The Mental Health Benefits of Working On Your Own Car

Most people focus on the money that they will save when they think about working on their own car. The benefits of working on your own car far surpass the money that you can save. There are many benefits of working on your own car.

Many people do not take advantage of the benefit of DIY car care, because they are afraid. What are they afraid of? They are afraid they will make matters worse. The fact is anyone can enjoy the benefits of working on your own car. Learn how you can get started managing the needs of your vehicles.

The Argument is Sound for DIY Car Repairs

If you do the math you would be absolutely amazed how much money you are dumping into regular maintenance for your vehicle. Regular oil changes alone can cost you a few hundred dollars a year. You can buy the supplies and do it yourself at a fraction of the cost.

Oil changes, managing fluids, changing your windshield wipers and other mundane but necessary tasks are easy to learn how to manage, and it can result in tremendous savings. Again, while the savings is great, there are other benefits of working on your own car including:

  • Knowing exactly what is going into your vehicle.
  • Being able to afford higher quality parts.
  • Enjoying the satisfaction of knowing that you did it yourself.

Whether you have a used car or a newer car, doing the work yourself can be very rewarding on many levels. When you take charge of managing your vehicle needs, you have the added bonus of knowing exactly what is going into your vehicle.

While there is nothing wrong with taking your vehicle to a mechanic, there is always that little nagging feeling that maybe they are not being 100% honest about the needed repairs. You can avoid that feeling by doing the work yourself.

Maintenance is one of the most important things you can do for your car. Keeping up with regular service and maintenance is easy when you can do it yourself. Many people find that they really enjoy tinkering with their vehicle, they use it as a therapy session to help cut down on stress.

There is a high level of satisfaction when you can manage what your vehicle needs without having to worry about making time to run it to the mechanics. Spending a Saturday morning managing your vehicles is a lot easier than trying to find someone to pick you up from the local shop and drive you back home, then take you back again to pick the vehicle up. The fact is, going to the mechanic is far less convenient than doing it yourself.

Are you convinced yet that the benefits of working on your own car are worth a shot? You should be. Let’s take a look at what it will take for you to start enjoying the benefits of working on your own car.

Mental Health Benefits and Car Repair

Study after study shows that having a hobby is a good stress reliever and good for your mental health. Car repair can easily become your hobby, but it is not just the hobby status part that is good for your mental health when it comes to the benefits of working on your own car.

Sure car repair is a valid hobby, but it also is a great stress reducer. Some experts believe that stress is caused by a feeling of helplessness. Taking control of your vehicle maintenance and repair puts you right in the driver seat and helps you to feel in control, thereby reducing stress.

It is estimated that about 77% of the cars on the road right now are in need of maintenance. While worrying about vehicle maintenance may not be high on your worry list, it is somewhere on that list of worries. It is nagging at you and causing more stress. Taking control of the situation gets you ahead of the worry.

You cannot control everything in life by you sure can control car care by doing it yourself. You will be amazed at how good it feels to know that your vehicle is reliable, and safe, because you take care of it. Being able to keep your car in good condition is something that will deliver peace of mind.

Most people rely heavily on their vehicles. A broken down vehicle is a major stressor that can impact your ability to work and to meet other family obligations. Knowing that you are taking every step possible to keep your car in good condition is a great way to build self-esteem. Yes, it is a hobby, but it is a very purposeful hobby, and something that will help you to reduce stress, and have peace of mind.

Garage Therapy

One of the biggest obstacles that people mention when it comes to working on their own car, is the lack of a garage, a too small garage, or an ill-equipped garage. The fact is there are work arounds for this that can make it possible for anyone to enjoy the psychological benefits of working on your own car.

If you have the money consider building an Amish prefab garage. It is a simple solution that will give you the space that you need, and of course, will also add value to your home. Of course, that is not the only option for having a designated space to enjoy working on your vehicle.

You do not need an indoor space for working on your car. If you have a carport invest in some bright outdoor lighting to light the space up and allow you to work on your car in the evenings after work. The Nirvana that you can reach by chilling out in any designated space and working on your vehicle is well worth “making any space work”.

