The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Post Reply
XDark_FenixX
Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:06 pm

The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by XDark_FenixX » Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:08 pm

Hi all,

I'm curious what the consensus on car body repairs is on this forum. I have a 2009 Maxima that I really love. The body is starting to rust and I'm strongly considering getting that repaired. However, given the age of the car and the likelihood of future rust is that even worth it? It's only got like 63k miles on it and everything else functions well. I could probably live with the rust but I don't really want to be driving something with holes in it later on. How do you guys decide whether it's worth fixing the body of a car or just saving for a new/newer car? Or is there a great away of dealing with rust I'm unaware of since I've seen quite a few threads advocating the purchase of used cars?

runner3081
Posts: 1068
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:22 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by runner3081 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:28 pm

I personally do not fix body damage on older cars. We are in AZ, so rust is not an issue (not sure if there are long-term frame and safety issues with that), but right now the front bumper cover of my car and the plastic splash shield are zip tied to the radiator supports :)

The clear coat is also gone on my car, haha.

I would rather save the money for my next purchase than put more into these care when it comes to cosmetic items.

For mechanical issues, I fix whatever goes wrong with them. Just put a new radiator and brakes in the 2005 and had numerous leaks taken care of in the 1999.

XDark_FenixX
Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:06 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by XDark_FenixX » Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:46 pm

runner3081 wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:28 pm
I personally do not fix body damage on older cars. We are in AZ, so rust is not an issue (not sure if there are long-term frame and safety issues with that), but right now the front bumper cover of my car and the plastic splash shield are zip tied to the radiator supports :)

The clear coat is also gone on my car, haha.

I would rather save the money for my next purchase than put more into these care when it comes to cosmetic items.

For mechanical issues, I fix whatever goes wrong with them. Just put a new radiator and brakes in the 2005 and had numerous leaks taken care of in the 1999.
I figured body was going to be rather polarizing. But like you said I'm not sure if rust is going to be all too permissible safety/inspection wise going down the line.

Aren't those mechanical issues expensive as well? When do you decide it would be better to just buy another car?

onourway
Posts: 786
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by onourway » Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:49 pm

I drive mostly older cars and will repair anything mechanical. Body work is either expensive and doesn't last very well or really expensive if you want it to last. So while we also live in a salt area, I try to avoid cars that rust because properly addressing it is difficult.

Where is the rust and how severe is it?

Do you know why it rusted? Japanese cars are not generally well rust-proofed, but rusting in less than 10 years is unusual. Do you wash the car regularly? (Good) Do you park it in a heated garage? (Bad)

Have you had any estimates done yet for the repair?

runner3081
Posts: 1068
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:22 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by runner3081 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:34 pm

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:46 pm
runner3081 wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:28 pm
I personally do not fix body damage on older cars. We are in AZ, so rust is not an issue (not sure if there are long-term frame and safety issues with that), but right now the front bumper cover of my car and the plastic splash shield are zip tied to the radiator supports :)

The clear coat is also gone on my car, haha.

I would rather save the money for my next purchase than put more into these care when it comes to cosmetic items.

For mechanical issues, I fix whatever goes wrong with them. Just put a new radiator and brakes in the 2005 and had numerous leaks taken care of in the 1999.
I figured body was going to be rather polarizing. But like you said I'm not sure if rust is going to be all too permissible safety/inspection wise going down the line.

Aren't those mechanical issues expensive as well? When do you decide it would be better to just buy another car?
Yes, they can be very expensive. However, when you factor in the lower insurance and licensing costs, it makes sense to keep them going. I will never buy a new car, so there will always be maintenance and repairs. I know and trust the cars, which is not something I can say for another used car. Yes, at some point when the transmission or engine goes, they will be done, otherwise, I don't see a good reason to replace now.

Flawed or not, I figure I would spend about 15K for a decent used car with 30-50K miles on it. Those cars will need the same repairs in 50-70K miles as our cars are going through now. It would take a lot of repairs to hit the extra 15K on top of the hundreds of dollars in licensing each year.

