A recent survey found that 63% of Americans take their vehicle for maintenance more often than they take themselves to the dentist. Despite this impressive dedication, so many of us still aren’t as diligent in keeping records in a car maintenance log.
Just like with an owner’s manual, too many drivers put their maintenance log in the glove compartment and never look at it again.
As part of our mission to help all drivers make the best choices, we’re here to tell you it’s a good idea to maintain a vehicle maintenance log. Let’s take a look at the top reasons you should stay on top of your records, so you don’t miss out on some profound benefits.
1. You Stay Organized and Save on Unnecessary Maintenance
Those with super–reliable cars may think maintenance logs are only useful to owners of older vehicles, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. A record of the maintenance carried out on your car keeps you organized at a very basic level, so you always know what work has been done and when it’s next due.
Imagine you take your car in for an oil change, but you can’t remember when you last had your tires rotated. You may be tempted to have it done just in case, potentially wasting time and money in the process.
With an up-to-date maintenance log, there’s no need for any guesswork, so you only pay for the services your car needs. You’d be surprised how quickly those saved dollars mount up.
2. Maintenance Logs Make Warranty Claims a Breeze
Whether your car is still under factory warranty or you’ve purchased an extended service contract, regular maintenance – and logging that maintenance – can be essential to a successful claim.
Many warranty providers will void your coverage if you don’t regularly maintain your vehicle, as this kind of neglect often leads to premature part failure. With a comprehensive maintenance log at your side, you can easily prove that you’ve had work carried out like clockwork so that any claims will go through smoothly.
Remember that the right extended warranty coverage can save you thousands, so you want to do everything you can to stay on top of your maintenance schedule. You can find out more about extended car warranties in our introductory guide.
Your maintenance log is also the best place to keep physical copies of receipts for any purchased parts (e.g., tires) that your protection policy may not cover but has their manufacturer warranty. If they break before their time, and you need proof of purchase to get a fresh one, all you have to do is open up your log, and there it is.
3. You Get a Clear Picture of the True Cost of Ownership
Owning a vehicle can be costly, but you’ll never know just how much you’re spending unless you keep track of it. Your maintenance log is perfect for this, giving you the space to write down exactly what work has been carried out and the price you paid for it.
We aren’t just suggesting this so you can see how much money you’d have if you walked to work – it’s a useful budgeting tool. Once you know what repairs are coming up, you can keep money aside for them well in advance. It can also help you when it comes to purchasing an extended warranty too. As you understand how much you’re likely to spend on upkeep, you can figure out which protection plans will save you the most money.
4. It Maximizes the Value of Your Vehicle for Resale
If you decide to sell your vehicle, you’re going to want to do so for as high a price as possible. Having a comprehensive car maintenance log maximizes the value of your car for a few different reasons.
Firstly, by showing potential buyers you’ve consistently stuck to a maintenance regime, you’re assuring them your car is a good investment. Especially if there are lots of miles on the clock, a well-maintained vehicle is bound to be in far better condition than one that hasn’t been taken care of – and it will be worth more money as a result.
Secondly, you have solid proof that a buyer is getting what they pay for. If they can look through your car’s maintenance log and see every filter change and part replacement, they can understand what’s been looked at recently and what might need to look soon. It’s this kind of information that can make or break a deal, and you’ll have it in the palm of your hand.
A Simple Way to Get the Most Out of Your Vehicle
Even if you’ve never considered it before, it’s never too late to start updating your car’s maintenance log, and we’d certainly recommend it. Whether you regularly carry out work yourself or have a go-to repair shop, writing down what completed service and when has some significant upsides.
Wherever you might have hidden yours, dig it out, grab a pen, and start keeping track of things today. Your future self will thank you for it.
The AAA: https://www.aaa.com/autorepair/articles/how-often-do-cars-need-service
Ride Time Blog: https://www.ridetime.ca/blog/the-top-4-benefits-of-keeping-your-own-car-maintenance-log/
South Dade Toyota: https://www.southdadetoyota.com/vehicle-maintenance-records-need-keep/