Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

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mister_sparkle
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Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby mister_sparkle » Tue Feb 07, 2017 9:06 pm

I have a 2005 Mini Cooper with 87K miles on it that is starting to show its age in certain ways. Mostly minor things, such as the rear windshield wiper rotting out and falling off, the latch that opens the hood no longer working, extremely rusted out wheel/axel parts I noticed while using a replacement tire. Bigger and more expensive repairs are no doubt right around the corner. And this model year Mini is somewhat notorious for a failed transmission design (CVT) that is a culprit in early failures for many Mini drivers (but not me yet).

I only drive about 5000 miles a year, so I've been thinking of trading my car in and getting a used car with 30-40K miles on it, knowing that I could likely drive it another 10 years without much worry. I could probably drive this car for another 5+ years but I am leery about the increasing nature of these minor headaches, and the transmission failure potential.

When do you make the decision to ditch your car and trade up? At what point do you think it's not worth it?

123
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby 123 » Tue Feb 07, 2017 9:43 pm

I would get rid of a car when there is a significant safety issue.
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czr
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby czr » Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:08 am

There is really no hard and fast rule to get rid of a car. Sometimes it's not only a financial decision because peace of mind also has it's worth. Driving a car down to the ground versus upgrading every so often is a personal preference. It seems like you want to get rid of it now and get a better one which is fine as long as you have the money to do so.

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White Coat Investor
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby White Coat Investor » Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:12 am

mister_sparkle wrote:I have a 2005 Mini Cooper with 87K miles on it that is starting to show its age in certain ways. Mostly minor things, such as the rear windshield wiper rotting out and falling off, the latch that opens the hood no longer working, extremely rusted out wheel/axel parts I noticed while using a replacement tire. Bigger and more expensive repairs are no doubt right around the corner. And this model year Mini is somewhat notorious for a failed transmission design (CVT) that is a culprit in early failures for many Mini drivers (but not me yet).

I only drive about 5000 miles a year, so I've been thinking of trading my car in and getting a used car with 30-40K miles on it, knowing that I could likely drive it another 10 years without much worry. I could probably drive this car for another 5+ years but I am leery about the increasing nature of these minor headaches, and the transmission failure potential.

When do you make the decision to ditch your car and trade up? At what point do you think it's not worth it?


When the repair costs more than the car is worth.

Why not make some repairs if stuff is bothering you. A windshield wiper and latch shouldn't cost that much. Have the mechanic look at the axle and repair if it is a safety issue.

I have BOUGHT cars with more miles than yours has. I wouldn't sell it just because it is older and has a few miles on it and has some little irritating things.
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby cheesepep » Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:14 am

For me, anything more than ten years old or if I'm tired with it.

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Frugal Al
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Frugal Al » Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:36 am

While I'm generally inclined to agree with the Doc, I have to make an exception in this case. Although these cars are great fun, they were not good or reliable cars when new and, unlike a fine wine, they don't get better with age. Unless you turn your own wrenches, this vehicle will probably be a money pit. That's not saying there isn't a lot of fun left in the car FOR THE RIGHT PERSON, but that fun will come at a price...labor or $$$. If the reliability or an occasional $1500 repair bill isn't a concern, keep it.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Frisco Kid » Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:12 am

Mileage is low for a 12 year old car and you add little mileage each year. I see OP lives in Chicago, those of you that live in a similar climate will have a more relevant reply than I. In California's mediterrean climate 12 year old cars are commonplace.

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lthenderson
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby lthenderson » Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:33 am

White Coat Investor wrote:I have BOUGHT cars with more miles than yours has. I wouldn't sell it just because it is older and has a few miles on it and has some little irritating things.


I am increasingly bewildered at how disposable cars have become. I'm guessing I could put less than $100 worth of parts into your car and drive it another decade without a problem. Like WCI, I have bought cars with more problems and mileage, fixed them up and driven the wheels off them. I'm still driving a car I bought new 20 years ago but I've had to replace the windshield wipers more than once, a few other wear and tear items and even had the transmission rebuilt. It is still completely functional and reliable.