XDark_FenixX
Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:06 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by XDark_FenixX » Sun Feb 11, 2018 6:08 pm

onourway wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:49 pm
I drive mostly older cars and will repair anything mechanical. Body work is either expensive and doesn't last very well or really expensive if you want it to last. So while we also live in a salt area, I try to avoid cars that rust because properly addressing it is difficult.

Where is the rust and how severe is it?

Do you know why it rusted? Japanese cars are not generally well rust-proofed, but rusting in less than 10 years is unusual. Do you wash the car regularly? (Good) Do you park it in a heated garage? (Bad)

Have you had any estimates done yet for the repair?
Thanks for the response. I know a guy who generally is willing to do this stuff for fairly cheap. He fixed a rust spot along the door, fixed a cracked bumper, repaired a dent, and repainted everything for about $1100. I'm expecting this one to not be too much. The rusting area is right above the rear wheel where the body meets the plastic guards. It's pretty bad and slowly moving toward the more visible parts of the body but I'm hoping it won't cost more than $400.

I don't wash the car regularly (I guess I should) and its parked outside so fairly rust-prone conditions I guess.

User avatar
dwickenh
Posts: 981
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:45 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by dwickenh » Sun Feb 11, 2018 6:17 pm

Rust repair is a different animal than collision repair work. In the process of repairing rust, the metal around the rust area is thinned by the grinding of the rust area. This causes additional rust in the same general area after all the expense of painting the original rust repairs. Metal replacement is the best avenue, but not an air tight guarantee. Some companies produce rust repair panels for common rust areas on vehicles. This is much less expensive than the factory panels for rear 1/4 panel repairs.

As a Body shop person, I would not repair rust unless the car had an intrinsic value that would support the money spent(frame off restoration of valuable older vehicles)

It is really a personal decision based on your attachment to the vehicle and ability to drive it in less than pristine condition.

Good luck on your decision.

p.s. Safety is likely not a problem, but an inspection when your tires are rotated would likely put your mind at ease.

Dan
The market is the most efficient mechanism anywhere in the world for transferring wealth from impatient people to patient people.” | — Warren Buffett

Terri-bh
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:41 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Terri-bh » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:39 pm

If your car is a frequently bought model/color, you may be able to get parts from a car in a junkyard. You may have to remove them yourself, but you never know what you will find. Might be $200 instead of $1100.

Helo80
Posts: 555
Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2017 8:47 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Helo80 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:48 pm

It's a 9.5 year old car. While it's a great car to you, it has zero sentimental value to anybody else and will be compared against other Maxima's (and similarly equipped makes) of that era. You're unlikely to get much of the repair work back when it comes to dealer trade in or private sale. I personally would forego the rust repairs and put the money in a piggy bank for a new or new to you vehicle.

Cars are not like homes where you keep something 10, 20, 30, 40, etc. years old going.

onourway
Posts: 786
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by onourway » Mon Feb 12, 2018 8:45 am

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 6:08 pm

Thanks for the response. I know a guy who generally is willing to do this stuff for fairly cheap. He fixed a rust spot along the door, fixed a cracked bumper, repaired a dent, and repainted everything for about $1100. I'm expecting this one to not be too much. The rusting area is right above the rear wheel where the body meets the plastic guards. It's pretty bad and slowly moving toward the more visible parts of the body but I'm hoping it won't cost more than $400.

I don't wash the car regularly (I guess I should) and its parked outside so fairly rust-prone conditions I guess.
Fairly cheap and body work don't go well together. More than likely he'll make it look decent for now, and it'll probably last a few years or so before starting to come back. Good rust repair requires a tremendous amount of prep time; there is no way to cut corners and make it long-lasting. So, if you'll be happier not looking at the rust for a few years vs. keeping the $400 or so, I'd do it.

