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Grants for paying for car and automobile repairs.

Low-income individuals, people with no money, veterans and welfare recipients can get help paying for car repairs from the federal government or non-profits near them. The programs pay for new tires, tune ups, transmissions, brakes, oil changes and other needed work. There are local government agencies, such as DHS or social services that offer vouchers as well as grants or loans from charities that will pay for auto or truck repairs.

Emergency car repair programs are available as well so that someone can keep their job. People with no money or those that work for ride share or food delivery companies can also get assistance. Find how and where to get vouchers, grants, and financial assistance to pay for car repairs below.

Government car repair programs

The federal government provides grants to local charities or DHS offices, including those near you. The emergency program that they have created is known as Job Access and Reverse Commute, or JARC. There may be other car vouchers from the government or DHS issued to pay for repairs as well. All of the financial assistance is limited in scope and funding, and the programs are run charities, churches or non-profit organizations across the nation as listed below.

Only a small number of towns, cities and counties will offer car repair assistance from the federal government. When there is funding, a focus will be on assisting individuals who need transportation for work, educational, or job training reasons. This can include car repair help for single moms, the unemployed, veterans, and people on cash welfare programs such as TANF.

Gig workers and those who drive for a living, such as Taxi drivers or people who need their car or truck for Uber, Lyft, Instacart, Doordash, GrubHub or other companies can also get free grant money to pay for automobile repairs. The vouchers can also help people with no money pay for any needed repairs to their car.

However even if the applicant does not qualify for free car repairs near them or automobile vouchers using this federal government assistance program, there are also non-profits or charities (listed below) that may be able to assist with any critical auto work. There may be grants issued from local non-profits or low interest loans to pay for maintenance as well as emergency repairs to trucks or cars.




This federal government funded grant program has a goal of addressing the transportation challenges of the low income, working poor, minorities, and those who need a car or auto to get to work. There is also car repair assistance for parents with children, including single mothers or dads. The money needs to be used to pay for transportation challenges that will either help people obtain and/or keep their job/employment. In addition to providing individuals with grants or cash, JARC may also offer micro-loans that can be used to repair cars and trucks or aid for other general transportation assistance and services.

The examples of transportation assistance provided or what repairs are covered is wide ranging. All of the grant money or DHS vouchers provided by the federal government revolves around ensuring people have a safe and reliable car to get back and forth to work or training. The government grant money for fixing autos or trucks can even help people with no or poor-credit scores - provides the car is needed for a job.

For example, many entry-level jobs may be located outside of a city in a suburban area. Public transportation may not be able to access these areas. So low-income individuals who live in the inner city, urban, or rural neighborhoods can have difficulty accessing those jobs from their current homes or apartments. If their car breaks down, free vouchers, loans, or grants can help fix it, and the government can help.

Funds from the government Job Access and Reverse Commute program or other grant money may be able to assist with those expenses related to transportation. A key being the assistance provided, such as free money to pay for automobile repairs and related transportation costs, is focused on the individual becoming self-sufficient.

In addition to the distance that may be involved, many entry level-jobs (in which people have little or no money or savings) require the individual to work on weekends or late at night, when other conventional and public transit services are either non-existent or operate at reduced hours. Job Access and Reverse Commute or interest free car repair loans can help in those situations too. Many single parents (moms or dads) or gig workers often work those hours, and they many need emergency car repairs in order to keep their job so they can make a living.





Financial aid as well as grants for automobile repairs can also help low income unemployed, veterans coming back from overseas, and even the elderly who need it for medical reasons. Other examples where JARC can help is to address the fact that many employment related-trips involve a employee needing to access multiple destinations including reaching childcare facilities or other services, so a safe and reliable car would be needed in these cases. Or the government car repair vouchers can help people who work for ride share companies, such as Lyft, Doordash, Uber, Instacart or GrubHub fix their car.

The bottom line is that anything have to do with transportation, such as repairs, maintenance, new tires, engine issues, etc. may be able to be addressed from federal government vouchers, grants or the JARC program. They even offer a free tank of gas. Financial assistance to fix a car is offered to people with a full time job, individuals with poor credit or little money or to those who work at a gig or side hustle job. Or learn how to get a free gas voucher.

How to apply for a grant to repair a car near you

The government provides money to non-profit organizations around the country, and the assistance is not offered directly to individuals. Rather anyone who is interested in receiving financial assistance for their car repairs, maintenance and transportation needs will have to apply directly to a non-profit.

Emergency car repair grant assistanceThis government program has very limited funding, and only a small number of non-profits may have cash assistance from JARC to provide to low income individuals. The best place to call to see if it is offered in your local town or city is the United Way hotline at 211. Not only may they have information on government grants near you, but they also may have other suggestions to families that need their car fixed.

A community action agency near where you live may have other suggestions on where and how to get money or loans to pay for car repairs. They help low-income families, the unemployed and people with no credit or money to their name. A case manager from a community action agency may be able to tell you about other car repair or transportation assistance programs in your town or state. As there may also be grants provided by a church, Catholic Charities, local Salvation Army center, or other not-for-profit organization.

Emergency financial help to pay for car repairs, or automobile grant or loan programs, are generally offered to low income people that need transportation for work. Learn more on community action agency resources.

There may also be low cost or interest free loans available to pay for car repairs. Non-profits, such as a local credit union, may be able to offer funds to pay for emergency repair bills so that the individual can get to their job. Some local banks may also lend out money to low income households pay for a variety of transportation costs, such as critical maintenance work, repairs, new tires, and much more.




Each agency will also have their own conditions that need to be met by applicants. For example, in general, approval for the 0 percent interest loans to help fix a car  is not based on an applicant’s credit ratings. The application criteria for a grant will be very similar. Most organizations will instead look at an applicant’s budget and overall financial condition. They will then check to see if the applicant has outstanding warrants, traffic or parking tickets, or if the individual has a history of unemployment fraud.

These loan programs will often be run in partnership with the federal government Job Access and Reverse Commute Program. As some low-income families may be given both emergency car repair grants as well as loans to pay pay for the repairs to their car. Locate additional information on loans for low income families.

Social services, including DHS, may also offer grant money, vouchers or some form of emergency car repairs. Many government agencies provides this form of assistance so that families in poverty or those with little or no money can get their car, truck, or SUV fixed for work reasons. As public assistance is temporary in nature and requirements employment, so government DHS offices near you will also assist with car repairs. Find a public aid office near you.


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By Jon McNamara













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