Are you the type who drives your car forever? Or do you tend to replace your car shortly after it’s paid off?
I’ve been a tad down this week because I had to spend a mostly unexpected $850 on my car. But I’m trying to look on the bright side because I’m the type who drives cars forever, and I hope to get many more years out of my Kia Soul. I bought it in 2016 (my first new car!) and finished paying it off in 2020. I tend to bike shorter distances, so it still only has about 34,000 miles on it. I’m hoping to drive it for at least another five years.
My first car was a used green Corolla that I drove for 10 years. I got it to around 217K miles before I had to sell it for scrap metal. At that point, it was breaking down constantly, you couldn’t open either door on the passenger side, and my mechanic told me it was a fire hazard.
I definitely don’t ever plan to keep a car for that long again. My new rule is that my car doesn’t have to be pretty to look at, but if it gets to a point where my car is a constant stressor, it’s time to move on.
Spending an extra $850 is never fun, but I’m trying to look at it as an investment that will hopefully keep me car payment-free for many years to come.
How about you? Do you make your cars last forever? What’s your record?
We have a 2006 Scion Xb. We bought it new. It was our daily driver until 2019 when we bought a Honda Odyssey. We put $1500 into it at 110,000 miles. We only use the Scion for emergencies. It has only 130,000 on it now. Best car we have ever owned!
I too am a long-hauler car owner. My current car is 17 years old, and I got an estimate at the end of April for complete repairs totaling $5K, significantly more than my car’s worth. As much as I hate to do it, I’ll try to hold on until the Fall and maybe look at a new used car. OR, I may just patch it up as I go along. Decisions, decisions. My car before this one, well truck actually, also lasted 17 years. You’ve only got 34K miles on your car…that’s still a baby. That $850 repair was probably well worth it, @dear.penny.
We’ve been spending way too much of our budget on cars the past two years and it’s not at all where I wish to prioritize my money. Like you, I much prefer having a paid off car and although the plan is to have a car for a long time we’ve had a string of bad luck with our 2016 Honda Odyssey and at 130k it’s already showing signs of needing replacement. The plan was to keep repairing it to drive it to 250k at least but after a deer ran into it its not been driving the same. $850 for a repair isn’t too bad, that’s only like 2 or 3 car payments if you think about it like that.
Hi Penny I kept my Kia Optima for 12 years I brought it new it had 60.000 miles things stared to break down so my son said trade it in and get a brand new one and that would be it. Because I’m 73 and I put low mileage so I’m driving a 2022 Kia Forte my last car
I tend to keep cars until they are falling apart and it is safter and makes sense financially for me to turn them in.
My former car was a 2012 Focus and that car had transmission issues! The manufacturer replaced it twice, and the third time would not pay, and I wouldn’t pay since it was obvious it would happen again, so I purchased a new Trailblazer. My first new car. I always buy used and would buy used again. The vehicle is GREAT and it was during a time when used was almost as expensive as new.
But my plan is to drive this till it’s not practical to maintain and then get a used convertible again, since I wont have to worry about fitting kids in my car! I used to drive used VWs and Jeeps. My highest milage car was an old VW Cabrio that died on the highway on a cross country trip. It had over 200K miles on it. I left it there.
I’ve had my Acura ILX 2015 for eight years. I bought it used with only 4000 miles as it was a loaner car at the dealership. I paid it off in five years. I had my previous car, Toyota Celica 2000, for 18 years. I wanted to sell it, but my parents wanted to keep it so it now sits on their driveway. I’d love to get an SUV, but I don’t want a new car payment right now.
I’ve tried to find a balance between keeping it as long as I can and getting rid of it before it becomes too expensive to maintain. I had a 2005 Subaru for about 11 years, but I learned my lesson the hard way because the alternator broke and that cost around $1,200 to replace, but then more things kept breaking. I ended up needing to get a new car, but I wish I had just put the $2,000 in repairs toward buying a new car. So I would keep the car until it seems like there might be some more serious maintenance up ahead.
I have numerous cars, but the longest I have owned one is 36 years and counting. It is a 1977 Jeep J10 truck. I got it after my Blazer was T boned by a state plow in PA. My wife called to tell me she was in labor during a huge blizzard. Fortunately my relief showed up at the museum (Brandywine River Museum, Chadds Ford, PA.) for me to rush home. My wife was afraid to go by ambulance in the snow storm, I was the only person on the road at mid-night in that kind of weather 35" tires and four wheel drive can be a real blessing, at time. The snow plow driver was just starting out. Rather than wait two minutes, he came rolling off the hill and couldn’t stop. He hit me in the drivers door, driving me sideways driving me 30’ feet over an embankment. State plows are BIG! After a few kicks, I got the door open and checked on the driver. He said he was O’K. I told him if I had the time, I would pull him out and beat him for being so stupid, but since my wife was in labor, I just didn’t have the time. I got home and my wife told me the labor pains had stopped. She put on a burger for my dinner. Before my first bite, she let out a big moan! Ten minutes later, we dropped my daughter at her grandparents and away we went!My wife didn’t want to go to the local hospital, she wanted to go to the one in the next town over. Rather than argue, I just took her. We passed a state trooper doing about sixty. My wife was afraid we would get pulled over but I’m pretty sure he was stuck in the snow. Over a foot on the ground by then. We arrived at the hospital just as my wife’s water broke. My son was born thirty minutes later.
My son was born with problems with his lungs. He had to be transferred to a hospital in Delaware. I escorted and broke ground to bring in a special ambulance in from Philadelphia. It was equipped with an incubator, a doctor, and two nurses. I broke snow, over thirty inches all the way to Christiana, Delaware. For the next week, I was on the road from Delaware, where my son was in a Neo-natal intensive care, PA, where I wouldn’t let the release my wife. and Maryland where I was staying between trips . The following week I brought my family home in a car a borrowed from my mother. I never did return it. I bought the Jeep truick the following week, My son turned 36 last Febuary. Now that I am retired, I will be restoring the Jeep later this year. I think I will keep it a little longer!