Sure go ahead and get rid of it for the reasons mentioned and get yourself a new car. It will make people like me happy to buy it and save ridiculous amounts of money and it will put more money into the economy making all my stock (purchased partly from saving money on vehicles) worth that much more. :thumbsup

Imbros
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Imbros » Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:45 am

lthenderson wrote:
White Coat Investor wrote:I have BOUGHT cars with more miles than yours has. I wouldn't sell it just because it is older and has a few miles on it and has some little irritating things.


I am increasingly bewildered at how disposable cars have become. I'm guessing I could put less than $100 worth of parts into your car and drive it another decade without a problem. Like WCI, I have bought cars with more problems and mileage, fixed them up and driven the wheels off them. I'm still driving a car I bought new 20 years ago but I've had to replace the windshield wipers more than once, a few other wear and tear items and even had the transmission rebuilt. It is still completely functional and reliable.

Sure go ahead and get rid of it for the reasons mentioned and get yourself a new car. It will make people like me happy to buy it and save ridiculous amounts of money and it will put more money into the economy making all my stock (purchased partly from saving money on vehicles) worth that much more. :thumbsup


As a fellow car guy I see the point you are making, but spending $100 and driving a 2005 Mini for another decade is extremely unrealistic.
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lthenderson
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby lthenderson » Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:50 am

Imbros wrote:
lthenderson wrote:
White Coat Investor wrote:I have BOUGHT cars with more miles than yours has. I wouldn't sell it just because it is older and has a few miles on it and has some little irritating things.


I am increasingly bewildered at how disposable cars have become. I'm guessing I could put less than $100 worth of parts into your car and drive it another decade without a problem. Like WCI, I have bought cars with more problems and mileage, fixed them up and driven the wheels off them. I'm still driving a car I bought new 20 years ago but I've had to replace the windshield wipers more than once, a few other wear and tear items and even had the transmission rebuilt. It is still completely functional and reliable.

Sure go ahead and get rid of it for the reasons mentioned and get yourself a new car. It will make people like me happy to buy it and save ridiculous amounts of money and it will put more money into the economy making all my stock (purchased partly from saving money on vehicles) worth that much more. :thumbsup


As a fellow car guy I see the point you are making, but spending $100 and driving a 2005 Mini for another decade is extremely unrealistic.


Let me rephrase a bit. Even if I put $200 worth of parts in the thing every single year, it would be a cheap vehicle to drive because it is mostly depreciated out and paid for. My point is just because a car needs some work doesn't make it a liability to your finances or unreliable to drive.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby jf89 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:53 am

How does a rear wiper rot and fall off? The only thing I can think of that would rot or fall off is the blade... which is meant to be replaced. Do you mean the arm in some way? I just can't picture it at all!

The "extremely rusted out" wheel and axle areas are probably not as bad as you think. Take a screw driver and scrape at it a bit. Are you able to get any considerable depth, get large flakes to come off, or push a hole through the steel? Or are you just scraping the surface? Any corrosion is bad, but surface rust is expected and not a big deal.

If both of those are fine, a hood latch shouldn't be too expensive to replace (just make sure the shop orders the part before taking your car and get a guaranteed return date), and the transmission issue looks like it's just a matter of keeping fluids up and flashing the software if there is a problem... fluids you can handle, and flashing the software is a quick, cheap fix for a shop with the right equipment. I'd venture to say that 12 years in, the computer problems won't hit your Mini.

Having said all that... if you really just want to get rid of this car for something better, there's nothing wrong with that. If you're concerned about it falling apart tomorrow, I think you'll be fine based on what you described.
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby DaftInvestor » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:02 am

If repairs start to add up it is certainly is time to consider an upgrade but unlike a lot of people who look at this as purely a financial equation - I always factor in peace of mind. Having a car that requires little maintenance and has few issues is worth more to me that getting some satisfaction with having driven a car into the ground. The avoided frustration of having issues when I'm about to embark on a weekend away, or simply trying to drive to work, is worth a lot to me. As such - I always buy reliable cars (usually new) and hold for a maximum 10 years. When the kids where young I would flip my wife's car sooner to get the latest safety and convenience features.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby AnonJohn » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:08 am

My serious response is to echo what's been said about repair cost exceeding value. My personal feeling is after 20 years or 200,000 miles it's OK to consider it. :)

I've gotten rid of two cars. One was dying anyways when the timing belt went. Repairs >> value. The second one I sold for more than I paid for it and it was 21 years old. Got lucky there; it became collectible. Currently driving a '99 Elantra and looking for that 20 year mark. Like you, I drive few miles. 66k on the elantra so far.

