Are old ideas costing you money you might not otherwise have to spend

By Product Expert | Posted in Service on Monday, August 20th, 2018 at 9:07 pm
A stock photo of a couple making an agreement with a sales person at a dealership.

Outdated car myths that are costing you money

Today’s cars, trucks and crossover SUVs are so advanced that about the only thing they share with their ancestors are four wheels and the classification of an automobile. Beyond that, technology has changed our vehicles so much that they are more akin to rolling computers than machines powered by internal combustion engines. In addition to those changes, the way we think about purchasing and maintaining our vehicles have also taken huge leaps forward. Our service and financing teams got together to write up this guide to help people save money in ways they might not have otherwise considered when dealing with their vehicles. If you have any questions that might not be covered here, please stop by the showroom and ask us. We love to help.

READ MORE: What kind of gas should I use in my Mazda vehicle?

Potentially expensive car maintenance myths

Too much, too often — Most of us are old enough to have had it drilled in our heads that we have to get our oil changed every 3,000 miles. However, most newer Mazda vehicles use synthetic oil which has the advantage of allowing for a longer interval between oil changes. Unless you run your vehicle through particularly harsh conditions, 5,000 miles seems to be the new standard. A Gorman McCracken Mazda service technician will be able to help find the best time frame for your vehicle.

Any spare tire will work — Flat tires have been a problem since tires replaced wagon wheels on vehicles. Most vehicles come with a small “space saver” tire to help drivers get to safety. Using so-called donuts when you get a flat, isn’t meant to be a permanent solution. These are only meant to be used for a short time and lower speeds.

All tire damage requires replacement — This one isn’t as cut-and-dry. A decent-sized puncture on a tire’s tread can be easily and cheaply patched with minimal loss in the lifespan of the tire. However, damage to the side-wall of the tire will likely require a replacement.

READ MORE: Mazda announced changes and upgrade for the 2019 Mazda CX-9

Car financing myths people need to understand

Low and slow is the tempo — It can be very tempting to take out a car loan that gives you five or more years to pay it off, so the monthly payment is more manageable. Financing experts almost universally agree any term over five years is a bad idea because of the increase in interest rates. Borrowers should shop around to different banks and credit unions to find the best deal to fit their unique situation.

Don’t go all-in — Just because a financial institution approves you for a loan, doesn’t mean you should take it. Financial experts suggest taking a look at the big picture of your monthly budget. Any financing should take into account being able put money into savings and to handle unexpected emergencies. A good rule of thumb is that all car-related expenses, including financing costs should never exceed more than 10 percent of your monthly gross income, says Consumer Reports.

More is better — Don’t fall into the trap of making a lower down payment when buying a vehicle. Nobody wants to shell out money they don’t have to, but when it comes to making a down payment, more is better. A larger payment upfront may sting a bit in the short term, but having lower monthly payments is a good goal to have.

This is a pretty quick and dirty guide to outdated ideas and other mistakes people make when they’re new to buying a vehicle. If you need a bit more guidance, a Gorman McCracken Mazda representative will be more than happy to find the answers for you.

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