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Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage #4937247 11/27/18 11:01 PM
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Kurtatron Offline OP
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When I bought my used vehicle, I got it near 200k miles and with faded paint. The price was $2700. Years later I saw the same vehicle with 70k miles and with clean paint. But the price was $8000. Fast forward, I sank $3500 into the 200k vehicle I purchased due prior owner negligence. That 3.5k bought a low miles engine that has been running fine for nearly 2 years now. Other tidbits were replaced also, like engine mounts, water pump, etc.

What do you guys think is a better option? From 2 perspectives, financial and preference. Is it better to take a cheaper worn out car and use the extra money to budget repairs or spend the extra on a lower mile example? Financially, what’s better? Finances aside, which would you take?

Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937261 11/27/18 11:20 PM
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Chris142 Online Content
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There is more to it than lower miles. I would rather have a 200k car with maintenance records vs a 70k car with sludge in the engine.

With that said. My highschool years were spent buying a car with a bad engine or trans and replacing the bad part with a used one and driving that car into the ground.


02 Wrangler Napa high milage 10w40
87 F250 Valvoline 15w40
07 fjcruiser Car lube plus 10w30
Z400 castrol T 10w40
Can am Maveric edge 5w40
57 case tractor Chevron sae30
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937301 11/28/18 12:30 AM
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Linctex Offline
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I bought my 2008 F150, 8 years old with 103,000 miles

It is now 10 years old with 176,000 miles

My ONLY repair: one alternator

I think 100,000 - 200,000 is the "sweet range" to buy a used vehicle (*IF* it is clean)

I paid $8,250 and it's still worth about $6,500 today.

That's 73,000 miles of use for less than $1,800 - - it is pretty hard to beat those economics


"The evidence demands a verdict".
(Re:VOA)"it's nearly impossible to actually know the particular additives that are in there at what concentrations."
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937316 11/28/18 12:59 AM
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The most reliable and enjoyable 3 cars I've owned so far have been one owner (senior), low mileage (less than 40,000 miles), 8 to 12 years old, garage kept, and well cared for. The service records came with 2 out of 3 of them. I paid a 'premium for the year' price for them, but only about 20% or so of their original cost when new. They have all been very reliable.
Downside is that if the car is totalled, insurance doesn't care that the car was 'mint', and will just want to pay what a typical car of that year is worth (not much).
It can take quite a while (months) of scanning ads for the car you want, but the search can be kind of fun.
And of course you'll literally be driving a seniors car, which will have long since gone out of style. But I don't care, and take pride in having an older car in nice shape.


'18 Impala
'05 Park Avenue
'03 Park Avenue
'07 Honda Accord
'09 VStar 1300
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Chris142] #4937326 11/28/18 02:19 AM
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SirTanon Offline
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Originally Posted by Chris142
There is more to it than lower miles. I would rather have a 200k car with maintenance records vs a 70k car with sludge in the engine.


This, definitely. A well-maintained, high-mileage car, especially with records, and a seller who can tell you all about it, is absolutely a great choice. My Fusion may have 265,000 miles, but it looks great, and if I were to sell it today, whoever were to buy it would be getting a great car with plenty of longevity.

On the other side of the coin, I used to have an '89 Hyundai Excel years ago that was just a mess with only about 130,000 miles.


2013 Nissan Altima SV - 2.5 liter/CVT - 119,000mi
2014 Nissan Altima SL - 2.5 liter/CVT - 67,500mi
2010 Ford Fusion - 274,600mi
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937399 11/28/18 07:27 AM
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Clean high mileage and well maintained is the ticket to saving the money. The most important factor is buy the correct dependable brand of vehicle to start with. A Toyota Corolla or a Honda Civic is going to be a way better risk than buying a vehicle that is prone to problems. I am not going to name any brands but there are a lot of them out there that are shakier than a Shakey's Pizza. LOL.


2005 Chevrolet Corvette
2014 Ford F-150 4x4 supercrew
2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited (wifes)
2012 Honda Civic 4 door (my daily driver)
2007 Lund Tyee Grand Sport Mercury 115HP 9.8HP
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937437 11/28/18 08:17 AM
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supton Offline
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I think it's the luck of the draw. A vehicle with great records could have everything worn out on it all the same. And a vehicle with no records and lots of wear might refuse to quit.

I'm not sure how many examples you'd have to measure to get past anecdotal evidence--10? 100? Otherwise we're all just talking about our one or two examples and then trying to make rules out of them.

My last used car came with a couple of receipts for oil changes, tires and other bits. Not a complete stack. It motors on and doesn't care.

I also think there is a bit of luck involved in keeping said car from getting wrecked due to someone else's driving.

Anyhow. As a general rule of thumb, I'd rather save the money and go more worn, if only because things can fail at random--I'd hate to spend all my budget to get a great vehicle then have the trans drop out. But that's just a rule of thumb--I might elect to spend as much as possible up front, depending upon the exact case. It does work for some people, after all (Murphy's law isn't exact, sometimes you can actually get ahead--for a bit). But I'm not saying I'd buy a $100 vehicle and then drop engine, trans, etc only because I have a huge budget. I think I'd rather do my shopping on the basis of cost of potential repairs. Is the trans expensive or cheap to repair? Are junkyard motors common? Is there are a part which is NLA?


