Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

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Myopic squirrel
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Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Myopic squirrel » Mon May 14, 2018 5:12 pm

Let me start by saying I usually drive my cars almost into the ground - sold my '94 Accord w/ 223K last year. Have a 2004 Acura TSX, driven by DW, purchased used in Feb '07 with 38K miles, now with 108K. Now retired, probably averaging only 3-4K annually. The car has performed flawlessly. 6 speed MT, 200 HP, handles great and fun to drive, good local/highway mileage. Have only replaced wear items (tires, brake pads, rotors, etc) and did all scheduled maintenance. Paint & interior in excellent condition, this car has been well cared for. Just started a shifting problem (grinding going into reverse) which may be clutch master cylinder and/or slave cylinder - maybe more. While I'm waiting for mechanic's diagnosis (he specializes in Acuras) does anyone know of a suggested ratio of repair cost to car's value? Thank you in advance!

livesoft
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by livesoft » Mon May 14, 2018 5:21 pm

I always used "future use" rather than your ratio. For instance, if I thought I could get another 25,000 miles out of a repair, I might spend $2,500.

You might figure you cost-per-mile over the past 10 years and use that instead of 10 cents a mile or whatever.
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aspirit
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by aspirit » Mon May 14, 2018 6:10 pm

We all look at things differently.

Where could you get another auto w/a history you know for the cost of its anticipated repair?

One of my cars has over 1million miles on it(on its paper's),150k on the odometer, I have no idea actually how many miles are on it and it's running fine. I paid <1k for it, fixed its minor maintenance needs for <1k and its 100%.

The other auto has >250k on it
As you might suspect, I'd keep it and fix it unless the motor was gone.

Both autos are of the Toyota family like yours.
Last edited by aspirit on Mon May 14, 2018 9:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Alexa9
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Alexa9 » Mon May 14, 2018 6:19 pm

That sounds like a relatively minor repair. A major repair on a car is more debatable. However your car is getting on the older side so a lot of minor repairs would add up to me wanting to upgrade.

Jack FFR1846
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Mon May 14, 2018 6:38 pm

On "Car Talk", Click and Clack used to talk about this. Say you're driving a $1000 car. You need new tires. Well, there's close to the value of the car just to get tires. But if you get the tires, you could drive another 50k miles or the car could need a transmission in 1000 miles. But even if it did, it would be cheaper than buying a new car.

A clutch master and slave replacement on your car is a piece of cake to do and inexpensive. Heck, I replaced both on an 08 Subaru Legacy GT which required removing the intercooler and even that was a piece of cake. This should not be expensive. If it's the transmission.....heck......learn to double clutch and rev match when shifting.
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SeaToTheBay
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by SeaToTheBay » Mon May 14, 2018 7:18 pm

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 6:38 pm
On "Car Talk", Click and Clack used to talk about this. Say you're driving a $1000 car. You need new tires. Well, there's close to the value of the car just to get tires. But if you get the tires, you could drive another 50k miles or the car could need a transmission in 1000 miles. But even if it did, it would be cheaper than buying a new car.
Well said.

108k on a TSX is like age 35 in human years. A transmission fix at a reasonable cost could likely give you a lot more trouble-free miles, especially since you only drive 3-4k/yr.

runner3081
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by runner3081 » Mon May 14, 2018 8:07 pm

aspirit wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 6:10 pm
We all look at things differently.

Where could you get another auto w/a history you know for the cost of its anticipated repair?
+1

We just put $1.4K into a vehicle valued at $2.2k last summer. Didn't even hesitate to do it.

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Sasquatch
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Sasquatch » Mon May 14, 2018 9:49 pm

I have a 2006 Chevy diesel pickup 127k miles. I drive it about 4K a year. I budget $1500 a year for maintenance and repairs. If I don’t use it I accrue it. Sure beats $60k new for the same truck.

Repair the car. Acura’s are very nice and durable to boot. Sounds like you have fun driving it too.....bonus

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bottlecap
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by bottlecap » Tue May 15, 2018 6:50 am

On an older car, I’ve repaired for the value of the car, maybe even a little more.

As others have said, it’s more about the remaining life than the vehicle's value.

JT

wrongfunds
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by wrongfunds » Tue May 15, 2018 7:38 am

Acura TSX manual transmission car is probably the top 10 car of all time. You would be insane to give it up for leaky slave cylinder.

