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Posted by: News_Desk on 04/05/2017 09:52 AM Updated by: News_Desk on 04/05/2017 09:52 AM
Expires: 01/01/2022 12:00 AM

Cash-Strapped Drivers Can’t Afford Unexpected Car Repairs

Emeryville, CA...f you don’t have an automotive emergency fund, you’re not alone. According to a new AAA survey, 64 million American drivers – or 1 in 3 motorists – would not be able to pay for an unexpected vehicle repair without going into debt.

An average repair bill can set a driver back between $500 and $600, a figure that is expected to grow as vehicles become more advanced. Complex vehicle systems are more costly to fix. Additionally, the technical skill and specialized equipment necessary to execute repairs are also more expensive.

“Newer cars come equipped with systems to make driving more safe and comfortable, but this technology also makes them more expensive to repair,” said John Moreno, spokesperson for AAA Northern California. “Many consumers struggle with costs associated with auto repair as a result of failing to set aside a car care fund to pay for the upkeep of their vehicles.”

Repair costs soar when a vehicle has been poorly maintained. A previous AAA survey found that one-third of U.S. drivers skip or delay recommended service or repairs.

“While car payments eventually end over the lifetime of a vehicle, operating costs do not,” Moreno said. “A small savings plan can go a long way in reducing the anxiety of unexpected auto repair costs.”

To avoid an unexpected car repair, AAA recommends vehicle owners follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule and identify a repair shop they trust.

If faced with an unexpected repair, AAA suggests drivers:

· Get a written estimate for the repair and clarify with the shop the work that needs to be done on the vehicle. Consider getting a second opinion to confirm the diagnosis.
·Negotiate the repair bill. Ask if the shop offers any discounts or payment plans that can reduce immediate out-of-pocket costs.

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