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Old 04-09-2012, 02:24 PM
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Default How do you decide...

...when it's not worth it to keep fixing your car?

I drive a 2000 Mitsubishi eclipse. I love it. It's fun to drive, the hatchback gives me tons of space to haul stuff, it's cute, etc. But I just got a quote (from my mechanic that I love and trust and is very reasonable) for nearly $800 worth of work.

At what point do I decide "not worth it", and go buy a new car? This is the first car I've ever had--I bought it used for $6000 in college, and have driven it for almost 6 years now.

I have the cash saved up for a new (used) car if I need it, but it's tough to swallow. The price range of cars I'm looking at is $12-15k, which is an awful lot of money when my car only has 93k miles on it...
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:30 PM
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I was in a similar position to you and I ended up upgrading to a new car because my mechanic told me it was down hill from here out that the repairs where not just a one time thing and it would then be good.

And this weekend I just upgraded again only because the other car did not work for my lifestyle at all.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:38 PM
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I was always told that when the cost of maintaining a car outpaces what you would spend on a new one that's when you should upgrade. Is the $800 a one time thing - like after this you should have no more repairs for awhile? Or is this going to be an ongoing thing with this car?
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:48 PM
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When the fix is more than the vehicle is worth it's time to get a new vehicle. I'm in the same boat right now. I have an '01 Grand Cherokee that I love. It's perfect for the dogs, sports and any other thing I can think of. There's a few things on it that need to be fixed, but I think the fix is worth more than the Jeep itself. We're going to get a new Jeep instead of putting more money into the old one.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taqroy View Post
Is the $800 a one time thing - like after this you should have no more repairs for awhile? Or is this going to be an ongoing thing with this car?
This is the question I would ask. Is it just $800 and the car will last you a few more years without anymore big expenses (other than normal maintenance) Or in 6 months is it likely you will be needing more work?
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taqroy View Post
I was always told that when the cost of maintaining a car outpaces what you would spend on a new one that's when you should upgrade. Is the $800 a one time thing - like after this you should have no more repairs for awhile? Or is this going to be an ongoing thing with this car?
I don't know--I mean, it will fix the problems that need fixed (parts are rusted/cracked, so replacing them solves the problem entirely). Living in a cold climate sucks, because you drive over the gross salt and crap they throw on the roads in the winter and it accelerates deterioration of the metal pieces.

I guess that's a good question for the mechanic.

Regardless, I'm doing the $800 fix now, because I'm not prepared to buy a car in the next few days and my car won't pass inspection without the fixes. I guess that may be my summer project though--car shopping.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoe08 View Post
This is the question I would ask. Is it just $800 and the car will last you a few more years without anymore big expenses (other than normal maintenance) Or in 6 months is it likely you will be needing more work?
It's 13 years old now...my guess is that parts just start to wear out. We replaced the clutch in November, but that was the first big fix I've had since I bought it.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:31 PM
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I just spent almost $800 fixing up my '96 Jeep last month (alternator, radiator, and windshield). Other than when stuff blows up it's in great condition with about 193k miles on it. I've probably put more money into the jeep over the last two years than what I paid for it, but then again I don't have monthly payments.

I think it really depends on what the condition of the car would be afterwards.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MericoX View Post
I just spent almost $800 fixing up my '96 Jeep last month (alternator, radiator, and windshield). Other than when stuff blows up it's in great condition with about 193k miles on it. I've probably put more money into the jeep over the last two years than what I paid for it, but then again I don't have monthly payments.

I think it really depends on what the condition of the car would be afterwards.
Yeah...I mean, I guess even if I spent $800 every 6 months, that's still wayyy cheaper than car payments would be.

I looked it up on kbb and it says the value is only $2k. Which isn't bad, I guess. I have driven it for 6 years and it's only lost $4k of value.
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Old 04-09-2012, 04:24 PM
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I am so very thankful my hubs works on cars. Seriously 600 for a radiator , alternator and windshield? WOW , if he wasn't we would so be screwed.

My answer was going to be after 300,000 miles , but with those prices to fix little things maybe a car payment with a warranty is a better option.

The last 3 or so vehicles we owned all have went at least over the 300,00 mark . They where retired cabs though with police packages . The trucks we have now are both under 200,000 and 94's . Thanksfully the previous owners took excelent care of them and we should be able to hand them down to the boys in 10 or so years.
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