To repair or to replace?
This is a common spot of bother most drivers or car owners find themselves in. Your car is a loyal servant, but it isn’t built to last forever. In fact, cars aren’t even built to last a long time. The average car will yield after hitting about 200,000 miles, which is something you can hit within a decade.
Not all cars will hit this milestone. In fact, most will start developing mechanical problems much sooner.
So, if you’re wondering whether to repair or replace, it’s clear your car is giving your sleepless nights.
In this article, we’re sharing information that will help you decide whether to send it to the mechanic or put it on sale.
The Cost of Repairs Beats the Car’s Value
This is the #1 rule to use when you’re on the fence about repairing or replacing a car. If the cost of making the repairs is higher than the car’s present market value, the smart thing to do is replace the car.
The cost of repairs needn’t exceed the market value for you to decide to sell. Even when the garage bill is greater than about 80 percent of the car’s value, replacing it makes more financial sense.
Of course, a lot will depend on whether you’re paying the bill out-of-pocket or your insurance company is footing it. If it’s out of pocket, there are no two ways about it; unless money isn’t a problem to you.
If it is insurance paying the bill, the decision on whether to repair or replace is theirs to make. In most instances, though, expect the insurer to total the damaged car.
The Age and Overall Condition of the Car
Although replacing the car if the repair bill surpasses its market value is the logical thing to do, it isn’t always the feasible option for some people.
Replacing the car means putting it on sale first. You want to use the funds from the sale of the old car to purchase a new one.
The problem? Who is going to buy a damaged vehicle that needs extensive repairs? Or, even if you can find a buyer, it will take some time.
In this case, you might decide to repair the car and squeeze a couple thousand more miles out of it. Thereafter, you can replace it without necessarily needing to sell it.
Availability of Spares
In modern times, finding spaces for a car, however rare, shouldn’t be a problem.
Got a Mazda Miata built in the 90s? You can find virtually any part on this Miata page. Got a Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita? Look around hard enough and you’ll find the part you’re looking for.
That being said, it’s possible that your car’s spare parts are currently unavailable. Do you want to let the car sit in the garage for months as you find the parts? Why do that when you can replace the car?
Repair or Replace? It Depends
Whether to repair or replace your car depends on a number of factors. If the repairs are costing more than the car’s value, or if spare parts are unavailable, replacing is the sensible option. However, if the car has intrinsic value to you and you can afford to foot the repair bill, you can repair and keep it.
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