At what point do you replace your car?
Are you an every few years person?
Drive it into the ground?
At what point in the car dead?
I used to replace them only when about the only place that would take them was the junkyard or it wouldn't pass inspection, and when allowed to have my way I'm usually not far from that now factoring safety in only because my kids are in it some times. My wife is of the mindset to "trade in while you can"
Just wondering where others sit on this topic.
It depends on how deep your pockets are or how great your FICO score is.
The wagon went when the cost to maintain it was more expensive than the cost of car payments on a replacement vehicle. That and I knew I could still get something for it on trade in.
Man, the death spiral of that car sucked it was so damn costly!!!!!
I'm sitting on this fence right now with my SUV. We have an '05 Mitsubishi Outlander that now needs more money in repairs (Gas tank, windshield, power window regulator, flex/intermediate pipe, little bit of rust) than what it is worth.
It also depends on how much / what you use the vehicle for and how well you treat it.
We currently have two vehicles. My SUV gets used very little (short work commute) and I don't ask much from it. So even though it is 12 years old and needs a LOT of little things, the motor is currently sound and it should pass inspection and is owned free and clear.
My wife on the other hand treats her vehicle a little rougher and it tends to burn through clutches and brakes more frequently. It's a little cheaper to keep her in a newer (leased) vehicle that stays under warranty and swap out when the lease is up. I hate the thought of having a car payment constantly, but the lease is a cheaper payment than buying, keeps her out of the repair shop and she can get a new vehicle every 3-4 years.
I agree with CJ keep it until it is not worth fixing it.
I will never buy new again. Do some research on average repair costs of what you are looking for then shop around to find the best deal for a longterm ride.
As I said before, I Always bought older high mileage cars for what ever I could afford in cash, drove them til they weren't worth fixed and junked them, My wife is of the mindset that you buy used cars on payments and drive them until they go to the shop more than once and trade it in for something else.
I did end up in a car that I had payments on because of an unexpected blown motor in my last car. Wife started giving me a hard time because of some rust and a couple $200-$300 trips to the shop. It's only 7 years old and will be paid off in 2 and I think it's got 4-5 years of life left in it depending on how quick that rust spreads.
I've found a car I'm going to look at that will basically extend the exact same payments I am making now out another 3 years but put me in a 1 year old car.
Really with two outlooks so different just in my household I was curious what other peoples takes on it are.
It is all about the piece of mind factor.
If you are in a position where it is IMPRACTICAL for you to be without a vehicle for costly repairs it's probably worth the payments for your piece of mind.
I try to buy rigs that are gently used and at the end of their generation. For instance, I own a 2011 Nissan frontier... because it is almost identical to the 05 model. I also owned a 2k4 Nissan frontier... because that generation was 6 years old. I like to buy rigs that have the majority of the little things corrected and if they have known items (like shotty motors and bum transmissions) I can avoid them all together.
I travel A LOT for work. I CANNOT be in a position where my vehicle is down. It is simply impractical for me to buy older, higher mileage used rigs.
Thanks guys. The big kicker with mine is the cost to replace/repair the gas tank. I'm looking at around $1500-2000.
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