skip to Main Content

Media post: When it’s time to ditch the old car

Rusty beetle. Picture courtesy

Most of the time when an old car needs repair, you just bring it to your local dealer and simply have it done. However, there are times when perhaps it’s best to part with your old friend. Sure, a good mechanic can repair just about anything but sometimes it’s not worth the expense involved because either it will cost too much or you may be left with a “poor investment”. Here’s a few good examples:

1 Excessive rust

There’s “surface rust” and then there’s “rust perforation.” If your old car has some surface rust starting to show, a good body repairman can sand off the rust and paint it as good as new. Rust perforation is a different affair. When there are holes in your car’s body, they need to be filled, generally with a patch panel. This sort of repair when done right will last a while but not usually a real long time. Cars with rusty holes in them are good candidates to sell or trade.

2 Noisy engines

Today’s engines run pretty quiet. It’s not like the old days when you could hear valve trains clicking away and making general rattling noises. That being said, Holt Chrysler suggests that if your old car seems to have a noisy engine, it might be time for a trade. OK, sometimes engine noise is just a valve train adjustment, which isn’t a terribly expensive affair but other times its piston slap, rod knock and other stuff that means a complete overhaul is necessary.

3 Bent frames

If your car gets hit hard enough by another vehicle or you plow into something at speed, chances are that the frame of the car is going to get bent. Sure, you could take it to a body specialist and get it straightened but, face it, it has been compromised and weakened by the strain that was placed on it during the accident.

4 Electrical problems

Some cars as they age just simply start to develop electrical problems. The bottom line is that some manufacturers just simply do wiring better than others. The problem is that when wiring starts to go, it can be devilishly hard to troubleshoot and repair. Be careful if you find yourself chasing multiple electrical problems in a car you own. The money can add up fast and, in many cases, the problems reappear!

5 Blown head gaskets

The head gasket is the gasket that separates the “head” of an engine from the engine block. For a variety of reasons, head gaskets can leak and while this usually isn’t a major problem, sometimes it can be. Sometimes when a head gasket leaks, the engine overheats. Unfortunately, when this happens it can “warp” the head (which is aluminum and can warp easily) and this is a very expensive repair. In fact, some mechanics just junk the old engine and try and find a fresh, low mileage one to replace it.

Leave a Reply

Back To Top