Growing up, my old man taught me the basics on cars. He taught me things like changing your oil, changing out tires and where to put all the fluids; but the major repairs were left up to mechanics. It really wasn’t until I was married and Mrs. B started having to pay for car maintenance that I realized mechanics charge A LOT of money for really simple things (and some not so simple things but worth a little trouble to save some money).
Last year we had a headlight go out in our Sonata, and since we were taking it to the dealership for some other work, I had them replace it. Even with my $20 coupon, I think it still cost me $20. Not knowing any better, I just assumed either the part was that expensive or it was hard to get in and replace the light bulb. In reality this is a very simple and inexpensive task. I think this is what mechanics want you to think with everything they do, after all, it’s how they make money. Well I’ve got news:
For those of you that don’t want to work on cars or are scared they will break if you touch them. I recommend this book.
I know you guys don’t all own a Hyundai Sonata, but they make these for pretty much every make and model out there (I’ve got one for my 1999 Mountaineer too).
With these books, I’ve replaced the drive axle on the passenger side of the Sonata. I took the drive belt Tensioner completely off and put it back on and will soon be replacing the water pump on the Mountaineer. These books give you step by step instructions. (Side note: I’ve always had help doing these things as most of them aren’t a one person job)
And although the things mentioned above are tough, scary things to do if you’re a car novice like myself; it also has the simple things to do as well. I’ve replaced the headlights, break lights, and worked on little things that didn’t seem “right”. From one car novice to all the B2BA readers… Get yourself a Haynes book!