This leads me to another answer: When then number of kids no longer fits in the car ...

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby bubbadog » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:11 am

I suspect the OP has already made their decision and is just looking for confirmation that replacing the rear wiper is not worth the trouble. Good luck with that on Bogleheads.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Jack FFR1846 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:14 am

It is quite possible that the car hits a point where it seems like it self destructs. A neighbor had a BMW M3. There were so many times where it was broken down that he got tired of it and started leaving the keys on the seat, top down (convertible) and garage door open...even in the winter in hopes that someone would steal it. He finally traded it for a Mini Cooper convertible that he says is even more unreliable than the BMW was. They drive great but in the tradition of the original Mini, you'd best be a reasonably good mechanic. Set aside the same amount of repair time as the amount of time you drive the car.

Or trade it for a Honda and only see the dealer when you go to pick up dealer-only parts for normal maintenance.
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Kenkat
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Kenkat » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:19 am

lthenderson wrote:
Imbros wrote:
lthenderson wrote:
White Coat Investor wrote:I have BOUGHT cars with more miles than yours has. I wouldn't sell it just because it is older and has a few miles on it and has some little irritating things.


I am increasingly bewildered at how disposable cars have become. I'm guessing I could put less than $100 worth of parts into your car and drive it another decade without a problem. Like WCI, I have bought cars with more problems and mileage, fixed them up and driven the wheels off them. I'm still driving a car I bought new 20 years ago but I've had to replace the windshield wipers more than once, a few other wear and tear items and even had the transmission rebuilt. It is still completely functional and reliable.

Sure go ahead and get rid of it for the reasons mentioned and get yourself a new car. It will make people like me happy to buy it and save ridiculous amounts of money and it will put more money into the economy making all my stock (purchased partly from saving money on vehicles) worth that much more. :thumbsup


As a fellow car guy I see the point you are making, but spending $100 and driving a 2005 Mini for another decade is extremely unrealistic.


Let me rephrase a bit. Even if I put $200 worth of parts in the thing every single year, it would be a cheap vehicle to drive because it is mostly depreciated out and paid for. My point is just because a car needs some work doesn't make it a liability to your finances or unreliable to drive.


The worry is that it ends up being $200/mo. to keep it running when something major like a CVT fails. That said, I am currently driving a 2004 vehicle and agree with you that the Cooper probably has some life left in it with a modest amount of money put into it.

p.s. Wiper blades are a maintenance item meant to be replaced before they dry rot

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby barnaclebob » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:20 am

lthenderson wrote:
Imbros wrote:
As a fellow car guy I see the point you are making, but spending $100 and driving a 2005 Mini for another decade is extremely unrealistic.


Let me rephrase a bit. Even if I put $200 worth of parts in the thing every single year, it would be a cheap vehicle to drive because it is mostly depreciated out and paid for. My point is just because a car needs some work doesn't make it a liability to your finances or unreliable to drive.


OP said his version of the mini is prone to CVT issues. That wont average out to $200 a year. OP, I would sell it before the CVT goes because once that happens it will either be nearly worthless or you will be on the hook for a few thousand dollars to repair it.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby greg24 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:00 am

I disagree with the repair cost vs. value of the car requirement.

Getting your car repaired is a big hassle. I don't want to deal with that. Others may, or may want to fix it themselves. That is fine. But not everyone shares that opinion.

The OP is considering replacing a 12 year old model with a poor track record, and a few are wondering out loud how disposable cars have become? I think its just the opposite, cars are built so well nowadays, that a 12 year old car is still in good shape.

