How Much to Budget for Car Maintenance?

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Setting up a maintenance budget for your vehicle is crucial to keep it healthy. When you do not properly maintain your car, you will have to empty your pocket when you take it to the repair shop in lousy condition. Additionally, nothing lasts for long if you do not take proper care.

A vehicle requires maintenance and repair after an extensive period of use. However, today’s discussion is on how much to budget for car maintenance. Here we will see how you can estimate the car maintenance budget for your vehicle.

Now let us get inside-

How Much to Budget for Car Maintenance?

Building the budget is pretty simple if you have been using a car for a while now. This budgeting will help you keep the maintenance money aside from your regular expenses. So, you will get the amount when needed.

To start the estimation, begin with all of the maintenance records for the past year. You can arrange the money receipts or pay records if you keep them. Otherwise, using your memory to make a rough estimation is the only solution.

Now add all the maintenance costs you had during the last year. This total amount will be your average yearly cost for your car maintenance. The yearly cost will lie somewhere around this estimation. So, you can stay prepared.

If you own an old car, consider adding more to your budget. Cause an old one causes more in the maintenance than a newer one. Also, if you have spent more on major maintenance services last year, you can decrease the estimated amount as some of the high costs will not be coming for a while.

Once you conclude with the budgeting, you should separate these maintenance funds from other money you will spend.

People who have purchased a new car can not follow this procedure to create a budget. But they need an estimation to stay prepared. For individuals, the average maintenance cost of a car is around 1200-2000$ each year.

So you should stay ready to spend an average of 100$ cost on car maintenance per month. Monthly car maintenance costs may vary, but the total yearly amount is a bit exact.

Prepare for What Lies Ahead

You can determine some costs beforehand. For example, you will know when it is time for an oil change or a tire replacement.

Stay prepared with the budget. Keep a regular check-up to determine the upcoming maintenance job you will require. Then make an estimated budget for auto repair.

Car Maintenance Checklist, Schedule, and Costs

You can follow a checklist method of car maintenance. Our list below covers the major maintenance job you will require with your vehicle.

We have categorized them as before and after 10,000km. So, it will give you a good idea of what to do when considering the timeline.

Maintenance before 10,000KM

You should take care of some stuff before the car reaches the travel distance of 10,000km. Here is more on vehicle maintenance costs in this timeline-

Change Oil and Oil Filter

Ìt is to suggest you replace the car oil with fresh ones and change the filter every 6000 kilometres. It will ensure a smoother ride on the vehicle.

Lubrication is necessary for eliminating friction. Sometimes, an engine can become unusable due to a lack of proper lubrication.

Without healthy oil, the engine will create more vibration in the car, which is not pleasing. As the vehicle contains many moving parts, frictions involvement is here.

A filter and oil change can cost you up to 90$, starting from 30$.

Interchange Tires

You have to make sure that the car’s tire wears off evenly. Most of the mechanics generally replace the front tires with the back ones.

Interchanging tires may cost you 25-120$. Some mechanics will do the job free of cost when you are servicing some other major issues from them.

The timeline for this is every 5000-7000 kilometres.

Car Wash

It is necessary to keep your car clean if you want to keep the metal parts away from corrosion. If the salt and dust stay for long on the car’s metal surface, it generates rust.

And once you have a rusted part, it will spread to other places. When it happens, it will be too late to get back.
So, clean the car whenever it looks dirty. If you do regular cleaning, it will definitely save you a huge amount of money in the long run.

A standard car wash will cost you around 15-25$.

You may not have the time for washing because of your busy schedule. But you can go to your nearest cleaning shop to get an instant wash. Or you can leave it there while you are working on your daily task.

Maintenance after 10,000 Kilometers

During this timeline, the maintenance is a bit more pricey. As the car gets older and older, the maintenance cost goes higher with time. Once you do some of these vehicles’ significant maintenances, the servicing price ultimately goes down again for a while.

Change Engine Air Filter

After using your car for a long time, you may find black smoke from the exhaust pipe. It means the fuel is not burning correctly.

An unhealthy air filter is often the culprit—the air filter catches all the dust and other particles inside the engine’s combustion chamber. So, an incomplete burn occurs and thus creates black smoke.

When the air filter gets old, it decreases its ability to filter out air particles—changing it after every 20,000 to 40,000 kilometres is standard.

Change the Cabin Air Filter

The scenario for this air filter is also the same as the engine air filter. As it gets old, its ability decreases.

You will be breathing inside your car cabin while driving. The importance of a cabin air filter is easily noticeable while driving a vehicle on a dusty road.

The filter makes the air breathable and safer for you. Changing this is necessary after every 20,000 to 40,000 kilometres.

The cost for changing the engine and cabin air filter is around 70-100$.

Change the Fuel Filter

As your engine requires clean air, it also needs clean fuel. The air and fuel mixture creates a charge. Then that charge is burned to generate torque and thus run the engine.

After prolonged use, there can be rust particles or other substances inside your fuel tank. If those substances get inside the engine, they will remain unburned and sometimes may cause damage to the engines inside. So, a healthy fuel stream is a must every time you start the engine.

You don’t have to replace a fuel filter frequently. But keeping a regular check by telling your mechanic is a wise decision.

The fuel filter can cost you up to 170$.

Changing the Cylinder Liner

A cylinder liner is a sort of sleeve around the inside block of your engine cylinder. It is there to protect the bare cylinder wall from cracks and corrosion. As there is a burst of fuel and continuous high velocity of engine parts, the cylinder comes into contact with immense friction.

This friction can cause small cracks and damage the cylinder liner at some point. When it happens, the engine can not run smoothly.

There are some other major causes for cylinder liner wearing off. Tell your mechanic to check the cylinder liner for any issues when you feel the engine is not performing well.

You Should Keep a Regular Check on Your Car

There are several parts involved in a vehicle. Any one of them can fail at any point in time. With a regular check-up, you can not determine the exact moment of a part fail, but you can assume that it will fail.

Car owners should keep a check-up regularly. It will help you determine any failing part before time and avoid any accident due to a faulty one. Check out the major components like brakes regularly to avoid any mishaps.


Purchasing a car is a one-time payment. But maintenance is a lifetime procedure that involves money.

Making a maintenance budget is crucial. It will help you to separate the sum from other expenses. In addition, if you are not aware of how much it will cost yearly for the maintenance, you will not be prepared for the situation. So try to have an average yearly car maintenance cost.

It was all about how much to budget for car maintenance. Keep a regular check of your car, drive safe, and stay safe on the road. We hope this will guide you through planning your next year’s maintenance budget.


Here are some of the common queries about car maintenance budgeting.

What Should My Car Maintenance Budget Be?

Your car maintenance budget should be the average car maintenance cost per year. It also can be the average vehicle maintenance cost per month.

How Much is a Car Payment Per Month?

It actually depends on the model. But the average maintenance cost for cars per month is around 100$. You will have to determine the average cost of car repairs per year to figure out the cost per month.

What is Basic Car Maintenance?

Basic car maintenance involves changing engine oil, changing tires, washing the car, cleaning the interior.

How Much Does It Cost to Maintain a Car Annually?

Again, it depends on the model of your car. But the standard annual amount is 1200-2000$ per year.

What Does a Full Tune Up Include?

A full tune-up of a car includes cleaning, fixing, and replacing the failing parts.