Author Topic: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?  (Read 3387 times)

gillstone

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 388
  • Age: 37
  • Location: The best state in the Union (MT)
Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« on: September 02, 2015, 09:11:44 AM »
Since I've stopped driving to work I've stopped needing my 2nd car and a few months where it was only driven to make room to chipseal the street has DW convinced as well.  But now I'm running in to a problem, the car really sucks and needs repairs so now I'm balancing out repair vs resale.

Here's what I have:
2000 Pontiac Grand Prix 2D Coupe with 3.8L v6 in overall fair condition.  However it needs:

A new intake manifold gasket (for Pontiac that's about $900 since you have to practically disassemble the engine to replace it)
http://www.pontiacproblems.com/trends/cracked-intake-manifold/

A new starter (mechanic quotes $450 for them and its about $100 DIY (I have no car repair skills whatsoever, nor a place to do it besides my driveway))

At fair condition it retails at about $1600. If I did all the repairs I could bring it up to "Good" condition which retails at $1900. 

I'm not in a big city so selling for parts or scrap will likely have its own overhead of getting the vehicle to the yard.

Do I do the repairs or sell it as junk or something in between?




Cadman

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 368
  • Location: Midwest
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2015, 09:18:22 AM »
How many miles on that 3800? Does the car need anything else? Brakes? Suspension?

gillstone

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 388
  • Age: 37
  • Location: The best state in the Union (MT)
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2015, 10:27:32 AM »
127k mileage, needs new tires and a new clear coat.  CD player doesn't work and rear speakers are shot, and tint on rear window is bubbling. 

On the plus side the transmission is in good condition, the brakes are fine and the rest of it is OK given age and mileage.

MsPeacock

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1550
  • Location: High COL
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2015, 10:31:44 AM »
It sounds like the repairs exceed the value or the car, and exceed the value after repairs.

Are you planning to keep the car if you repair it, replace it w/ another car after you sell it (in whatever condition), or be carless?

gillstone

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 388
  • Age: 37
  • Location: The best state in the Union (MT)
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2015, 11:27:24 AM »
The plan was to sell it and be a 1 car family.  We have discussed trading in our other car for a minivan and could theoretically drop the Pontiac in that deal, but that could be years away. 

If all else fails my wife's grandfather has a hill devoted to the derelict cars of the family so we could always drain the fluids and leave it there until another scrap dealer swings by.  In the meantime, he can use it to store old batteries since he scrapped that car or as a tool box since the school bus he's using as a tool shed is filling up.

Koreth

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 43
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2015, 11:48:24 AM »
Do you have any favors you can call in from mechanically-inclined friends or family? Some people enjoy working on cars and will happily spend a weekend afternoon wrenching on a car in exchange for a beer or some other favor. Having someone to help you can cut down the amount of time, scraped knuckles and cussing it takes to do the work.

You also might try sourcing parts from the junkyard; you could likely pick up the parts you need for cheaper than what they'd cost you at the auto parts store. Plus, the act of pulling them from the donor car at the junkyard will familiarize you with the work needed to remove/replace the part, making it easier the second time around when you go to install the part on your car. Not everything can or should be sourced from the junkyard, obviously. One-time-use and consumable bits like filters and gaskets should be bought new, but the durable bits like the manifold, stereo head unit and speakers are candidates for junkyard sourcing.

NoraLenderbee

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1255
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2015, 04:35:18 PM »
Have you checked Craigslist in your area? If it's got some activity, you can sell it as a parts or project car. Wouldn't make much, but you'd get rid of it. Or even put it on the "free" section.

Thegoblinchief

  • Guest
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #7 on: September 02, 2015, 05:36:17 PM »
I'd try selling it "as-is" on CL for a month or two, lowering the price/obo from $700, lowering a $100 every week until it's $0. At that point if no one locally has bitten, parking it with the grandfather might still be worth a little $ but I'm not familiar with how scrap markets work away from a city.

Cadman

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 368
  • Location: Midwest
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #8 on: September 02, 2015, 06:57:39 PM »
That's a tough call. If you're handy and have the tools, or know a mechanic buddy, this is an easy job and the corrected gasket kit will take that engine to 300k. Take your time, use the proper tools, and it's doable in your driveway. But if you have to pay full price for labor, or don't have the time, then it's probably better to walk away.

The trans is likely the biggest draw if you put it up on CL...unfortunately scrap prices on entire vehicles right now are at an all time low. Worth even less if it has to be towed. Ouch.

Edit: a little googling will reveal kits and instructions if you want to get a feel for it
« Last Edit: September 02, 2015, 07:00:46 PM by Cadman »

gillstone

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 388
  • Age: 37
  • Location: The best state in the Union (MT)
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2015, 08:12:52 AM »
I claim a limited victory! I sold it to a gearhead for $1000.  I started out assuming I would get no more than about $1200 (fair condition was a generous description) and that was before the starter crapped out so I'll take what I can get. 

Bonus - I don't have to pay to insure it anymore either so that another $150/yr in my pocket

Cadman

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 368
  • Location: Midwest
Re: Selling POS car - are repairs worth it?
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2015, 11:00:02 AM »
Congrats! I think you made out like a bandit... ; )