Paying extra for a 12 month MOT

If you are looking to buy a cheap used car then you may find many that only have a few months MOT left on them. These cars are often advertised with 1-3 months MOT but if buying from a garage they will often MOT the vehicle for you if you agree to buy it. If you want to get a good chunk of money knocked off the car sales price then you can agree to buy it with little or no MOT. You need to be aware that if you choose to do this you may have to fork out for repairs almost immedialty after you have purchased the vehicle. Once you have purchased the car take it straight to a garage to give it the once over. If it turns out that the car needs a lot of repairs that will cost more than the car is worth or the car is dangerous then you may be able to hand the car back and get your money back. This may not be a simple task though so you may have to go to court to fight it.

If you do buy a cheaper vehicle then it may mean that you have spare money to spend on repairs. If your budget is £1500 and you can find a car for £1000 then you can afford to spend £500 doing it up. This is better than spending your full £1500 budget on a car that still may require work to be done to it but you have no funds to spend on it.

Why are your tyres wearing unevenly?

Tyres can be a huge cost for motorists. The more miles you do the quicker you will have to change your tyres. Not only will you have to change them if they are worn but you may sustain a puncture which may be able to be repaired, but if not, will need to be replaced. Punctures can happen on new or old tyres.
Checking your tyres often for damage, air pressures and wear is vital and should be done at least once a week. Bald patches on some areas of the tyre or tyres on the same axis (fitted at the same time) wearing out at different times can signify a problem. If your tyres are wearing unevenly then you may need to take it in to a garage to have the issue investigated. Often these issues are caused by problems with the suspension. The car may not be sitting straight and therefore the weight may be not be distributed evenly.
The garage will be able to take the wheels off the vehicle and have a look at the suspension parts such as shock absorbers and struts. From here they can advise you of what needs to be changed. You will probably need to also change your tyres that have been damaged.

Fitting seat covers in your vehicle

If you have a car or van and notice that the seats are becoming a bit tatty then you may consider getting them reupholstered. This can be very costly, especially if it is leather and unless the car is worth a lot of money, it is not often a viable option for many.

Instead of forking out for costly reupholstered seats, why not look in to getting some car seat covers. Car seat covers come in a range of fit, style and material. If you have a new car and want to protect the seats then you may opt for a quick and easy cover that you can pop on and off when you need to. If the seats are already damaged then you may decide to get a cover that looks more permanent. You can buy universal covers which fit many types of vehicles, but these do not often offer the best fit and you may not find them very comfy. If you really want the seats to look like they are ew then chose a cover that has been designed to fit your specific vehicle. You will often have to pay a bit more for these but still a fraction of the cost of reupholstering.  Places such as Halfords sell seat covers but you may be able to find them online at a lower price.

Making sure you have a spare key for your vehicle

When buying a new car you often receive two keys.  If you have an older vehicle or have purchased it second hand, you may not have been given a spare and therefore you will have to ensure that you look after it well. Having just the one key that you reply on can be risky as not only can you lose it which will be extremely costly to call someone out and make a new key (not to mention time consuming) but also it may become damaged or faulty rendering it useless.

Before going to a main dealership to get a new key for your vehicle, you may be able to get one from a specialist key cutter and often save quite a bit of money. Some car keys however cannot be duplicated by these third party companies so always ensure you check first if they can create one for your make and model without just going off an advertised price on a board.

Many insurance companies are now offering key cover which will pay out if you lose or damage your key and need to get a replacement or possibly even the locks changed.  

Do you understand the ratings on your tyres?

When purchasing new tyres you will often be asked what size you need. The garage may have a system where they can look up the tyres for your vehicle but if you have had different aftermarket alloys fitted or want a different size tyre to what is standard then you will need to have this information to hand.
A tyre has three numbers such as 105/55/R15 written on the side of them. The first number indicates the width the second number indicates the profile and the third number indicates the tyres size in inches. After this you may notice another set of reading; a number followed by a letter. The number indicates the loading rating. This number is linked to a table which tells you the load that each tyre can carry. Remember this is times by four (as long as all tyres are the same) when you are working out what load the total vehicle can carry.
The final reading is the speed rating. This is shown by a letter and again is a reference to a rating on a separate table. An R rating, for example, would be a maximum speed of 106mph. It is important to not only check the size but also the other ratings on the tyre when purchasing new ones.