Fix it up or trade it in? How to tell and what to do

If you’ve ever owned a car, you’ve probably found yourself in the following scenario:

You just got a repair bill in the thousands. Your vehicle has been showing some signs of aging. While browsing the internet, you see an ad for a brand new car for just $400 per month.

The idea of shedding that old car and all its little problems might seem attractive. A new car also probably seems pretty fun and worry-free.

However, most automotive and financial experts agree that fixing up your current vehicle is the way to go–at least in a strictly financial sense.

Buying new is expensive–very expensive

This part is just basic math. Even if your repair bill is a couple thousand dollars, that’s still far less than the cost of a new car.

New cars also come with additional costs beyond the sticker price. Taxes, fees, and all those extra charges dealers love to tack on can add up to thousands of dollars. To top it off, that’s money that’s not in the value of your car in any way.

Even a modest used car will cost a bare minimum of $2,000 for something serviceable. And even used cars come with all the expenses of buying a new car. On top of that you might end up with just as many problems as your current vehicle.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t buy another car–but just that in most cases it’s not the fiscally conservative decision.

The actual costs of repairing your car

The first step to determining whether or not it’s worth it to repair your car is to see how much it’s worth. For that, you can’t go wrong with the classic–Kelly Blue Book.

You can use KBB to see what your car is worth in its current state, and what it would be worth in better condition. Then, you can compare those numbers to the estimated repair bill.

However, these numbers only tell part of the story. The biggest consideration you should take is the cost of the repair plus near-future repairs compared to a year’s worth of car payments.

For example, let’s say a new, comparable car would cost $400 per month. This would be $4,800 over the course of a year.

If your car needs new steering and suspension equipment, you might be looking at a $2,500 bill. In that case, the cost of replacement far exceeds the cost of repair. You would be smart to just fix your current vehicle.

However, if you need something more major like, say, a new automatic transmission, you could be looking at upwards of $5,000 in repairs. In that case, you’re probably better off buying that new car.

Estimating future costs is very important

Perhaps the most important consideration to take is also the most difficult. Looking into the future a little and forecasting future repair costs will give you the best idea of whether you should fix up your vehicle or trade it in.

However, this is incredibly difficult for the average person. Even a good mechanic will have a hard time determining where future problems might emerge.

This is why it’s important to be able to trust your mechanic.

A good mechanic will not only know your vehicle, they will know the issues common to your vehicle’s year, make, and model. They will know what to anticipate as your car reaches mileage milestones, and what services to perform when.

Such a mechanic will be able to effectively estimate what costs may lie ahead.

StrutDaddy’s is here to help you decide

At StrutDaddy’s, we understand that car issues are some of the biggest financial decisions you make. That’s why we go to great lengths to provide thorough and accurate information to our customers. We do this in a number of ways.

Expert team

Our expert team of mechanics and technicians are all ASE Certified. That means they’ve demonstrated a mastery of automobile repair and technology and have been recognized by the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence.

These automobile technicians are literally certified experts at diagnosing, troubleshooting, and fixing problems.

Advanced diagnostic testing

You’ll notice that we charge for diagnostic testing–a service that some automotive shops offer for free.

We believe that you get what you pay for. By treating a diagnostic test as a service itself, we are giving it the serious attention to detail that it deserves.

While some shops may treat only the symptom of a problem, StrutDaddy’s uses state-of-the-art technology to find the root of your vehicle’s issues and prevent future troubles.

Giving you the truth

With our ASE Certified experts on hand and meticulous testing, StrutDaddy’s can provide an accurate picture of what the full costs of repairs will be. We can tell you what it will cost to get your car back on the road and what services you should perform in the coming months.

You can trust this information to give you a reliable outlook on costs. Use these numbers to make a well-considered decision about whether it’s time to break up with your current vehicle or spend some money to keep it on the road.

We are so confident in our system that we are proud to offer the StrutDaddy’s Service Guarantee. All repairs and services are guaranteed up to 36 months or 36,000 miles.

Don’t wait any longer to assess your vehicle’s value! Schedule your diagnosis and estimate service using our handy online form or by calling us at (336) 599-4911.

Written by Strut Daddy's

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