2011 Toyota Camry, base, 2.5L/6MT, 189k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra DC, 4.6L/6AT, 153k, ours
1999 Toyota Camry LE, 2.2L/4AT, 211k, his
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: carviewsonic] #4937441 11/28/18 08:22 AM
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bullwinkle Offline
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Originally Posted by carviewsonic
The most reliable and enjoyable 3 cars I've owned so far have been one owner (senior), low mileage (less than 40,000 miles), 8 to 12 years old, garage kept, and well cared for. The service records came with 2 out of 3 of them. I paid a 'premium for the year' price for them, but only about 20% or so of their original cost when new. They have all been very reliable.
Downside is that if the car is totalled, insurance doesn't care that the car was 'mint', and will just want to pay what a typical car of that year is worth (not much).
It can take quite a while (months) of scanning ads for the car you want, but the search can be kind of fun.
And of course you'll literally be driving a seniors car, which will have long since gone out of style. But I don't care, and take pride in having an older car in nice shape.
Sounds like my MGM! I'm not as young as I used to be (54), but I don't care if people think it is a grandpa car or not, plus it will likely last until I am a grandpa!


06 Ram 3500 CTD 4X4(FG Venturi), 93 GMC C3500 6.2, 89 F-450 7.3, 98 XJ 4.0(XG8A), 05 xB(XG3600), 18 Transit 3.7, 03 Merc Grand Marquis 4.6 2V(XG2)
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937455 11/28/18 08:45 AM
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CourierDriver Offline
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check out Dave Ramsey talks on buying used cars on youtube,,,he has some good points,,,may tick you off though...



800,000 folks die each year from congestive heart failure..
If guns are dangerous, then pencils cause bad grades..
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937463 11/28/18 08:55 AM
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My sister has a Lincoln Town Car with less than 10k miles on it. She had the dealer she bought it from service it 2 times each year until these last 2 years. It has been garaged its entire life. It drives and rides like a dream as you would expect. Wife wants to buy it from her and use it as her car. Only thing I know wrong with it is that it has a broken mirror on the passenger side that she snagged on something. Even my lawyer wants to buy it. It is 2005 model and has the leather interior that is like new also. Sister had her license jerked by state of Illinois so now it sees no miles unless I take her for groceries in it. These kind of cars in this condition are getting very hard to find in an age where every car has high mileage. I know my own truck now has 205K and runs like new.


Don't waste your time on a slipshod repair.
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937509 11/28/18 09:48 AM
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IMO the environment means just as much as maintenance, etc. I plan on buying a high(er) mileage SUV from the south. Like Oklahoma or Texas. I wouldn't buy that same vehicle if it resided here in NH. Too much time in the salt. Majority around here wont pass inspection for rust issues over 200k. Too hard to work on.


06 Escalade 6.0L LQ9 AWD 170k M1 5w30
03 Maxima 3.5L 170k ST HM 10w30
05 Malibu Classic 2.2 111k M1 5w30
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937564 11/28/18 10:32 AM
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June of 2017 we purchased a 2006 Buick Lacrosse 3.8l with ~ 37,000 miles . Gave $ 6250 out the door . I would say it was / is in about 90 - 955 condition .

Tires 50% or better , brakes seem good . I replaced the infamous 3.8l plastic coolant elbows , tstat , heater & radiator hoses + added a gallon of 100% coolant . Dealer changed the oil before we took delivery . I vacuumed 4 quarts of Dexron 6 from the tranny & replaced with new synthetic .

Used a turkey basted on the brake and PS fluid .

So far , have not put enough miles on it for 2nd oil change ( 3000 mile OCI ) . We have been very pleased with it . Largely use it for a road car .

Gets 26 - 27 MPG or better on the road .

A/C & heater work .

We have been quite happy with it .


Wyr
God bless
Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937576 11/28/18 10:41 AM
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brages Offline
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I have bought a few higher mileage vehicles (125k, 175k, 195k)... all have been great for me. If I had needed to replace the engine on any of them, I would not have felt like it was a good deal.

Generally, you get what you pay for... make sure what you are paying for is what is important to you... (comfort, style, status, peace of mind, performance, etc)

Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: Kurtatron] #4937642 11/28/18 11:40 AM
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Kurtatron Offline OP
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I know that it is a bigger risk when buying a higher miles car, in terms of break downs. Considering equal maintenance regiments, I think it’s usually better to get the cheaper car even with larger risk of headache, at least from a financial point. I have heard that saying that it is usually cheaper to fix than replace. Does that apply to buying older used vehicles also? Better to get a $2000 Camry with 200k miles than a $5000 Camry with 100k miles?

Re: Used car purchasing: repairs vs mileage [Re: CourierDriver] #4937649 11/28/18 11:42 AM
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Kurtatron Offline OP
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Originally Posted by CourierDriver
check out Dave Ramsey talks on buying used cars on youtube,,,he has some good points,,,may tick you off though...


What does he budget for cars? 20% of annual salary cash only?

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