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Readers, welcome back to Jiffy Lube Ontario’s second article in our series Jiffy Shop Talk, where we share automobile knowledge with you: the person who is an expert in their particular passion, but may not know everything about auto ownership and maintenance. But never fear, Jiffy Lube does more than just oil changes, and we’re here to help. With a few articles like these under your belt, you’ll save money, sound auto-savvy, and be a better vehicle owner.

This article’s focus: Insurance Rates!

Insurance costs represent the highest consistent expenditure for your vehicle by a significant margin, which is why this article is so valuable to new and experienced vehicle owners alike. If you drive in Ontario, you pay the highest car insurance rates in the country! Most people know that the more accidents you are involved in, the higher your rates, so we’ll skip that part and give you a few lesser-known tips. So, let’s waste no time and discuss some ways you can reduce those costs – and save more money for your next big road trip!

Taking a Driving Course

Completing a driver’s training course and submitting it to your insurance provider can help you reduce the premium you pay to drive your vehicle as it shows – on paper – that you are a capable driver. Not only that, but it will probably make you a better driver (we know, we know, you’re probably a great driver already) and reduce the amount of vehicle accidents you’re a part of, which in turn reduces your rates by comparison. Most driving test centres have hours that accommodate full-time workers, so you can complete the course quickly and avoid missing work (and you don’t have to tell anyone around the water cooler if you don’t want to)!

Annual Payments vs Monthly

Switching your payment method from monthly to a single annual payment may make you feel the sting of an insurance payment more since it’s all at once, but it’ll most likely save you money. Annual payments are typically priced lower than an entire year’s worth of monthly payments, meaning if you can squirrel away some cash for the single payment, you’ll pay less!

Winter Tires

Most insurance companies will give you a discount if you switch your vehicle’s tires in the winter. Auto-insurers know that winter tires cause less accidents on the slippery winter roads, and may reward those who make the switch. Take a picture of the tires and show your tire swap receipt to your insurance provider and your premium could drop by up to 10% a month. Need help with the tire switch? Check out our tire switch service page.

Increase Your Deductible – Decrease Your Premium

By increasing the amount you must pay toward a claim, you lower your monthly insurance bills. This tip may seem like common knowledge, but few people take advantage of it. Why you may ask? Well for one, increasing your deductible feels like a silly thing to do. Why pay more if you get into an accident? Wouldn’t that just add to the aggravation? Well…yes. But, if you have strong saving skills, and are able to keep an emergency fund untouched – say $1000 – increasing your deductible is a smart way to go. Insurers bank on the fact that most Canadians live in debt, and cannot afford to contribute to the payment of their insurance claim. But if you have the willpower to keep a few dollars saved for your deductible, you will save a significant amount of money in the long run.

As you can see, these tips rely on you being a little more responsible with your driving, preventative maintenance, vehicle care, and spending habits – which is never a bad thing!

Insurers want to minimize risk, so the more careful of a driver you are, and the more financial risk you assume (i.e. paying annually and increasing your deductible), the less money they will feel compelled to charge you – meaning you can keep your coin for things that matter to you, and brag about how safe of a liability you are to all your friends!

Do you have any car care tips that’d you’d like to share? Tweet us about it at @JiffyLubeON with the hashtag #JiffyShopTalk