OP, if you want to replace the car, go ahead and do it. Peace of mind is worth something.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Watty » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:13 am

A big factor is how much of the car maintenance you can do yourself and how much you enjoy(or hate) working on cars. I do very little of my own car maintenance so my general plan is to replace a car when it gets to be about ten years old or has 150K miles, whichever comes first. This is not the least expensive way to own a car but it gives a reasonable yearly cost of ownership. This way I rarely have to deal with non-routine maintenance and always have a reliable car.

I normally buy Hondas and Toyotas and a ten your old car like that that is in good condition and has reasonable miles will still sell for a surprising amount of money which makes replacing them more reasonable since they retain their value for so long. I would suspect that the Mini dosn't have a great resale price even with the low millage.

mister_sparkle wrote:....and getting a used car with 30-40K miles on it


I have had good luck in buying a Hertz rental car with that sort of millage and you can see their inventory on line. There have been some threads about buying rental cars there are mixed opinions about if that is a good idea or not. With a car with that millage be sure to budget for new tires since the original ones are likely about due to be replaced.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby likegarden » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:35 am

I just bought a new car, traded-in a 105 k miles 2004 Buick Century for little money. I noticed last year that the dealer I brought the car to regularly did not know well how to fix older cars. Then I had to work underneath the car by myself last year. I also drive only 5,000 miles a year and am retired. I simply felt that older people do not need the worries about an old car, so I bought a new one and have peace.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Rupert » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:40 am

How easy is it to find parts for a Mini that old? That would be one of my worries. I have a 12-year-old old Acura now, and I'm beginning to have trouble finding non-re-manufactured replacement parts when things break. I can remember the days when you could just drive up to a junkyard and pick your parts off a wreck. But it seems all the junkyards have converted to internet sales primarily, and their parts aren't as cheap s they used to be. Supply and demand, I guess.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby btenny » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:43 am

German cars tend to get old fast in wet climates. VWs are the worst but BMWs and other German makes are similar. The rubber parts just wear out as they age independent of car mileage. Age just kills them. So antennas and wipers and window seals etc. die as the car ages. Yours seems like it is in that zone of wear. Lots of stuff breaking. I would sell it now and replace it with a Toyota or Honda or similar car.

Good Luck.

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Raymond
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Raymond » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:49 am

Demolition derby time, compact car division.
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teniralc
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby teniralc » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:53 am

mister_sparkle wrote:I have a 2005 Mini Cooper with 87K miles on it that is starting to show its age in certain ways. Mostly minor things, such as the rear windshield wiper rotting out and falling off, the latch that opens the hood no longer working, extremely rusted out wheel/axel parts I noticed while using a replacement tire. Bigger and more expensive repairs are no doubt right around the corner. And this model year Mini is somewhat notorious for a failed transmission design (CVT) that is a culprit in early failures for many Mini drivers (but not me yet).

I only drive about 5000 miles a year, so I've been thinking of trading my car in and getting a used car with 30-40K miles on it, knowing that I could likely drive it another 10 years without much worry. I could probably drive this car for another 5+ years but I am leery about the increasing nature of these minor headaches, and the transmission failure potential.

When do you make the decision to ditch your car and trade up? At what point do you think it's not worth it?


This is not necessarily my rule of thumb for replacing cars, but in looking back at the past car purchases, somewhere around when the car is about 10 or more years old and/or when it gets about 100,000 miles on it, I find that little things start to go. Even though these can be fixed, I have viewed them as a reminder to upgrade the car to a more modern car with the current safety features. Yes, it costs money but on each of the auto purchases, once I got the newer vehicle, I never looked back and was extremely glad that I made the choice.

That all being said, if you don't mind tinkering with fixing these little things as the come up, then I would say continue to drive it. I used to not mind when these things broke in my cars. But now I just want to know when I get in it, it will do what it is supposed to in a reasonably safe way.

Good luck

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G12
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby G12 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:53 am

greg24 wrote:I disagree with the repair cost vs. value of the car requirement.

Getting your car repaired is a big hassle. I don't want to deal with that. Others may, or may want to fix it themselves. That is fine. But not everyone shares that opinion.

