Something so simple yet so forgotten.
We get it, there's a lot going on in life. Simple, easy things like getting an oil change, a tune up, or even just checking the fluids and tire pressure can fall by the wayside in the wake of a big promotion or major shift at work, or having a kid. This is in no way to trivialize those events, but if you're not careful, not taking care of your car can result in a lot of money lost. For the thing that takes you to work, that you depend on to get your kids to school, that makes it so you can go on dates, it's worth paying some attention to every few months.
Taking an hour out of the day every 4,000 miles or so can prevent major problems in the future, so that $50 oil change won't morph into $500 worth of repairs. AAA released an article talking about this very thing in October of last year. It outlined a simple fact that people who don't get regular checkups on their cars end up paying a lot more. Separately, AAA released a top ten list of the most common causes of breakdowns, many of which can be prevented by simply keeping a keen eye on the car's basic maintenance. Some of them area little silly, like losing your keys, but others are more severe and can't afford to be ignored.
If you own a car that like a BMW or Mercedes, fixing broken things is going to cost more than a few pretty pennies. Let's consider the 2007 BMW 335i Sport package. One of the things on AAA's list for breakdown causes was the instance of hitting a pothole and damaging a wheel or getting a flat tire. A set of stock tires for the 2007 BMW 335i sport package will run you, on Tirerack, over $900. If you just replace two, it's still a big chunk of money. Watching out for a pothole, or keeping track of tire pressure and inspecting the car prior to departure could potentially save you $900. That's a scary number considering about 20 seconds of time is the difference.
The list also shows preventative measures you can take to ensure these things don't happen to you. Granted there are problems that arise which can't really be dealt with on the side of the road or through a simple inspection, such as a transmission falling off of the car. But wouldn't it just be terrible to break down because of something simple that could have been prevented?