Do Americans Procrastinate?
Auto Repair Search Trends
Published on 12/27/2016
Most everyone thinks they are keeping their vehicle running well and properly maintained. But are they really? Are we all getting regular oil changes and swapping out soiled engine air filters as promptly as we should be?
To answer these questions, carinorder.com took a look at Google search trends for common vehicle maintenance and repairs. The results showed surprising patterns, which give insight into the American auto owner.
Do or Dawdle?
|Figure 1: Twelve years of U.S. search query data for three vehicle maintenance items|
Look at the pattern of these search queries! Every year there is a steep decline, followed by a valley (low point) during a certain time period. When do these valleys occur? Smack dab in the winter months, for northern latitudes.
This data implies that if we don’t act on auto maintenance/repair issues during the summer months, we are inclined to wait until warmer times in the future. Sorry folks but that means we are all prone to procrastination when it comes to auto repairs!
The important question is: Does it matter that we avoid taking care of our cars at certain times of the year? The answer, of course, is that it depends. Putting off an air filter change for a small period of time is fine, but waiting to fix your car when a more serious problem is occurring can cost you dearly.
If your vehicle shows any of the following serious symptoms, don’t wait until next summer to see a mechanic:
The trends indicate we search more for auto maintenance/repairs in the summer months. That in itself is fine. But during the winter, don’t just turn up the radio, ignore that check engine light, or convince yourself that the car sounds “better” today. Take it to a qualified mechanic before the issue snowballs and you are writing a sizable check.
How timely are you with auto repairs? We are running an informal poll on Facebook, so stop by and vote to let us know how you see it.
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