This is a problem many people are facing nowadays: fix the used car, or sell/trade it in for the purchase of a newer vehicle? This greatly depends on a few important factors that must be considered first.
Depending on how badly damaged the car is, and how much parts and labor will be to fix it through a mechanic, it could be worth fixing the car. If the car is a newer model, say 2012 compared to 1998, then it would be worth fixing if it was a side panel or rear bumper that needed to be replaced. Depending on how much the labor fees would be at a mechanic, even engine repairs and transmission replacements will be worth it.
Typically, the cost of repairs on a car will be less than purchasing a new car or a newer used car and making monthly payments. There are some circumstances that the case will not be like that though, especially if routine maintenance has been neglected or depending on environmental factors like regions that use a lot of salt on roads during winters.
If the car is just a few years old, then it can be well worth it to repair the damages and replace parts as needed like belts, spark plugs, and other easily worn out and damaged parts. Even if the vehicle is older than 10 years, it can be worth it to repair rather than replace if larger parts get damaged like alternators, axels, and head gaskets. As long as the repairs don’t surpass how much you’d pay within a year on monthly payments for a newer car then it is best to make repairs.
So, now we’re down to the numbers. The cost of repairs versus the yearly cost of buying a new vehicle should be the biggest deciding factor here. If the repairs will cost you more than one year’s worth of monthly payments for a new or pre-owned vehicle then you should consider replacing your car, especially if it continues to have major problems every year that are costly.
The fact is that there are manufacturers that don’t always use the best materials for making vehicles, or the parts they buy and use are of cheaper materials- which usually results in parts getting worn out more quickly. If the model has a particularly bad reputation for needing repairs frequently, then it is best to move on to a newer, and better-made vehicle.
All vehicles will need routine maintenance and repairs as parts get worn down with use and time, so repairs are just part of owning a car or truck. While some repairs are easier, and can even be done yourself if you’ve got the time, tools, and know-how, others will require more intimate knowledge and much more expensive tools like for replacing an engine or transmission.