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One big question new car buyer’s ask is about ongoing maintenance costs.
While these costs are well known for traditional gas powered vehicles, not many people know the price of servicing hybrid and electric vehicles.
Does is cost less to maintain a hybrid car or eclectic vehicle?
How can you save money on hybrid car maintenance?
In this post, I’ll walk you through the typical costs to maintain these vehicles and then give you a handful of ways to help you reduce them, allowing you to keep more money in your pocket.
How To Save Money On Hybrid Car Maintenance
Maintenance Costs With Hybrid Cars
Before I get into the ways to save when maintaining hybrid vehicles, lets first look at the typical costs for keeping them in top operating condition.
Since hybrid cars and plug-in hybrids have both a gasoline engine and a hybrid system, you will have many of the same maintenance costs for both.
This includes regular oil changes, oil filters, cabin air filters, and belt replacements.
You will also have to replace tires too.
One area where you can experience some savings is with brake pads.
This is because hybrid cars use a regenerative braking system to help power the hybrid system.
By using this technology, you will use your brakes less, and this means less wear and tear on the brake pads and rotors.
Finally, while hybrids do have internal combustion engines, know that these rarely fail because they are used in tandem with battery power.
For example, when you come to a stop, the gas engine shuts off and the hybrid system takes over.
And speaking of batteries, I have to mention the battery packs in hybrid vehicles.
If these were to fail you are looking at a hefty replacement bill.
The average price of a new hybrid battery is roughly $7,000.
The good news is that most hybrids come with a 10 year warranty on batteries, so chances are slim you will need to pay for a replacement if you buy new.
However, if you buy used, this is a cost to consider.
At the end of the day, hybrid maintenance costs are similar to a gasoline powered car.
Maintenance Costs With Electric Vehicles
While the charges to maintain a hybrid are similar to gasoline vehicles, this is not the case with electric cars.
In many cases, electric cars require less maintenance.
The biggest reason is the lack of a gasoline engine and the related expenses that come with it.
And while there is an electric motor, it has fewer moving parts.
This means there are fewer things that could break and need repair.
But this isn’t to say there are zero costs.
An electric vehicle also has a battery system that can fail.
But as with hybrids, there are long warranties on the entire electric battery system.
Of course there will still be the typical expenses of tire replacement, air filter replacement, etc. that you will have regardless of the type of vehicle you own.
Brake pads will also need to be replaced, but this will be less frequent compared to a regular car because of regenerative braking.
6 Ways To Save Money On Hybrid Car Maintenance
Now that you know the typical expenses when it comes to keeping your electric car or hybrid in top condition, how can you lower the expenses you do face?
Here are the best ways to save money maintaining your hybrid vehicle or electric car.
#1. Learn To DIY
The best way to save cash is to learn to do repairs yourself.
In most cases, you can replace cabin air filters, windshield wipers, washer fluid, and other parts yourself with ease.
If you are unsure how to do these tasks, you can easily find YouTube videos walking you through them.
Another repair most people can learn is brake pad replacement.
Again, if you are unsure, you can find videos online.
The more things you learn to do yourself, the less money you will spend in labor.
#2. Find An Independent Mechanic
Speaking of labor expense, find an independent mechanic.
Years ago, you were forced to go to the dealer if you had a hybrid because their technicians were trained to service your car.
Now, most independent mechanics know their way around hybrids.
While you could find any mechanic, I like to find ones who work on the same make that I have.
For example, I would look for someone who fixes a lot of Toyota’s if I had a Toyota Prius Hybrid.
#3. Schedule Routine Maintenance
This one you have to look at the long run.
It will cost you upfront to get basic maintenance completed based on your cars schedule, but your vehicle will last longer if you do this.
As with anything in life, the more you follow the service schedule, the longer your vehicle will tend to last.
So even though it can be easy to skip a checkup, take it in anyways.
#4. Take Care Of Your Car
Related to the point above, you need to take care of your vehicle.
This isn’t just about what is under the hood either.
Vacuum and wipe down the interior.
Wash and wax it on a regular basis.
The more you do this, the longer it will last.
And if you decide to sell it, the more money you will typically get for it because it is in excellent condition.
#5. Drive Smarter
Another wise thing to do is be a smarter and better driver.
By not stomping on the gas pedal to accelerate or the brake pedal to slow down, you limit the wear and tear on various parts of your vehicle.
And the less aggressive driver you are, the lesser the chance you have of an accident.
#6. Do Your Homework
When you do have an expense, take the time to research the average price of the repair.
Don’t just assume the dealer or mechanic is charging you the best price.
You can easily jump online and research the prices for common services and know if you are paying the going market rate or overpaying.
Finally, when you do schedule service, see if there are any coupons or discounts you can use.
Some mechanics offer loyalty programs where you can get a percent off every time your vehicle goes in for service.
Frequently Asked Questions
Because alternative vehicles like hybrids, electric cars, and plug-in hybrid vehicles have not been widely used, car buyers and car owners have a lot of questions.
Here are the most common questions I get about maintaining your vehicle.
At the end of the day, there are a handful of ways to save money on hybrid car maintenance.
The good news is that in most cases, your expenses for keeping your hybrid in working order will not be more than a regular car.
In fact, if you are going the route of buying one of these cars, you need to make sure you get the best purchase price and know your fuel costs to ensure you will be saving money overall.