Like many people, I've had some horrible experiences with cars. When I was 22 and knew everything, I insisted on buying a brand new red Plymouth Horizon. There was nothing my parents, or anyone else, could say to change my mind.

That vehicle altered the trajectory of my life, financially and emotionally, to this very day. It was the worst piece of junk ever created and all the signs were there from the moment the over-anxious salesman delivered it to me at my home; lights didn't work, doors wouldn't open, the ceiling of the car had sawdust all over it, among other things. But I cared not.

To make a long story just a bit shorter, that car was in for repairs almost every month of its life and once stranded me in the middle-of-nowhere in Wyoming for 10 days. Before I unloaded that monster onto some poor unsuspecting family with two toddlers, (not really, the dad loved Plymouth Horizons for insane reasons and yes, I told him about the car's history), the car had been completely re-wired electrically, had gone through four alternators in four years, and had a new computer installed!

None of these repairs were ever covered by warranty and none ever improved its performance. But unbelievably I was improved by surviving it. When I was rid of it, I educated myself about cars, car repairs, car sales and the places that sell them. I became a kind of car savant and even gave car buying seminars for friends.

I  helped my 22-year-old nephew purchase a vehicle a little over a year ago. I first had to convince him that I knew what I was doing and that took a bit of effort, but once I did, he relented and was grateful. Now if I could just warn him about the rest of life.

With all this in mind, I came across a great article on Cracked.com about car care myths that cost you money. I'll admit that I still do one of these, which is warm up my vehicle on particularly cold mornings. But I don't do it for the maintenance aspect, only  because I like a warm drive to work.

Here are 6 car care myths that could be costing you money:

  1. Change your oil every 3,000 miles
  2. Warm up your engine before you drive
  3. Fuel additives are good for your engine
  4. Get regular tuneups
  5. You need to winterize your car
  6. High-octane gas is better for your engine

To get all the details on why these are myths, click here.