Thinking it may be time to part ways with your beloved car? It’s not an easy decision to make but delaying it for too long can prove both dangerous and costly.
Here are five signs* that it may be time to move on to a new ride.
1. The repair costs more than the car
It might seem obvious, but mounting repairs are the first sign that you may need a new set of wheels. The frequent fixes that older vehicles require can easily outstrip the value of the entire car. Next time a warning light blinks on your dashboard, have a quick check online or with a secondhand dealer to see how much your car is actually worth. That way, you'll know whether or not a repair actually makes sense in the greater scheme of things, and you can avoid the common pitfall of pouring cash into an investment that will never provide a return.
2. Keeping the car will cost you more in the long run
Sit down and calculate just how much your car might cost over the next year or two. It's certainly tempting to try and eek as much time as possible out of an older car, but once you've factored in car insurance rates and increased maintenance, you may find that it's worth more to sell now while the car still has some value.
3. Car parts are hard to find
Even the simplest of quick fixes like a dead light bulb can be a nightmare if you can't find the part, especially when this results in hugely inflated prices. If simple parts like lightbulbs cost two or three times as much as newer ones, then how much will a new transmission set you back? It's also worth noting that a scarcity of components can have a substantial effect on the resale value of a car, as potential buyers will be looking at how much it may cost them to keep the wheels spinning.
4. Your car is guzzling fuel
It's a simple and well-known fact that as a car reaches its twilight years, there will be a marked increase in how much fuel it consumes. Not only will this be costing you extra money, but it can also be a sign of problems to come with the engine, which is losing its ability to properly convert petrol into energy. Next time you fill up, take note of how much time it takes before you're back at empty, and if that's far shorter than newer vehicles, it's almost certainly time for an upgrade.
5. Your car doesn't work properly
Small problems can be easy to dismiss, but what they really mean is that your vehicle is broken, plain and simple. Maybe that means the left window doesn't wind down, or that your radio only picks up the weird radio signals from a small town. Either way, when these issues start to pile up, you'll want to move on from the car before it completely loses its value.
What are your tell-tale signs for needing a new car?