Rupert
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Rupert » Tue May 15, 2018 7:53 am

I own that same car but with the automatic transmission. It's the first car I've owned that I actually love. But it's had some major problems, and I wish I had gotten rid of it about two years ago. How's your power steering system? Every component of my power steering system has been replaced at least once (including a rack job a year and a half ago), and it just started leaking power steering fluid again. I've also had problems in the last two years with the ignition system, replacing all four ignition coils. Note my tranny is still going fine; I've never had to do anything to the tranny except change the fluid. The power steering has been an issue since the car was about 5 years old. No way will I fix it again. It's literally limping to the finish line and will be donated to charity or given to Carmax (for whatever price they'll pay me) when it next needs a repair.

I throw this information out just as a warning of what you may be in for in the next few years if you keep the car. A lot of people had problems with the power steering system in the first generation TSX. I was even able to get Acura to pay for some of the early repairs on that system. It appears you've just been lucky so far. The ignition coil problem was unexpected. I've never had to replace an ignition coil on a vehicle before. Can't say whether it's a problem unique to the first generation TSX or just bad luck. I also have replaced the alternator at some point -- that may have been around the same time as the ignition coils. (I can't remember that repair as well because it wasn't terribly expensive).

Steady59
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Steady59 » Tue May 15, 2018 8:18 am

Are the clutch master and slave cylinder really the issue? How do you know?

When was the last time the fluid was changed? I'd start with some good fluid (with old BMWs we use Redline) to see if that helps. It has worked for me multiple times.

bubbadog
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by bubbadog » Tue May 15, 2018 8:45 am

wrongfunds wrote:
Tue May 15, 2018 7:38 am
Acura TSX manual transmission car is probably the top 10 car of all time. You would be insane to give it up for leaky slave cylinder.
Agree, no need for some crazy repair/value ratio. Just get it fixed. It is a great car.

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lthenderson
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by lthenderson » Tue May 15, 2018 9:05 am

livesoft wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 5:21 pm
I always used "future use" rather than your ratio. For instance, if I thought I could get another 25,000 miles out of a repair, I might spend $2,500.

You might figure you cost-per-mile over the past 10 years and use that instead of 10 cents a mile or whatever.
+1 Exactly what I do.

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Earl Lemongrab
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Earl Lemongrab » Tue May 15, 2018 11:09 am

For me a comparison like that doesn't work. There is a substantial cost in time and effort to replace a vehicle, especially if it's your only transportation. I have the additional problem of driving a full-sized Bronco, which hasn't been made in over 20 years. So I'd have to find another one or change to a different vehicle type.

As long as the repairs are reasonable, I'm generally going to go with them.
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Rotarman
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by Rotarman » Wed May 16, 2018 6:55 am

Think about the cost to buy an equivalent car. If the car is worth 3k (repaired) and the repair is 1k, could you get a more reliable car for 2,000? I wouldn't hesitate to throw a thousand into a car we own worth ~2k because I'm very confident I couldn't get a comparably reliable car for 1k.

goodlifer
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by goodlifer » Wed May 16, 2018 9:35 am

If I really liked the car, I wouldn't bother calculating anything. I would just get the car fixed. If it was just another vehicle to me, I sell it when the cost to fix is more than the car is worth, even if it is just new tires. I figure $1,000 is about 4 months of car payments for me and then account for several years of cost-free repairs under the warranty.

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dratkinson
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Re: Ratio of car repair cost to car's value?

Post by dratkinson » Wed May 16, 2018 10:53 am

goodlifer wrote:
Wed May 16, 2018 9:35 am
If I really liked the car, I wouldn't bother calculating anything. I would just get the car fixed. If it was just another vehicle to me, I sell it when the cost to fix is more than the car is worth, even if it is just new tires. I figure $1,000 is about 4 months of car payments for me and then account for several years of cost-free repairs under the warranty.
+1 If you like the car and the repair is for expected wear items, restores full vehicle capability and avoids car payments, then that's a good deal.


Disclosure. I've looked but can't find anything that I like better than my 1990 Montero. So during 2016-17, I spent more than blue book to have dealer fix its multiple worn items. It now drives like factory new so should outlast me.

It's due a timing belt and water pump in 50K miles. If I still haven't found anything I like better, then I'll continue to repair it.
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