Car Safety Tips for New Parents on a Budget

When you have a family to protect, it’s important to make sure every aspect of your day is considered carefully, and that includes driving. Taking care of your car and knowing what risks are involved when driving with a child can not only help you and your loved ones stay safe, it will also give you peace of mind no matter how busy your day is. Keep in mind that if you’re on a budget, there are several inexpensive things you can do to keep things on track, from taking a second look at your car insurance to investing in a roadside assistance service.

Car Safety Tips for New Parents on a Budget

Photo via Pixabay by Tookapic

Car Safety Tips for New Parents on a Budget

One of the easiest things you can do to make safety a priority is to keep your car serviced. Proper maintenance can go a long way towards preventing expensive issues down the road. Learn how to prevent excessive wear and tear, and if it’s been a while since you last looked at the rules of the road where you live, do a little reading and make sure you’re familiar with the laws, especially where driving with a child is concerned. Seatbelt and car seat laws can change over time; if you’re unsure about whether your child’s car seat is installed correctly, you can take it to the local fire department for a free inspection.

Here are a few budget-friendly tips on car safety when you’re a new parent.

Bump up your insurance coverage

Families on a budget often rely on the least expensive option when it comes to many things, but with car insurance, it’s important to make sure you have the best policy money can buy. It may seem like an unnecessary expense now, but it could save you a lot of money in the long run. Full coverage will take care of the bill if you’re in a car accident and can even help pay for medical expenses. You may be offered a lower monthly rate depending on your age, gender, marital status, location, and whether you have a clean driving record or anti-theft device in your vehicle. Research companies in your area and ask for a free quote before deciding on a policy.

Schedule maintenance

If you bought your car from a dealership, chances are you have free or discounted maintenance on quite a few parts of the vehicle, from the brake pads to the oil changes. Even if you don’t have that option, keeping up with regular maintenance on your car will help to prevent major costs down the road. An easy way to keep track of it all is to go in for regular oil changes (you can look online for coupons from your local quick-lube shop), since they’ll check things like wear and tear on your tires and brake pads, windshield wipers, and filters, and will top off your fluids while you’re there.

Get some help in the community

If you have a new baby and aren’t sure of how to properly install the car seat, head to your local fire department. They can show you how to get the seat in the right way, which is crucial for infants. Even a small fender-bender can be devastating for a small child if the car seat isn’t attached properly. Many newer-model cars have a LATCH system for car seats, which includes metal loops attached to the frame of the car. If you have a toddler or older child who still uses a booster seat, check state guidelines to make sure you’re using it correctly.

Stay focused and use your phone safely

As a busy parent, you may find yourself pressed for time often, but it’s imperative that you don’t try to multitask while driving. Putting on makeup, looking at your phone, and eating are all things that can usually be done after you’re finished driving, so save them for later. Staying focused on the road will help to prevent accidents and will keep you and other drivers safe. Of course there are times when you need to use your phone for emergencies or GPS. If you must use your smartphone, make sure you have a holder so you can talk hands-free. Some drivers also choose to add a car wifi hotspot to their vehicle so they have access to fast and reliable connectivity.

Staying safe on a budget isn’t difficult; sometimes, it does require a bit of creative thinking, but this can be done by utilizing time management skills and planning ahead. By preparing for the road, you can give yourself peace of mind and ensure that your loved ones are well taken care of at the same time.

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Daniel Sherwin
See all posts by Daniel Sherwin