-inflation increases the risks of blowouts, while under-inflation can damage the wheel. You also lose out on mileage when you have under-inflated tires. You can check the recommended air pressure (psi) for your car’s tires in the owner’s manual or on the side of the driver’s door.
Lastly, make sure to balance your tires every year to protect the suspension system.
Use Your Mobile Wallet to Buy Fuel
One of the biggest contributors to the total cost of car ownership anywhere in the world is fuel. A modest estimate in the Philippines is around Php 40,000 to Php 50,000 per year, which is around Php 3,500 per month. The cost can go either up or down depending on how the price of fuel moves, as well as the model and size of the vehicle. Sedans, for example, are usually more fuel-efficient than big SUVs.
The question now is how do you save on fuel, aside from not driving your car at all? One good answer is to use your mobile wallet when you gas up. Many gas stations are partners with mobile wallets like PayMaya and regularly conduct fuel promotions to encourage cashless transactions. Often, you’ll receive instant discounts when you pay via QR code. You can also join raffles where you can win fuel vouchers, cash prizes, and more.
Purchase Regular Gasoline
Sometimes, it can be tempting to buy premium gasoline due to the promise of better performance. However, the truth is that it’s not necessary if you only have a “regular” car. That’s because premium gasoline, which costs more than ordinary fuel, is formulated for cars with high-performance engines.
The bottomline is that unless the manufacturer specifically recommends high-octane fuel for your car’s make and model, you’ll do fine with just standard gasoline. The only time a “regular” car needs high-octane fuel is when the engine “knocks” due to premature ignition. In this case, gas up with premium gasoline and have your car checked.
Get a Driving App
It’s a sad fact that the Philippines has some of the worst traffic conditions in the world. This leads not just into wasted hours, but also wasted fuel—therefore, wasted money. Don’t even get started about how much worse the situation gets when it rains!
To help you out navigate the tumultuous traffic in the metro and other large cities around the country, it’s a good idea to download navigation and driving apps. These will point you to less-congested areas and help you avoid road construction sites. Some apps even let you compare fuel prices and indicate nearby gasoline stations and parking spaces.
Perform Various Maintenance Checks Regularly
It’s true that maintaining your car regularly costs quite a bit of money. However, you’ll be spending so much more if you don’t. For example, if you don’t replace the oil and oil filter after the specified mileage, you risk damaging the engine. New engine oil costs about Php 3,000 and an oil filter costs about Php 300 depending on the brand. Repairing the engine, however, can easily cost three to five times more.
Other routine car maintenance procedures that can help you save money include the following:
- Regular tune-ups to improve mileage
- Battery checks to prolong battery life
- Fluid checks, including the transmission fluid, coolant, and brake fluid to ensure optimum performance and prevent premature wear and tear to components
You should also check the engine air filter and replace it as necessary to improve mileage and overall performance. The same goes for the air conditioner or cabin filter. It’s crucial to always inspect and clean or replace it as necessary since it affects the car’s cooling capabilities. More importantly, a clean car aircon filter can help prevent health issues like allergies.
Owning a car is a privilege and also a big responsibility. Hopefully, with these tips, you can make the most of your hard-earned money without compromising safety and quality.