I'd get in the habit of washing your car at least every two weeks in the winter. I use the DIY wash bays where I can wash the car for about $4 rather than the $10-12 for the auto wash. Focus more on getting the salt off than getting the car clean. I use only the high pressure soap and rinse settings and can do the whole car in about 5 minutes. Focus on the wheel wells, spray underneath the car, and into the wheels where salt really builds up on the brake components. This should buy you a few extra years before the vehicle shows rust. I have a couple of cars that are 20 years old we drive year round in one of the worst salt areas of the country and no rust.

spammagnet
Posts: 810
Joined: Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:42 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by spammagnet » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:15 am

I've kept a new car as long as 17 years. I would have impact or other damage repaired but I would never bother with rust repair. I would get rid of the car as soon as it became evident, before the value of the car (if any) was completely trashed.

I have had a faded car repainted with the knowledge that the repaint job would not last nearly as long as the original. (It was a cheap job. If expensive it wouldn't have been worthwhile.) The improvement in appearance was acceptable to DW, the driver, allowing us to keep it a couple more years at the cost of a few hundred bucks. (The interior and mechanics were good.)

I was satisfied with the value and would do it again under similar circumstances.

Jack FFR1846
Posts: 6302
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:18 am

The car has cancer and you don't have insurance. Spray some expandable foam in the hole, grind the foam flush, spray with duplicolor color matched to your car.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

likegarden
Posts: 2480
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 5:33 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by likegarden » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:25 am

On rusting older cars usually the rust comes back in a few years when you only fix it with Bondo and rust-preventive paint. Body shops would cut out rusting parts and replace them, and that will last a lot of years and cost relatively a lot. On my 2004 Buick I used Bondo underneath doors, spent a whole weekend under the car, and finally figured out that I needed a new car and bought one. I got only a few hundred bucks for the 13 year old car - it helped in my decision that the electric mirrors no longer worked.

gotester2000
Posts: 140
Joined: Sun Nov 12, 2017 1:59 am

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by gotester2000 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:27 am

Give an anti rust coat to the underbody of the car(preferably in its early days)which will give it a long life.

Dont do any unneeded repairs to a 10 year old car.

User avatar
Frugal Al
Posts: 1674
Joined: Fri May 28, 2010 10:09 am

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Frugal Al » Tue Feb 13, 2018 8:45 am

onourway wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:49 pm
Do you know why it rusted? Japanese cars are not generally well rust-proofed, but rusting in less than 10 years is unusual.
Old reputations die hard, but since the mid to late 90's or so, most of the Japanese manufacturers in the U.S. have been using double side galvanized steel. That took care of much of their rust-thru problems. Every auto mfrr has had periods of less the stellar rust resistance, even the Germans. There was an old saying that went something like, "The Germans invented rust, and the Japanese perfected it."

The Swedes certainly seem to have always had pretty good corrosion resistance. I can't remember ever seeing a rusted out Volvo or Saab. Most manufacturers seem to have a fairly good handle on corrosion/rust resistance today.

alfaspider
Posts: 1107
Joined: Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:44 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by alfaspider » Tue Feb 13, 2018 9:19 am

Significant rust repairs rarely make sense unless the car is a valuable or personally significant classic. It tends to be like an iceberg. If you see a little visible spot of rust somewhere on the body, it's highly likely that there is significant rust you can't see.

Classics with any significant rust will be restored by stripping everything to a bare chassis and completely stripping all paint. It's a $20k+ process just to get the chassis into tip-top shape.

User avatar
Pajamas
Posts: 3645
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Pajamas » Tue Feb 13, 2018 9:24 am

Don't think of it as a rusty old junker. Think of it as your wabi-sabi vehicle and it will enrich your sense of appreciation of the wonder of the universe. :beer

XDark_FenixX
Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:06 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by XDark_FenixX » Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:15 pm

Thanks for the responses guys. I guess I'll see what the quote ends up being and probably lean towards a no. Just seems like such a shame to watch the body go

User avatar
ScooterBob
Posts: 61
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2015 1:21 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by ScooterBob » Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:45 pm

I was in the same position as you -also with a Nissan- a couple years ago. I have a 2002 Sentra that was starting to have a bit of rust. The dogleg on the passenger side was going along with a spot on the rocker on the same side. That one was more underneath than on the side. Both were getting bad quickly. Not many body shops will touch rust repair. It is too much work (time) and they really can't guarantee the repair. 95% of people will complain all over social media if/when the rust returns.. not worth it to them and I don't blame them for not wanting to do that kind of work. I found a body shop really close that said he'd do it with no guarantee etc. $300 bucks and that included sandblasting the edge of the drivers side rocker and paint that too. This was done in August of 2016. Still holding up 100% and it is going through a terrible winter again. I just washed it by hand today and nothing. This car is now 16 years old. Looks better than most 5 year old cars. That was the BEST $300 bucks I ever spent. So far I've gotten a couple more years of a car that looks new. Big money saver.