The OP is considering replacing a 12 year old model with a poor track record, and a few are wondering out loud how disposable cars have become? I think its just the opposite, cars are built so well nowadays, that a 12 year old car is still in good shape.

OP, if you want to replace the car, go ahead and do it. Peace of mind is worth something.


I agree with this, especially given the specific car and age. This doesn't even go to the question of how much of the specified maintenance has been done during the ownership period. I would guess this is a base model due to the CVT, not the S turbo version. 2 neighbors in adjacent houses have had newer S version Mini's, one I think was 2009, the other 2010 year model. The one with the 2009 got rid of it just after 40k mileage point due to a litany of problems, the 2010 has about 55k miles and she still has it but only drives 5-6k miles per year and works from home and going without the car for repairs wouldn't bother her much. I would get rid of it as if you have to do major transmission or other large cost repairs it won't be worth it. I replaced my wife's 2012 turbo Beetle at YE 2016 due to every time I left town I would get a phone call it needed a significant repair. The repair issues got old, she needed the car for work, so peace of mind is worth something. Shopped for a month, got a great deal at YE 2016, unfortunately it is a new 2017 Beetle turbo but at least this one runs on regular gas, infotainment system is great and sounds crystal clear on BT or USB unlike the 2012, rides much better, better gas mileage, warranty, etc...It's not the car I would prefer to buy but it was a great price and drop in the bucket financially + she is very happy.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby mmmodem » Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:59 am

If the car isn't running, rule of thumb for me is:
(Cost of repair) + (value as-is) > (used value if running) then it's time to replace. It doesn't make sense to repair it if I can get the same car on the used market for less money. Some say you're gambling on a used car. I say your own broken car is a gamble as well.

If the car is running there is no rule of thumb. If I can afford another vehicle, I'm allowed to replace it for no reason at all. We just replaced a perfectly working 12 year old car with an SUV. Financially, we should keep the older car until it falls apart. However, we wanted more space for our growing family and we can afford it.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby bottlecap » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:10 pm

If you really think the transmission will go, then looking into replacing is legitimate.

But his is not a new vs repair decision or rule of thumb. This is an "I bought a poorly made car, should I cut my losses" thread.

If you decide you should, don't buy another bad car!

JT

misterno
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby misterno » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:16 pm

Just as an example

I have Toyota Yaris 2009 but I purchased on 2010. Last week it gave me the signal showing low tire pressure. I pulled to a Direct Tire for a free air. The guy said this is not about air it is about TPMS and I need to change it. Tire Pressure Monitoring System battery needs to be changed. Only 1 tire has the problem.

I specifically chosed the cheapest car to avoid electronics and complicated problems but it haunted me again. Googled it and found out that the parts are cheap and I can go to a Mexican tire shop and have them install for 10 bucks but the TPMS has to be programmed and only the dealer can do it for $90 per tire :shock:

I hate new cars

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby surfstar » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:36 pm

5k miles per year?
Perhaps a candidate for a used EV, like a Leaf for dirt cheap...

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby inbox788 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:38 pm

lthenderson wrote:I am increasingly bewildered at how disposable cars have become.

So it seems, but could it be more of an indication of your increase in wealth and affordability of new cars? The data is harder to interpret, but average age of cars on the road if going up, so they're not being disposed, just transferred to new owners. Hard to believe the average age of cars in the 70's was only 5-6 years, but it probably reflects a ramp up in production. The growth phase seems to have topped off and 2017 is predicted to be a peak year with used car prices falling (used cars have been holding their value). No way of knowing how accurate this is going to turn out, and may be like predicting the market. But there is a little asymmetry in that falling sales can be adjusted by cutting production, reducing shifts, or shutting down lines. On the other hand, increasing production often requires some significant lead time.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/cars-now-la ... ill-yours/

https://www.rita.dot.gov/bts/sites/rita ... 6.html_mfd

surfstar wrote:5k miles per year?
Perhaps a candidate for a used EV, like a Leaf for dirt cheap...

