As a general rule, your vehicle is your most expensive household item after your home of course. Vehicles represent a huge investment due to the fact that new vehicle prices are constantly rising but surprisingly maintenance costs generally stay the same.
Unfortunately, taking the car to the mechanic to have it repaired will surely drain your pockets so what can you do given the situation? You can attempt to do some of the maintenance work yourself as long as you have the right tools, you can pretty much accomplish any upkeep yourself. Contrary to popular belief you do not have to be an auto expert or even mechanically inclined.
First of all, you can replace the air-conditioning filter. If you are wondering why this is important you need to understand that the main role of the air-conditioning system is to trap the airborne contaminants such as pollen and dust. Without air circulation airborne contaminants remain present in the environment and inevitably make their way into your lungs, thus posing major health risks. The fact is that you should be replacing your air filter annually. In order to avoid a larger than necessary maintenance bill you can search online for automotive parts. But how do you replace that air filter? Firstly, you need to find the filter under the hood of the car and open the casing.
Secondly, remove the old one and replace it with the new air filter making sure it is in the exact same position.
Another easy task is that of replacing brake pads. If you hear a noise right after you apply the brakes, it often means that it is time to substitute the brake pads with new ones. It is advisable to consult a mechanic if you hear a grinding sound however for your part you can replace the pads. Once you have made sure that the vehicle has cooled down, you can move on to what is required. Using a wrench loosen the lug nuts which hold the wheels and jack the car up. After removing the wheels and the caliper bolts remove the old pads and replace them with the new ones. Consider using lubricant on the contact edges.
Finally, you have the ability to replace your fuel filter. Since fuel filters protect your engine from expensive repairs it is wise to have a new one installed. In order to avoid explosive results you must relieve the pressure of the fuel system. Once the engine is turned off disconnect the fuel lines with the help of a wrench. With one wrench hold the actual filter and turn the other counter-clockwise so that the bolts will come out. Repeat the process for the other side and remove the air filter.
The bottom line is that it does not take a Rocket Scientist to perform these mechanical tasks. All it takes are the right parts and a good DIY attitude. However, if you consider that you are out of your depth then it is probably wise to seek advice from a friend or neighbor. Together, you can do just as good a job as any mechanic.