Just sharing my experience.

Bob

Savesavesave
Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Mar 07, 2017 11:21 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Savesavesave » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:50 pm

runner3081 wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:28 pm
But like you said I'm not sure if rust is going to be all too permissible safety/inspection wise going down the line.
What country has safety inspections on body rust and condition? Here in the USA we have some metro counties that do smog test and it's bad enough. Not the freedom that generations before fought for.

2comma
Posts: 1171
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2010 11:37 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by 2comma » Wed Feb 14, 2018 12:24 am

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:15 pm
Thanks for the responses guys. I guess I'll see what the quote ends up being and probably lean towards a no. Just seems like such a shame to watch the body go
That sounds like a good way to look at it. If it was only a few hundred bucks and it gives you a few more years of use I'd consider it but I wouldn't expect a permanent rust fix. I'd look at it as a race between what does the car in - the rust or a mechanical issue.
If I am stupid I will pay.

msk
Posts: 635
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 10:40 am

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by msk » Wed Feb 14, 2018 12:40 am

There is a huge difference between repairing for cosmetic looks and repairing because a significant portion of the body is rusting away in unseen places. The colder your climate is, the worse the situation. Many years ago when I was living in Canada, I had some rust spots appearing on top of the front wheel arches. Did not bother me, just ignored them. Then one snowy day there was 6+" patch of snow at the traffic lights, and the floor mat beneath my feet lifted! When I looked below it, there was hardly any floor left. Repaired it by having somebody rivet an aluminum plate on top of it. He punctured a hydraulic suspension line and the car dropped. He then had to repair the suspension line! I decided to sell the car for a 100$. Check under the car!

runner3081
Posts: 1068
Joined: Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:22 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by runner3081 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 1:40 pm

Savesavesave wrote:
Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:50 pm
runner3081 wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:28 pm
But like you said I'm not sure if rust is going to be all too permissible safety/inspection wise going down the line.
What country has safety inspections on body rust and condition? Here in the USA we have some metro counties that do smog test and it's bad enough. Not the freedom that generations before fought for.
You misquoted the wrong poster, I did not say that :)

Jack FFR1846
Posts: 6302
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 2:57 pm

Savesavesave wrote:
Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:50 pm

What country has safety inspections on body rust and condition? Here in the USA we have some metro counties that do smog test and it's bad enough. Not the freedom that generations before fought for.
The People's Republic of Massachusetts, for one. The "spray in some expanding foam, sand and paint" was what an inspection station said to do with a co-worker of mine. They failed him and he came back after the weekend with that "repair" done and passed. Inspectors now have to wear body cams and several cameras are in the inspection bay live back at the DMV. So they see a rust hole but if it's not obvious, they see nothing.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

brajalle
Posts: 145
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:03 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by brajalle » Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:13 am

I have a 19 year old Honda in the midwest that has zero rust. YMMV.

As far as repair, look at the quote cost, but personally I'd probably just skip cosmetic repairs and only try to halt the rust's progression and make sure there's nothing going on with rust underneath. Your car could easily run for another 10+ years, so it seems like a shame to not try to arrest the problem and try to extract the remaining transportation value of the car as long as possible.

XDark_FenixX
Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:06 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by XDark_FenixX » Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:20 pm

brajalle wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:13 am
I have a 19 year old Honda in the midwest that has zero rust. YMMV.

As far as repair, look at the quote cost, but personally I'd probably just skip cosmetic repairs and only try to halt the rust's progression and make sure there's nothing going on with rust underneath. Your car could easily run for another 10+ years, so it seems like a shame to not try to arrest the problem and try to extract the remaining transportation value of the car as long as possible.
Small update - so I got a quote of $150 to get a grind and prime job. Certainly not bad at all. I'm thinking I might just get some rust converter and paint it on the surface to try and stop the rusting. Would that be sufficient or do I absolutely have to sand it down myself to really stop it from rusting?

