This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
TheStreet Open House

10 Ways You're Killing Your Car

Stocks in this article: NOTE

PORTLAND, Ore. (TheStreet) -- If your "check engine" light could talk, it would hurl obscenities at you for ignoring it when it's only trying to help you out.

Your "check engine" light is your car's means of sitting you down for an intervention. It's trying to tell you that something's wrong and that you need to take action before it gets worse. Stop being afraid, suck it up and seek some help now before things get out of hand.

But you're not going to do that, are you? You're just going to hope that little LED bulb burns itself out so you can go about your business. Because how bad could it really be? You'd hear something, right? Then you could search "car banging noise" on YouTube and watch an instructional video on how to fix it yourself. You don't need a certified mechanic or an automaker's warning light telling you what to do. You're an independent, capable human being who just needs to get through this last commute and clear off some time on the weekend schedule for repairs.

Yeah, this is how car repairs increased for the second year in a row. According to car repair data site CarMD, repairs increased 6.7% overall last year, including a 13% uptick in labor costs and 3% increase in parts costs. In the Northeast and Midwest, where hardy folk who brave the cold regularly should know better, plummeting temperatures brought a 9% increase in average car repair costs last year.

CarMD just released its Vehicle Health Index and looked at what some of the most common "check engine" light repairs were in 2013. The sad fact is that most expensive common repairs could have been prevented by simple, inexpensive, routine maintenance. But since everybody's an expert, here are the problems that all of you self-certified mechanics failed to diagnose within the past year:

1 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protégé, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 17,678.70 +6.10 0.03%
S&P 500 2,057.09 +5.27 0.26%
NASDAQ 4,771.7630 +13.8840 0.29%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs