Revealed: Cutting Corners on Car Maintenance Costs Over £4.7k

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Car maintenance can feel like a chore, but without proper care you could stand to lose hundreds (even thousands!) from the value of your car when the time comes to sell. Here at Moneyshake, we analysed 210 quotes to find out which common car maintenance issues can devalue your car by £4,705.

Car maintenance costs

1. Bumper rust can devalue your car by over £1,300

Sheet metal corrosion over wheel of old white car. Rusty messy surface, rust background and damaged grunge dirty texture from road salt and reagents. Protection and painting auto in winter. Paint work

If you have a patch of rust greater than 0.5cm on your bumper, it can devalue your car by 15% on average. This is because rust isn’t just unsightly, it can also weaken the bumper which will eventually cause it to fall off the vehicle if left unchecked.

It’s hard to get rid of rust once it forms, so the tactic here should be prevention rather than cure. Salt, gravel and other residue from the road all lead to rust, so regularly clean the bumper with hot water to stop this corrosive buildup in its tracks.


2. Tyre pressure warning light on? Lose over £600


Tyre pressure may seem like an innocent enough issue because it’s so easily solved – but if you value your car while the tyre pressure warning light is on you could lose £640 on average, a whopping 7% off the value of your car. Tyres lose around a pound of air pressure every month, often more in cold weather, so keep an eye on the warning light and top up inflation regularly to avoid tyre failure.


3. Roof panel scratches over 2.5cm cost you nearly £500


If you have a habit of resting your keys and coffee on the roof of your car – this one’s for you. Did you know that a scratch over 2.5cm on a car roof panel can devalue the car by £474 on average? Accidents happen, but being careful with placing items on top of the car from keys to roof racks can prevent the paintwork from being damaged.


4. Losing your car keys devalues your car by over £300

Car key in the sand

Car keys are expensive to replace, so it stands to reason that missing keys take an average of £338 off the value of your car.

Why are car keys so expensive to replace? Nowadays, most car keys aren’t simple metal and plastic – they’re made using advanced technology unique to the mechanisms of your car. The fancier the key, the more costly to replace, so if your car keys do something special like signal blocking or contactless unlocking, keep them safe to protect your resale value.


5. Damaged/missing wheel spare? Lose £335 on average

Sheet metal corrosion over wheel of old white car. Rusty messy surface, rust background and damaged grunge dirty texture from road salt and reagents. Protection and painting auto in winter. Paint work

While there’s no legal requirement to have a spare wheel in your vehicle, wheel spares are considered an essential part of your car’s kit, so if yours is missing or damaged you could face a penalty in the form of £335 on average off the value of your car. If you use your wheel spare, make sure to return or replace it whenever you can.


6. Lose an average of £335 if your electric windows don’t work

windows controls and adjustments

Gone are the days of manual windows, so if your electric windows aren’t working it’s a significant problem that takes a big chunk out of your car’s value. Worth £335 on average, be careful when using your electric windows in cold weather. If you can hear them straining, the fuse may pop if you don’t clear the window channels from ice and snow.


7. Windscreen chips over 1cm devalue your car by £335

Cracks from the impact on the windshield of the car.

One of the most unavoidable car maintenance issues, windscreen chips are often caused by road debris such as gravel or pebbles that are thrown up by other vehicles. Windscreen chips can quickly escalate if unattended, so make sure to get any chips or cracks repaired pronto before they spread – and save yourself an average of £335 off the value of your car in the process.


8. Broken headlamp? Stand to lose £335

car headlight broken

A car headlamp doesn’t have to be smashed to be considered broken. Most often, broken headlamps are simply burnt-out bulbs that need to be replaced. It’s not safe to drive with a broken headlight, so it should always be a priority issue to be fixed on your car. If you do want to sell with a broken headlight, it’ll set the value of your car back an average of £335.


9. Dented front alloys can devalue your car by £335

Damaged disc and tire of the car

If you’ve hit a kerb or a pothole, there’s a chance that you could have dented your front alloys in the process. While these are usually minor, if the dent is over 3cm you may end up feeling the cost when it comes to selling your car. On average, a 3cm dent in your front alloys takes £335 off your car’s value.


10. Lose £275 for an illuminated oil warning light

Oil light on car dashboard

The oil warning light is more urgent than you might think. This warning light appears either when the oil level or pressure is too low, or the oil temperature gets too high.

Driving with the oil light on could cause irreparable damage to your car engine, so it stands to reason that an illuminated oil warning light will devalue your car by £275 on average – it may be a simple problem to fix, but could easily become much more serious if not attended to!




Moneyshake analysed 210 quotes on applying common car maintenance issues to the top 10 most popular car models in the UK. Figures based on average car value without any maintenance issues being £8,733. Analysis completed in August 2021.

It’s easy to see how these minor issues can add up to a huge amount off the value of your car! The good news is that they’re all easy issues to keep on top of, if you know how. Let us know when you think you’re ready to sell your car and we’ll help you find the best possible price. You can also compare car lease deals online to find the best deal for your next brand-new car.