Any other cheap/effective way to halt the rust's progression?

mariezzz
Posts: 112
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:02 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by mariezzz » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:26 pm

dwickenh wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 6:17 pm
Rust repair is a different animal than collision repair work. In the process of repairing rust, the metal around the rust area is thinned by the grinding of the rust area. This causes additional rust in the same general area after all the expense of painting the original rust repairs. Metal replacement is the best avenue, but not an air tight guarantee. Some companies produce rust repair panels for common rust areas on vehicles. This is much less expensive than the factory panels for rear 1/4 panel repairs.

As a Body shop person, I would not repair rust unless the car had an intrinsic value that would support the money spent(frame off restoration of valuable older vehicles)

It is really a personal decision based on your attachment to the vehicle and ability to drive it in less than pristine condition.

Good luck on your decision.

p.s. Safety is likely not a problem, but an inspection when your tires are rotated would likely put your mind at ease.

Dan
Thanks for this info!

mariezzz
Posts: 112
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:02 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by mariezzz » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:30 pm

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:20 pm
brajalle wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:13 am
I have a 19 year old Honda in the midwest that has zero rust. YMMV.

As far as repair, look at the quote cost, but personally I'd probably just skip cosmetic repairs and only try to halt the rust's progression and make sure there's nothing going on with rust underneath. Your car could easily run for another 10+ years, so it seems like a shame to not try to arrest the problem and try to extract the remaining transportation value of the car as long as possible.
Small update - so I got a quote of $150 to get a grind and prime job. Certainly not bad at all. I'm thinking I might just get some rust converter and paint it on the surface to try and stop the rusting. Would that be sufficient or do I absolutely have to sand it down myself to really stop it from rusting?

Any other cheap/effective way to halt the rust's progression?
The rust converter may work - I did it where tiny bits of rust were coming through on my car & it works. I painted over it - car is white. First time, I bought a bottle of the paint that was supposed to match the original, but of course, it didn't quite, and the rust converter/rust underneath made for a 'not smooth' finish. More recently, I've just sprayed rustoleum over some rusty spots. Don't think that looks any worse. Car is 20 years old. Hope to get another 10. Don't care much about the cosmetic appearance, but wanted to stop the rust if possible. Most of the spots are on the hood, mainly around where it opens.

User avatar
dwickenh
Posts: 981
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:45 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by dwickenh » Fri Feb 16, 2018 7:34 pm

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:20 pm
brajalle wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:13 am
I have a 19 year old Honda in the midwest that has zero rust. YMMV.

As far as repair, look at the quote cost, but personally I'd probably just skip cosmetic repairs and only try to halt the rust's progression and make sure there's nothing going on with rust underneath. Your car could easily run for another 10+ years, so it seems like a shame to not try to arrest the problem and try to extract the remaining transportation value of the car as long as possible.
Small update - so I got a quote of $150 to get a grind and prime job. Certainly not bad at all. I'm thinking I might just get some rust converter and paint it on the surface to try and stop the rusting. Would that be sufficient or do I absolutely have to sand it down myself to really stop it from rusting?

Any other cheap/effective way to halt the rust's progression?
Short of fender flares on a Maxima, there is not a cheap fix for rust that lasts more than a few months. I am thinking fender flares will look bad....

The rust converter may buy you some time, and makes the most sense in your situation.
The market is the most efficient mechanism anywhere in the world for transferring wealth from impatient people to patient people.” | — Warren Buffett

JHU ALmuni
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2015 12:40 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by JHU ALmuni » Fri Feb 16, 2018 8:52 pm

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:08 pm
Hi all,

I'm curious what the consensus on car body repairs is on this forum. I have a 2009 Maxima that I really love. The body is starting to rust and I'm strongly considering getting that repaired. However, given the age of the car and the likelihood of future rust is that even worth it? It's only got like 63k miles on it and everything else functions well. I could probably live with the rust but I don't really want to be driving something with holes in it later on. How do you guys decide whether it's worth fixing the body of a car or just saving for a new/newer car? Or is there a great away of dealing with rust I'm unaware of since I've seen quite a few threads advocating the purchase of used cars?

