Budget for the Basic Car Maintenance
Some basic maintenance items on your vehicle should be done every 3,000 miles like a lube, oil and filter change. When budgeting automobile maintenance, you can complete the oil change yourself or ask a friend for help. Watch for oil change specials in your local newspaper. As long as your aren't driving a specialty vehicle or sports vehicle, you can budget anywhere from $25 to $45 for just a lube, oil, and filter change.
Many repair centers will include in that 3,000 mile check-up or what they call a 24-point inspection for free. This is where a service writer or mechanic will try and do what is called "up sell" you. They may tell you that some hoses are old and need to be replaced or your brakes are worn. If this happens, ask to see what they see. Do the hoses look bad to you? Ask how they can tell if the brakes are worn and ask to see them. To be safe, as long as your vehicle is performing, have all fluids, hoses, brakes, clamps, and tires repaired or replaced as outlined by your owner's manual.
Keeping up with a regular maintenance schedule will ensure the wear and tear items on your vehicle will continue to perform. Ignoring a maintenance schedule will cost you at repair time.