I've considered it, especially when you can get them for $5-10k used. But I didn't want to deal with salvage on the low end, and battery issues as they age. The range is decreasing with age, and costs for leaf batteries don't seem to have come down much. Bigger Prius community to tap into. AFAIK, it's about $5k to replace the Leaf battery pack. The Prius is smaller and costs about $1-2k, but you can DIY just the problematic ones for less.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UoSuKiqzd8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8p8Im1eL67Y

mister_sparkle wrote:I only drive about 5000 miles a year, so I've been thinking of trading my car in and getting a used car with 30-40K miles on it, knowing that I could likely drive it another 10 years without much worry. I could probably drive this car for another 5+ years but I am leery about the increasing nature of these minor headaches, and the transmission failure potential.

Sometime between now and 5 years sounds good. Do you have the luxury of selling the current car first? If not, just find the right replacement car first. Do it sooner than later if you can, and a good early impetus is finding a good deal on the sale of your current vehicle or a good deal on a replacement vehicle. Once that happens, you only need an average deal on the other. You don't want to wait till something major happens and you're without transportation and ditching the current car for a loss and in a hurry to buy a replacement. You've got some time to be patient for now.

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby sunny_socal » Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:04 pm

Your car sounds like it's still in decent shape and has relatively low miles. I'd keep fixing it. But it sounds like you're just sick of it, so go ahead.. upgrade! 8-)

My wife has also been complaining that her car is "getting worn out." There's nothing wrong with her car, she never washes it and keeps running through muddy puddles on purpose when it rains. She wants a Lexus, this is her way of trying to convince me! :?

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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby killjoy2012 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:07 pm

The advice provided in this thread is a YMMV situation based on geographical location. A 10-15 year old vehicle driven in the OP's Chicago area is going to be in much worse shape than those of you who live in the south or SoCal.

I don't necessarily buy the whole "if the repair cost exceeds the value, don't fix, replace" argument. That may make sense sometimes. For someone who rarely drives though, putting a $2500 trans into a $3000 vehicle (after fixed) may make perfect sense if the owner has reasonable belief the vehicle is going to be reliable afterwards. Seems like some are not factoring in the $20-60k replacement cost. Again, a lot of this depends on the situation.

That said, selling a car just because a windshield wiper wore out, or hood latch rusted/broke after 11 years, seems silly. How many months have you not had a car payment by driving your existing, old car.... and how does that saving compare to the perceived risk of possibly having to replace a transmission in the near future if you keep it? I'd keep gambling.

Then again, if you just want a new car because you want a new car, I don't think you need our permission. :happy

tim1999
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby tim1999 » Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:21 pm

I would probably drive it until the CVT blows up and then scrap the car. Make sure you have an AAA membership or similar roadside assistance plan.

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telemark
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby telemark » Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:28 pm

If the transmission problem shows up early and you haven't seen it at 87,000 miles, you're probably safe. But if you want to keep a car a long time it's best to deal with problems, even little ones, as soon as they show up. That way you don't look at it one day, notice what it's turned into, and suddenly hate the thing.

On the other hand, new cars are improved in lots of ways: better traction control, greatly reduced tailpipe emissions, backup cameras, etc., if any of that matters to you. It's a personal decision.

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Earl Lemongrab » Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:37 pm

greg24 wrote:Getting your car repaired is a big hassle. I don't want to deal with that.

Compared to shopping for and buying a car? I don't think so. For me repair is pretty easy. I go to my mechanic in the morning and they either give me a loaner or drive me to work depending on what they have available. Most of the time they get the repair done in a day.
This week's fortune cookie: "You will enjoy doing something spontaneous this weekend." Apparently that meant working on a dead PC, but I didn't enjoy that much.

Rotarman
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Rotarman » Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:37 am

Just as a counterpoint to those saying those model minis are not very reliable and it is near major repair anyways...
We have a 2006 mini bought at 50,000 which is now at 110,000 with a whopping $75 in repairs. Nothing else besides gas, oil, and tires (and some stripes because SO thought the bonnet stripes looked cool). I think the intra-model reliability variability often exceeds the inter-model variability. Until you can buy an index fund of cars, you're always rolling the dice (I guess that's what buying a warranty is?). If you want a new car and have the money I don't think anyone here will fault you, but I'd say there's a strong chance it keeps chugging along for a good while.

