Why You Need an Emergency Fund Reason #1: Blown Tire

Brent Pittman —  06/09/2013
photo (13)

A blown tire doesn’t have to blow your budget

We all need an emergency fund just in case something unexpected happens. Trust me, the unexpected will happen.

If you don’t have the funds saved up for a rainy day, you’ll be getting wet.

I’ll be starting a list of reasons why you need an emergency fund.

If you have ideas please send them to my Twitter @ontargetcoach

Why You Need an Emergency Fund Reason #1: Blown Tire

As I was driving to work recently on my morning commute, I felt my tire blow.

I kinda expected to have some sort of car trouble on our 97 Civic with 179K miles on it, especially since I’ve been putting 120 miles on a day.

Now, I’m an urban kinda guy, so I’ve never changed a tire by myself–Never.

I could have called AAA, but it would have taken them 30 minutes to get there and then I would have to be embarrassed to ask some other dude to change my tire and put on the spare.

This is Oklahoma after all where people still grow their own food and raise cows. You won’t hear an Okie saying they can’t do something.

Don’t say ‘can’t’ in the earshot of an Oklahoman–they’ll just angry at you for not figuring out how to MacGyver a way to do it.

I digress.

How to make a tire iron

My Blow Tire

I had a full sized spare [TIP: When you buy a new set of tires, keep the best of the old set and use it for your spare tire], so I didn’t have to worry.

After locating the cheap little jack and tools, I finally figured out a way to make the jack go up. It was difficult and I didn’t have room to turn the jack’s mechanism in a circle.

When I was done I figured out the two pieces went together to form a T in which I could jack the car up.

You knew how to do that already huh? Yeah, my first time-dumb.

After an hour the job was complete and spare tire on. I felt like a stud.

I changed a tire without help looking up how to do it on YouTube. I was a man. I was all grown up.

A State trooper slid up behind me.

“Shows over”, I said.

He saw my black covered hands and brought me an industrial wipe to clean my hands.

Emergency Funds and Car Repairs

Cars break. Especially if you drive them like a chuck wagon on a long journey across hard terrain.

My car crisis, could have turned into a budget crisis and caused much stress in our lives and marriage.

But I can buy a new tire, since I have an emergency fund. In fact, we even have a fund saved up for car repairs for when they happen.

Keep saving and drive safe.

Wagons Ho!

Do you save for car repairs or have a plan for when your car breaks? 

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Brent Pittman

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Brent is a financial coach and writer looking for the perfect donut. He believes personal finance should be both fun and accessible to anyone willing to learn.
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  • I have a car repair fund, but it is also a part of my vehicle build fund since I love working on cars. Glad to hear that you figured out how to change the flat. I surprises me that more people don’t know how to do it, but then again, neither does my wife and she won’t let me teach her.

  • Emergency funds are a Godsend. I have used mine 4 times in the past, and I have been incredibly thankful for them every time! They make a stressful situation much less stressful!

    • You only have to rely on it once, to know you need it again right?

  • Jules@knsfinancial.com

    Great job changing the tire! It always seems the car takes up our emergency fund, but this morning, someone is coming to fix my dryer.

  • Tie the Money Knot

    Yep, it’s vital to have an emergency fund. Things can and do happen, it’s just a matter of what it will be and when it occurs.
    I actually had a tire give out on a car that had nearly 200k miles, while I was on a very busy road. In that instance, I have to admit that I had no problem calling AAA and letting some other guy do it. After all, I was paying for it, and why risk safety for a little pride?

    • I guess I was in Oklahoman can do spirit that morning.

  • AvgJoeMoney

    Car repairs can ruin your day! Glad it didn’t also ruin your long term plans. My car is old, too, but luckily, I work from home. 60 miles each way to work! Audiobooks?

    • Too bad I don’t have time to go to the library, our small town library closes before I come back from work.

  • Money Beagle

    Good work. We have a fund for emergency or high cost maintenence for our cars. I try to keep it funded with at least $1,000 but it’s usually around $500. Now that our cars are older, I’d actually like to continue to bump this up.

  • John S @ Frugal Rules

    Like Matt said, nice job handling it on your own. I would’ve been tempted to call AAA myself. 😉 We do have a small fund for car repairs. Thankfully our two cars are newer so we never really have to use it much. We may end up using a chunk of it towards buying our next car a few years from now.

  • Nice job handling it on your own! You definitely one-upped me there, haha! And I like the tip about saving an old tire as a spare. Definitely something I’ll remember.

    • Funancials

      I’m having deja vu…didn’t Matt (above) just get a flat tire, too?