25 Car Repairs You Can Do Yourself to Save Money | Penney Auto Body & Glass Vancouver

25 Car Repairs You Can Do Yourself to Save Money | Penney Auto Body & Glass Vancouver

You don’t need to be an expert or knowledgeable about cars to repair them. We’re here to show you some fixes you can do yourself with simple tools and next to zero experience. As a plus, you'll be able to save money and time by doing basic troubleshooting and repairs yourself.

Keep your car in tip-top shape by following these 25 DIY car repairs.


1. Air filter replacement. Clogged air filters lower car performances. Change your car’s air filter to increase power and gas mileage. An air filter replacement is one of the easiest DIY car repairs to do for worn out filters.

2. Oil change. Oil change is relatively easy to do yourself with certain restrictions. Avoid changing oil immediately after driving your car since it can be very hot. Wait at least a couple of hours after driving to change the oil. Tools for a DIY oil change are ratchet, oil filter, wrench, funnel, new oil, oil container, and oil filter.

3. Spark plugs. This simple DIY procedure can make your car have better fuel consumption ratings and drive smoother. Spark plugs for most cars are cheap. Check the plug wires while replacing spark plugs too.

4. Windshield wipers. Replace any worn out strips of rubber found on old wipers with new ones. Change windshield wipers for optimal driving conditions during rain. Basic tools are needed like a screwdriver and new wipers to change them.

5. Headlight bulbs. Check the front of your car for burnt headlight bulbs in need of replacement. DIY headlight bulb change is possible for cars without sealed beam headlights. Be sure to get the right bulb for your car and save money by changing it yourself.

6. Dangling exhaust pipes. If you hear extra car noises from the back of your car, it could be damaged pipe holders or structure. Most cars use rubber loops to hold exhaust pipes that can get damaged over time. Look under your vehicle for any broken hangers in the exhaust pipe and change accordingly.

7. Brake pads. Always keep brake pads in optimal conditions to avoid car accidents and injury. Brake pads are a key component of the brake system that should be properly maintained. Usual tools to change brake pads are a c-clamp, lug wrench, Allen wrenches, hammer, and jack, amongst other.

8. Fuel filters. Fuel filters have an average price tag of $15 depending on the car model, but you can save hundreds of dollars from engine damage if changed regularly. Fuel filters are important to keep fuel injection and carburetor systems clean and working properly. Do note that it is imperative to release the fuel system pressure before replacing the fuel filter to avoid damage or injury.

9. Car radiator flush. A car’s cooling systems and radiators should be cleaned to keep engines cool. Radiators can build deposits that clog the cooling system. Perform regular radiator flushes to keep the cooling system in optimal condition. Before removing the radiator cap, to flush the radiator, check that the engine is first cool.

10. ABS sensors. ABS sensors can cause the ABS light to show on cars’ dashboards if dirty. Clean ABS sensors while replacing brake pads to save on time, if possible.

11. Plug tires. Car experts differ on whether it is better to patch or plug a tire. However, only use these options for short-term solutions for tire damage if not done by a professional. Tire plugs can be bought for as little as $5 to repair most tires according to the damage.

12. Fuel gauge sender. If you are running low on fuel on a constant basis, the fuel tank gauge might need replacing. Many cars have these units located under the seat based on the manufacturer. Review the owner’s manual to verify the location of the fuel gauge unit, and if accessible, change accordingly.

13. Brake discs. Combine changing warped brake discs with brake pad replacement to save time if needed. Warped brake discs can damage entire car axles if not corrected in time.

14. Removing stripped screws. If you have damaged a screw’s head, steps must be taken to remove it correctly. Drills are suggested to remove stripped screws with diameters to drill a hole in the screw’s head center. Once the screw’s head separates from the body, it should be easy to remove.

15. Blown fuses. If your headlights are out, it could be from a blown fuse. Check the car’s fuse box to determine which fuse needs replacing. There are three main types of car fuses, which are glass tube, blade, or ceramic. Review your car owner’s manual to find the location of fuse boxes and type of fuse required.

16. Car signal relays. Turn signals are easy to troubleshoot if signal relays are at fault. Bad turn signal relays can make turn signals stop blinking. Check the signal relay setup of your car for turn signal issues.

17. Car batteries. Batteries are the center of a car’s electrical mechanism. Use approved gloves and eye protection to avoid acid damage from the battery. Check the old battery with a voltmeter to see if it has the proper charge. Batteries with lower than 9.7 volts while starting an engine, should be replaced.

18. Seat belts and seatbelt retractors. Seat belts, by law, must be used to protect against injury in a car accident. Seat belts and belt retractors can be replaced with screwdrivers by simply removing the covers and placing new ones. You should test the new seat belt for the best working conditions.

19. Window belt strips. Visually inspect the window belt strips for missing parts, cracking, or other damages for replacement. Worn out window belt strips can cause water damage if not kept in top shape.

20. Tire valve stems. Tires and wheel assemblies must be removed to change tire valve stems. Deflate tires by removing the inside valve stem. Install the new tire valve and inflate tire accordingly.

21. Serpentine belts. Check under your car’s hood or the engine compartment for the serpentine belt routing layout. Once you located the belt, loosen it to remove the serpentine belt. Make sure to install the new belt in the same manner that the old one was routed. After installing the new belt, check the belt’s tension and adjust if necessary.

22. Tire replacement. Tire change is one of the most common DIY procedures performed by car owners. Damaged tires can be replaced with the spare tire by using the jack and tire changing tools available from most car manufacturers. A professional can balance the new tires later.

23. Thermostats. Radiator thermostats provide your car's engine with recommended temperature levels. The radiator must be checked for leaks and the coolant should be drained to release pressure.

24. Radiator hoses. Radiator hoses are key to maintaining coolant system pressures and engine temperatures. Worn out radiator hoses can have leaks that drain coolant levels and heat up car engines. Check for the upper and lower radiator hoses for damage and replace as necessary. Radiator hoses are usually just held by clamps and screws depending on the type of car.

25. Washer tanks. Washer tanks are necessary to clean dirty windshields while on the road. Open your car’s hood and locate the washer tank. Remove the washer pump’s wiring to the washer tank before removing. Washer tanks are usually just held by a couple of bolts based on manufacturer. After replacement, fill the washer tank with washer fluid and test for proper function.

Regular car maintenance and repairs can help keep you out of mechanic shops. This DIY car repair list will assist you in maintaining your vehicle in maximum shape without spending a lot of money. Remember, if you're not comfortable fixing parts yourself, get professional help. Follow safety procedures at all times while doing DIY car repairs.

Penney Auto Body & Glass, Vancouver’s Auto Body Collision Repair Shop, is an expert in paint and body repair and cares about the welfare of your car and your personal safety. If you get involved in an automotive accident or you're a victim of a vehicle break-in or theft be sure to contact Penney Auto Body for your auto body, collision repair, and car painting services.



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