Author Topic: WWYD: Fix car or replace it?  (Read 1833 times)

samburger

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WWYD: Fix car or replace it?
« on: June 26, 2015, 08:58:34 AM »
My 14-year-old Saturn needs about $1,500 $1,300 in repairs (rear coils and struts are shot, plus it has a big ol' hole in the muffler, and it needs 2 new tires). I'm leaning toward doing the repairs, but I'm curious what you would do in my situation.

I put less than 5,000 miles/year on the car driving it almost exclusively to and from work. It gets good gas mileage (35?). I'm not sure how many miles it has because the odometer blew several years ago--200k, maybe? It needed one $1,000 engine repair about 5 years ago, but otherwise all maintenance has been routine. If I replace the car, I'd probably spend $7k or so for a used Honda Fit or a Scion xD.

The big question mark is, if I fix it, how long will the car will hold out before it needs another pricey repair? I'll be delighted if I can get another three years out of it, which isn't asking too terribly much when I drive it so little. But it is 14 years old, and our winters are tough on cars.

What would you do? Do you fix it and risk sinking $1500 into a car that could demand another expensive repair in a year? Or give up the dream of driving your shitty Saturn forever and throw away $7k for a sturdier car?
« Last Edit: June 26, 2015, 09:36:46 AM by samburger »

SuperSecretName

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Re: WWYD: Fix car or replace it?
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2015, 09:24:32 AM »
tires don't count.  that is a regular maintenance item.

samburger

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Re: WWYD: Fix car or replace it?
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2015, 09:35:04 AM »
tires don't count.  that is a regular maintenance item.

Oh, that's right. Good catch. That brings the repairs down to about $1300.

Blal

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Re: WWYD: Fix car or replace it?
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2015, 10:01:21 AM »
Registered just to say this. Struts and coils are typically not a difficult repair and you can do it for under $200. Take the effort and do it yourself. Even if it takes a whole day, remind yourself you're basically being paid $50+ an hour to do it yourself. You can even rent the coil tool at no cost at most auto shops (down payment, you get it back when you return the tool). Just make sure to observe all precautions on the tool, those coils are under quite a bit of pressure.

JLee

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Re: WWYD: Fix car or replace it?
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2015, 10:09:09 AM »
Monroe Quick-Struts are pre-assembled strut/coil and they're $99.79/ea on RockAuto. So, $200 (minus 5% discount, codes are everywhere) plus shipping. If all you need is a muffler, you should be able to find an exhaust shop that'll do it for ~$100 (maybe less). $1300 is absurd.