Exactly my dilemma with my 2004 car that worth a little over $4000 now. Since everything is running fine and I'm planning to keep it for few more years, I usually fix cosmetic issues only if I I can do it myself for cheap (cost under a $100) otherwise I will just live with it.

brajalle
Posts: 145
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 12:03 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by brajalle » Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:37 pm

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:20 pm
brajalle wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:13 am
I have a 19 year old Honda in the midwest that has zero rust. YMMV.

As far as repair, look at the quote cost, but personally I'd probably just skip cosmetic repairs and only try to halt the rust's progression and make sure there's nothing going on with rust underneath. Your car could easily run for another 10+ years, so it seems like a shame to not try to arrest the problem and try to extract the remaining transportation value of the car as long as possible.
Small update - so I got a quote of $150 to get a grind and prime job. Certainly not bad at all. I'm thinking I might just get some rust converter and paint it on the surface to try and stop the rusting. Would that be sufficient or do I absolutely have to sand it down myself to really stop it from rusting?

Any other cheap/effective way to halt the rust's progression?
There's some other good posts here for suggestions.

I don't think $150 is too bad at all - I'd probably do it if it were my car (I change my oil - won't go beyond that, let alone anything on the body). When I say cosmetic I meant expensive panel replacement & repainting/etc. I would want to stop the problem though as to prevent potential structural issues/leaks/etc further down the line.

2comma
Posts: 1171
Joined: Thu Jul 15, 2010 11:37 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by 2comma » Sat Feb 17, 2018 2:09 am

XDark_FenixX wrote:
Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:20 pm
brajalle wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:13 am
I have a 19 year old Honda in the midwest that has zero rust. YMMV.

As far as repair, look at the quote cost, but personally I'd probably just skip cosmetic repairs and only try to halt the rust's progression and make sure there's nothing going on with rust underneath. Your car could easily run for another 10+ years, so it seems like a shame to not try to arrest the problem and try to extract the remaining transportation value of the car as long as possible.
Small update - so I got a quote of $150 to get a grind and prime job. Certainly not bad at all. I'm thinking I might just get some rust converter and paint it on the surface to try and stop the rusting. Would that be sufficient or do I absolutely have to sand it down myself to really stop it from rusting?

Any other cheap/effective way to halt the rust's progression?
I'm having a hard time visualizing how much rust you have, almost always more than you think. I did a body off restore of an old rusty VW bug and cut out most of the cancer and mig welded in new panels. There were a few spots where it made sense to use a product called POR-15. It actually combines very well with rusty steel and lasts but you'd have to abrade any steel that isn't rusty to get it to stick. It's possible to paint a color over it but it requires special procedures. It is very good for unpainted frames and under bodies. Something you might want to look into to see if it is a good fit.
If I am stupid I will pay.

onourway
Posts: 786
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by onourway » Sat Feb 17, 2018 7:06 am

Find the local auto body paint store in town - the place where the professionals get their supplies. Drive the car in and show it to them. If it's something you can mitigate on your own they'll tell you what to use and how to apply it. It won't look as good as if a professional does it, but you might be able to stop the rust. It will probably require a bit of sanding and some special primer.

Nova1967
Posts: 136
Joined: Fri May 27, 2016 3:22 pm

Re: The value of car body repairs/upkeep of older cars?

Post by Nova1967 » Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:48 pm

You must be up north where sodium chloride (Rock Salt) is used to melt the snow. I have cars over 10 years old that look like new. (They are always garaged and I live in FL) I would shop around and get different quotes. A mom and pop shop might give you a good deal, I notice when I get quotes on body work there can be a large variation. I would avoid the franchise body shops like Macao or the high end auto tech body shops since your going to be paying out of pocket. Although the car is 9 years old 63K it has low miles for its age and if preserved could last you several more years.

Post Reply