The average car is now 11 years old and that means more maintenance over the life of your vehicle. According to Car MD, repair costs were up 10% last year.
The experts at Edmunds.com recommend you check your tire pressure once a month and inflate if necessary. This will improve your gas mileage, the overall life of your tires and ensure your car can respond efficiently in an emergency.
You can extend the life of your engine and get more miles out of every tank by changing your air filter every year or 12,000 miles.
Whatever you do, don't ignore the "check engine" light. Car MD experts said that light could simply be telling you to check your gas cap, or it could be more serious. If your oxygen sensor is faulty, ignoring it could add up to an additional $900 a year in gas.
Bad spark plugs or ignition coils will also eat into gas mileage and could damage your catalytic converter. The cost to replace a catalytic converter could easily top $1,000.
If you want to save a trip to the mechanic and diagnosis a problem yourself, there are a number of engine light code readers available for purchase online.
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