A rattle. A clang. A screech. A puff of black smoke.
It happens to us all. Your trusty car has persevered but something has finally bitten the dust. It could be big, it could be small, but either way, you need to get it checked out.
There is no doubt that over the course of your life behind the wheel, there will be several occasions that you’ll need to have repairs done to your car. Here we’ll go through the top 10 most common car repairs.
Although they will be pricey to deal with, knowing what to look out for can help prevent further damage, which will ultimately rack up an even heftier mechanics fee!
1. Fuel Injectors
The fuel injectors are like syringes that make sure the right amount of fuel is shot into the internal combustion engines.
When it starts to fall into disrepair, it can lead to fuel leakage and dirty fuel entering the injector, resulting in a puff of black exhaust smoke!
Whilst you may only have 1 faulty injector, it is recommended that you just get the whole lot replaced when you go in for repairs. This shoots the price right up to just over $1,000-$1,500. Ouch.
The injectors do eventually wear out, but you can prolong their life by making sure your gas tank is full so water can’t seep in, change your fuel filter when required, and make sure you use good quality fuel.
2. Cylinder Head Gasket
This keeps the combustion chambers, oil and cooling systems sealed off from each other. When it starts to wear down, engine oil and coolant are in danger of mixing, severely damaging your engine.
You’ll know it’s about to burn out when your ‘Check Engine’ warning light illuminates, the engine is rattling, or the engine temperature reading is particularly high.
This fix will set you back $900 to $1,300, and it will most likely not be the last time you have to do it! It’s estimated that you’ll need a new one around 5 times in your lifetime.
3. Timing Belt
The timing belt keeps the rotation of the crankshaft and camshaft synchronised, ensuring the engine’s valves open and close at the right times.
This commonly wears out because it’s in constant use. If it splits, it can damage the valves and pistons, wrecking your engine.
You’ll hear a harsh grinding or an awful screeching noise from the engine bay if your car is affected.
Since a broken timing belt can wreak havoc on surrounding elements, it’s best to replace it when your mechanic advises so, even if it’s not broken yet.
Depending on the make and model of your car, this can put you back anywhere between $400 to $1,000 for the belt, plus more if there is additional damage to be dealt with.
When your clutch goes, you’ll have difficulty changing gears and no power can be transferred from the engine to the wheels.
The clutch, on average, will need to be replaced around 10 times, costing roughly $500 to $600 a pop.
You can try and prevent your clutch from deteriorating as quickly by using it as little as possible, opting to put your car into neutral and use the handbrake instead when you’re at a standstill.
The flywheel helps facilitate power transfer between the engine and transmission and also provides a means to start the engine.
Oftentimes, when you need your clutch replaced, you’ll need to replace the flywheel too.
If your clutch is faulty, it may be causing damage to the flywheel, and if you leave the original flywheel in place, it may cause damage to the new clutch – a vicious cycle!
The flywheel is pretty pricey, coming in at just under $1,000 on average.
Look after your clutch and you’ll look after your flywheel, avoiding extra repair costs!
6. Battery Replacement
If your car won’t start, then it may very well mean that you battery is dud!
Car batteries can range from $50 to to $400 depending on where it’s from, the make, model, and the guarantee.
Unfortunately, you may end up shelling this out a staggering 13 times.
The turbo is an induction device that boosts the efficiency and impact on an engine’s internal combustion system, pushing compressed air into the combustion chamber.
Temperature and time is crucial for maintaining a healthy turbo. After revving your engine, let it cool by idling for a while, and don’t force it to go all fire blazes when it hasn’t yet warmed up properly yet.
When the turbo falls into disrepair, your vehicle will lose power because the turbo can’t adjust to pressure changes in the engine.
A new turbo may cost you almost $800.
High-pitched noises, grinding, or squeaking are all characteristic of brakes that need replaced or repaired. You may also find your brakes cause your car to lean to one side or the resistance in the pedal is reduced.
It could be caused by a number of things, like leaking fluid, overheating, or worn down brake pads causing metal to grind against metal.
The average cost of replacing brakes is $250 but can be well into the thousands for some brands.
9. Catalytic Convertor
The catalytic convertor converts harmful gases like carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide and water. It contains precious metals like gold and palladium which facilitate the process.
When it stops working efficiently, you may find that your car is suffering from low fuel economy and the engine is performing poorly.
A new one can cost anywhere between $250 to $1,000 depending on the make and model of your car.
10. Fuel Filter
If your engine is feeling a bit rough, you’re using far more fuel than you should be, or your car is struggling to start, you may need to get your fuel filter check out.
This is one of the most common repairs you’ll need carried out. You may have to get it done 25 times!
It doesn’t cost too much per repair for a new fuel filter. Prices on average are around $90.
About the Author
Tom Butcher is a freelance writer, covering a wide range of topics, including finance, business and motoring. At the moment, he is helping LeaseFetcher tell the world about car leasing.