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Watty
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Watty » Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:23 am

inbox788 wrote:lthenderson wrote:
I am increasingly bewildered at how disposable cars have become.

So it seems, but could it be more of an indication of your increase in wealth and affordability of new cars?


I would disagree with that idea that cars are more disposable now than they used to be.

30+ years ago cars only came with a 12 month warranty and by the time they had 50,000 miles on them they were past their prime. If car ran well until it had 100,000 miles that was really good and 150,000 miles was almost unheard of.

Today even a mediocre car can be expected to go 100,000 miles with few significant problems.

I don't know what the statistics were but it used to not be uncommon for people to trade in cars every three to five years or even less.

PlagueOnWheels
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby PlagueOnWheels » Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:46 am

use rockauto.com to find replacement parts for your latch and wiper. They should be cheap enough, and easy to put on yourself with a wrench. Silly to get rid of a car because two small pieces of metal attached to it are broken.

alfaspider
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby alfaspider » Thu Feb 09, 2017 10:52 am

misterno wrote:Just as an example

I have Toyota Yaris 2009 but I purchased on 2010. Last week it gave me the signal showing low tire pressure. I pulled to a Direct Tire for a free air. The guy said this is not about air it is about TPMS and I need to change it. Tire Pressure Monitoring System battery needs to be changed. Only 1 tire has the problem.

I specifically chosed the cheapest car to avoid electronics and complicated problems but it haunted me again. Googled it and found out that the parts are cheap and I can go to a Mexican tire shop and have them install for 10 bucks but the TPMS has to be programmed and only the dealer can do it for $90 per tire :shock:

I hate new cars


You can buy a Toyota TMPS reset tool for under $50.

Zott
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Zott » Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:51 pm

mister_sparkle wrote:I have a 2005 Mini Cooper with 87K miles on it that is starting to show its age in certain ways. Mostly minor things, such as the rear windshield wiper rotting out and falling off, the latch that opens the hood no longer working, extremely rusted out wheel/axel parts I noticed while using a replacement tire. Bigger and more expensive repairs are no doubt right around the corner. And this model year Mini is somewhat notorious for a failed transmission design (CVT) that is a culprit in early failures for many Mini drivers (but not me yet).

I only drive about 5000 miles a year, so I've been thinking of trading my car in and getting a used car with 30-40K miles on it, knowing that I could likely drive it another 10 years without much worry. I could probably drive this car for another 5+ years but I am leery about the increasing nature of these minor headaches, and the transmission failure potential.

When do you make the decision to ditch your car and trade up? At what point do you think it's not worth it?


In my opinion, the best time to get rid of a car is BEFORE you have to start asking the type of questions you asked. But as you can see, there's a huge diversity of opinion on this subject, always will be.

Nova1967
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Nova1967 » Fri Feb 10, 2017 8:41 am

I believe it's best to get rid of a car when it starts overheating or burning oil, that's a sign of things to come.

Omo
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Omo » Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:44 pm

Just to add my experience.

Bought a VW golf in 2005. Services yearly, regular tyres changes etc but otherwise no costs until this year, so 12 years down the track, where coolant system broke down. Don't know the technical details but it will cost about 10% of the original new price to repair.

What i would like to know is what percentage of your net worth should one spend on a car as a Bogleghead? Does such a formula exist?

hudson
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby hudson » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:01 am

I don't get rid of a vehicle until either I've driven the value out of it or I no longer use it.
Many years ago, a friend and I were walking home after dove hunting with shotguns over our shoulders. An old gentleman pulled over to us in an old car. We both recognized him as a well known local surgeon. He talked with us for a while and remarked before leaving, "It's always good to have a "fishin" car!" I took that to mean that he liked to knock around town "under the radar".

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Parthenon
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Parthenon » Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:11 am

One major issue with selling the car, and I can't emphasize this enough, is to have a bill of sale with the new owners driver's license information on it. In the past I sold one vehicle to a private party and several months later got a call from a sheriff in a local county telling me it was abandoned on the highway and what did I want to do with it. After I explained that I sold it he didn't bother me anymore. For all I knew it could have been involved in an accident where someone had died.

