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New Ride: Is It Time?
As a busy automotive shop, many people come to us for a professional opinion on their vehicle. Taking your automobile to the mechanic for diagnostics can be as scary as seeing the doctor, as you never know what’s wrong and how much it will cost. Today’s vehicles are meant to run much longer than the ones-built decades ago.
They have better engines, state of the art technology, and they are made to go far beyond 100,000 miles. Though some would argue the body styles of the older cars were sturdier, there are other things to consider. Buying a car is a massive investment, and if you want a larger SUV or van, it can be a considerable payment, like taking on another mortgage.
Today’s loans are extended beyond six years, and you need to think long and hard before you make such a decision. So how do you know when it’s time to trade in your old wheels for a new ride?
Signs It’s Time for a New Car
If you’ve ever paid off a vehicle and had the freedom of no car payment, you know how wonderful it is to be debt free. Sadly, when most automobiles are paid off, they need more parts and service due to age. Once a car’s odometer turns over 100,000 miles, there are a lot more things that you need to consider in terms of maintenance.
While you’ll always have brakes, rotors, oil changes, and essential upkeep, you must also consider the bigger picture. The more mileage you have on a vehicle, the more trouble you’ll likely have with it. You may need to replace your fuel pump, transmission, engine, timing belt/chain, and other expensive parts. Here are some signs it’s time to part with your old ride and get a new one.
1. The Cost of Repairs Is Equivalent to a Payment
While we love to see our customers at Carolina Auto Service, we know that going to the mechanic can be costly. It can add up quickly if you’re calling for service more than you like. Though you might not have a monthly payment, you might be experiencing so many mechanical issues that it makes up for it. Weigh the costs and see if it would be beneficial to have a car that’s a bit more mechanically sound, as your bank accounts are taking a hit from all the expenses.
2. It’s Not Dependable
Sitting along the side of the road when your car breaks down is frustrating and dangerous. Add battling the elements, the cost of a rental car, the tow bill, and it all becomes a massive headache. When you travel the busy roadways here in North Carolina, your vehicle must be dependable.
Even if something minor goes haywire in your engine, it can be costly when you consider towing, no way to get around, and the possible loss of wages from the incident.
3. The Vehicle’s Seen Better Days
Newer automobiles have excellent paint, superior tires, and all the latest technological advances. If you’re driving a car of some age, you might not have Bluetooth for your hands-free calling and a navigation system. While those things might seem frivolous, you won’t know how you lived without them.
When your paint job needs to be redone, the tires are lackluster, and the interior doesn’t sparkle like it once did, it’s time to consider trading up. Also, don’t forget that newer cars are more fuel efficient, which can save you significantly.
4. High Mileage
As previously stated, the more miles you get on your vehicle, the more likely you are to have issues. Sure, we’ve seen cars roll into our garage with 250,000 or more miles on them, and they’re still going. While there are a few of these superior vehicles around, it’s not always the case.
Most cars lose their transmission or engine long before reaching that 200,000 mark. Those vehicles that do get to those high mileage levels are certainly the ones whose owners have ensured they were properly maintained. Each automobile is different, and if it’s had many owners, how they took care of routine maintenance can significantly impact its longevity. So, it may be best to get a new ride when you see yours is getting more miles on it.
Getting a Professional Opinion
Maybe you’re not sure what direction to go, and you want an expert to look at your car and do an inspection. We can inspect the vehicle and give you an expert opinion on the state of the car. While we can’t advise you whether or not to go into debt and get a new car, we can give you some peace of mind about the mechanical state of your current ride. Call us today to schedule a multi-point inspection.