Should I Repair Or Replace My Old Car?
If you’re a car owner, sooner or later you’ll be forced to make the choice
The decision can be difficult; there are pros and cons to both keeping and replacing your old vehicle. To help you make your decision, think of it in terms of practicality, math, and intuition. Your decision should make sense financially and personally.
If you’re wondering if you should replace or repair your car, ask yourself the following questions:
Do your repairs cost more than the car is worth?
This can be determined with some research and simple math. Calculate the value of your vehicle using online tools such as Kelley Blue Book, Black Book, or a value your trade tool, like the one we offer
. If your mechanic is quoting you for repairs that total more than what your vehicle is worth, you may want to replace the vehicle.
Will future repairs cost more than the vehicle is worth?
Like current repairs, you also need to think about what future repairs your vehicle might need. If you’re thinking you’ll need new brakes in a few months, it might be in your best interest to trade in your vehicle for a newer one.
Can you afford a monthly payment?
If your car is old enough that you no longer have a payment, determine if it makes financial sense to pick up a car payment. If your repairs only total a few hundred dollars once or twice a year, it’s going to be far less expensive to repair than to replace.
Is your current car reliable?
Your safety should be your number one priority when driving any vehicle. If you’re apprehensive about your car breaking down as you’re driving, you should replace it immediately.
How has your lifestyle changed since you last purchased a car?
Sometimes big life changes can cause our vehicles to no longer meet our needs. Maybe you’ve started a family and could use some extra space in the back seat. Perhaps you’ve moved, doubling or tripling your commute time, making your gas-guzzling pickup impractical. Whatever your lifestyle change, a new car may meet your needs better than your current vehicle.
Can you afford a down payment?
Sometimes, you can get away with minimal or no down payment—especially during special events or incentives at your dealership. However, most of the time, you’re going to have to put as much as 20% down. If you just can’t swing the down payment right now, it might make more sense to keep your car and save up until you can afford it.
What will your new insurance costs be?
Sometimes changing your vehicle can change the cost of your insurance. It’s worth looking into and calculating what your new payment would be before committing to a new vehicle.
By asking yourself the above questions, you can gain some insight into whether you should repair your current vehicle or get a new one altogether. If you need a trusted mechanic to give you an honest assessment of the cost of repairs on your vehicle, schedule a service appointment here or call 312-265-2932.