Still not sold on the idea that if you are motivated you can find the space you need? Have you considered a space for lease in a parking garage? If you live in an apartment complex, this can be a great solution. Even if you do not live in an apartment complex it can still be a great solution, especially if your therapy involves visions of car restoration projects.

In other words, if you are motivated enough, you will find the space and make it work. Putting in the extra work of creating a space to work on your vehicle will guarantee that you will be able to tap into all the benefits of working on your own car, and those benefits can be profound.

You Got the Space Now What?

Once you have your space ready, all you have to do to reach car DIY nirvana is start practicing. How do you practice? You work on your car. There are plenty of tutorials online that will take you through the step by step process for every single repair or service your vehicle could need.

One of the key benefits of working on your own car, is that it gives you an opportunity to expand your knowledge base about vehicles. There is nothing better than feeling good about how you are spending your time.

Start off with the simple stuff first to build your confidence. For example, learn how to change your own oil, consider replacing the hoses, or doing a tune up. The more things you do that you are successful in the more your confidence will build. Before you know it you will be able to shut out the world, work on your vehicle and manage every repair.

Investing in some comfort items can help you to fully enjoy managing the care for your vehicle, for example, fans, or garage door screens can help to keep the air flowing in the summer months. A portable heater can make it easy to feel comfortable in the winter months.

Awareness practices can help you to mentally prepare to work on your vehicle. A little pre-game meditation can go a long way in helping you focus on the task at hand, and silence all the stress that can get in the way of working on your vehicle.

I Don’t Have the Right Tools

Are concerns about tool investment keeping you from tapping into the benefits of working on your own car? While you will need to invest in some tools, you do not have to go all out and by an engine hoist or outfit your garage with a lift, but you will need to invest in some basics. Don’t let it stress you out, you can find affordable tools.

What you need to focus on initially is the basics like a good metric socket set, a wrench set, and the tools that you will need for a specific repair project. For example, you want to do some bodywork, investing in scrap metal cutting shears would be a wise move.

In most cases, if you need a specialty tool for a specific repair, you will be able to rent it from your local auto parts store for just a few dollars. Don’t let worrying about spending money on tolls keep you from enjoying the benefits of working on your own car. It will all work out.

You can borrow tools from friends and family, rent them, or start building your tool arsenal little by little, so the process can be more affordable. You have options available. Most repairs and maintenance activities do not require special tools.

You will find that investing in the tools you need are just as important for your mental health and reducing stress as paying to go to the gym. Once you get in the groove of repairing and providing maintenance for your vehicles, it will be something that you look forward to doing. You will begin to equate car repair and maintenance with “me time”. Invest in the minimal tools that you will need, then worry about the rest down the road.

Leave Some Stuff Up to the Pros Initially

There are some things you should leave up to the pros at least in the early stages of your journey. For safety sake, if you are in a car accident, even if the damage seems minor you want to get a pro to look at the undercarriage to ensure that the frame is not compromised. Other situations where a professional is a good option is:

  • Major bodywork. If you need major bodywork, you may want to leave that up to the pros simply because they have the equipment to manage the problem.
  • Resetting your assisted driving technology. Leaving this up to the pros falls under the heading of “they have the very expensive equipment to manage it you don’t”. Typically if you have your tires changed or have an alignment it can throw off your driver-assisted technology and it will need to be recalibrated.
  • Any warranty work. If your vehicle is still under warranty take to the dealer for warranty repairs. It is just smarter to let the pros manage any warranty work, and besides, it is free. You do not want to void your warranty by attempting the repairs yourself. Car manufacturers love to play the blame game when their vehicles malfunction, don’t give them the chance to point>

To get the most benefits of working on your own car you need to look for the balance, especially if you are trying to use DIY car maintenance and repair as therapy. You do not want to find yourself in a position where working on your car causing you more stress and anxiety. Sometimes getting a nod from a mechanic that you are in the right direction is all that you need to feel that peace you are after.

The fact is the more time you spend working on your vehicle the better you will become at working on your vehicle. In the early stages, you will likely need more professional input than after a year or two. At some point, you will become so good at working on cars that you will rarely if ever bring your car to the professional.

Start enjoying the benefits of working on your own car today, and watch how it transforms your mental health, and bank account.

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