My last vehicle I traded in last year to a dealer and a month later received certified letters from the Chicago police telling me that the car was impounded in a drug related incident and gave instructions on how to reclaim it. I just ignored the request because once again the car was no longer mine and I had proof.

In both instances the purchaser did not transfer title with the state which made me the owner as far as the state was concerned.Seller Beware!

Ed
"What am I gonna do if I run out of money?"

msk
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby msk » Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:29 am

Omo wrote:What i would like to know is what percentage of your net worth should one spend on a car as a Bogleghead? Does such a formula exist?

Some BHs are worth 9 figures, some a mere 6... When I was much younger the rule-of-thumb said never to spend more than 6 months income on a car. While that sounds sort of OK for a young graduate making $50k it already becomes questionable for a 35 year-old making $400k p.a.

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TheGreyingDuke
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby TheGreyingDuke » Sun Mar 19, 2017 11:50 am

alfaspider wrote:
misterno wrote:Just as an example

I have Toyota Yaris 2009 but I purchased on 2010. Last week it gave me the signal showing low tire pressure. I pulled to a Direct Tire for a free air. The guy said this is not about air it is about TPMS and I need to change it. Tire Pressure Monitoring System battery needs to be changed. Only 1 tire has the problem.

I specifically chosed the cheapest car to avoid electronics and complicated problems but it haunted me again. Googled it and found out that the parts are cheap and I can go to a Mexican tire shop and have them install for 10 bucks but the TPMS has to be programmed and only the dealer can do it for $90 per tire :shock:

I hate new cars


You can buy a Toyota TMPS reset tool for under $50.


When one goes, the rest are not far behind so for sure replace them all. When I did so on my 2009 Jetta I only had to drive it for a few miles and the sensors set themselves, Toyotas may work differently
"Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race." H.G. Wells

Geist
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby Geist » Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:09 pm

Personally, from a maintenance standpoint, I'd keep the car until it actually fails... Wait for the CVT (or another major component) to die, building up cash in the meantime, then when you're having a $2k-$3k fix, replace it. With that said, there may be reasons that you can't tolerate waiting for it to fail, and that's a judgement call that you have to make. If you're tired of the car, don't trust it, and want a change... So be it. But I do agree with others in saying that the car seems worthy to be kept with a few minor upkeep repairs in the meantime.

p14175
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby p14175 » Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:32 pm

Do the repairs that will make it attractive to potential buyers then take it to a detailer. In selling or even trading in a used vehicle, the better it looks the higher the price. Perception is everything.

carofe
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby carofe » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:06 pm

My rule of thumbs: 250k miles.
You can still put another 100k in that car!

$3k repair bill is much less than buying another car.
Usually those massive bills are to replace components that will last you at least another 80k or so more miles.

panhead
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Re: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

Postby panhead » Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:52 pm

As someone also living in the rustbelt, I'll say this: I've seen trucks of that year (2005) have frames that have rusted so badly that they split. I've seen driveshafts rust in half. Never mind the brake, transmission, and fuel lines that always seem to rust off first and that can be dangerous.

That being said, it doesn't mean YOUR car is in that kind of shape. If you are not mechanically inclined, but have a mechanic you trust, have them put the car up on the lift and see if there is anything corrosion wise that will be in imminent danger of failing. Cars in the rust belt areas often die from corrosion long long before they run out of life. My friends that have lived in California their entire lives just do not understand this fact. Anyway, if the mechanic says its in decent shape, or if even a brake line or two needs to be replaced but structurally its fine, I'd fix the small problems and just drive it. Wash it after every snowstorm to get the salt off, change all fluids religiously, etc.

Full disclosure: I'm a car guy. My current truck is a 2005 model as well. I've started getting some body corrosion on it that doesn't look great, but structurally its very safe and in excellent condition as I coat the underneath and wash it religiously after it gets salted. I've got over 120k on it, and at around 200k I might start shopping.....or not.....as long as I can keep the rust issues at bay, which is no easy task.


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