Fix or Replace ??

I miss my old Chevy Lumina. ( '92, 2-door ) What a great road car, and pretty much trouble-free.
But, at 90k miles, it seems I got a failure-a-month.
Oil leaks, alternator, air-conditioner, fuel injector all failed within months of each other.
The final straw came when the trannie lock-up failed. I probably would have had it repaired if I knew it'd be "the last major repair".
Instead, I chickened out, and replaced the car. Maybe too soon ?
How do you measure when "enough is enough" ?
<rj>
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My first alternator just went on my GP at ~91k miles. It's leaking oil but from the O-Seal and the AC lost its charge but I got that taken care of. My dad had a 92 Lumina and the thing lasted till 125k+ miles (he got rid of it) and it was still running strong last we heard with ~200k miles on it now.
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I had cars for 25 years now. My experience is: if you drive the car to go to work, or otherwise depend on it on a daily basis, I seriously consider replacing a vehicule when it reaches 8 years old. If you are retired or the like, then keep it 15 years if it goes that far!
Daniel
98 MAX and 2002 Odyssey
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Id like to add:
very good rule of thumb to draw the line at 1500 to 2000 $ per year repair and maintenance! Pass that line, your car is being fixed every other week. Very unreliable. Learn from my mistakes.
Besides, I estimate the depreciation of a decent 3 -4 year old car to be about 1500 $ per year, to which you add another 1000$ per year in maintenance, for a total cost not so higher than the high risk bet that your maintenance cost on a 10 year old car will be less than 2500 $ a year.
On my Caravan (bought new in 1992), in 2001, since it only had 100 000 milles, I decided to stretch it another year. Here is what I spent that year:
brake lines and gas tank 455$ rear bearings, rear brakes and drums, nuffler: 996$ radiator, serpentine belt; 625$ alternator: 350$ front rotors and pads: 165$ caliper, engine mount: 250$ tranny: 3500$ other: 500$
(all canadian $ )
this is on top of the downtime, time lost at garages, wifes NB's about the car, etc. Learn from my mistake!

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Of course...you bought a Dodge...what were you thinking!!!

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RJ,
A lot can depend on whether or not to continue fixing a car or replacing it.
1. Overall Appearance 2. Smashes, Rust or Rust through. 3. Interior Condition 4. Any Minor or Major Accidents 5. How Many Owners 6. Driver Neglect / Abuse 7. Stolen Vehicle.
I was in your situation in September of 1990 when I had my 78 Olds 88. Every two weeks something was going wrong with the car. Water Pump, Brakes, Alternator ( 3 in 3 months ) Battery, Rocker Arms, Tire wear, etc..........
As much as I loved the car, it was beginning to rack up alot of bills. It was nearing 190,000 and around that time I had joined a few clubs and was going to be running up some heavy duty miles in the next few years traveling with the groups and need a car I could rely on, one I didn't have to work on every Thursday to be sure I could go away Friday night.
The car was in great shape, no rust, perfect interior, clean and a big RWD 2 door, with a 350 V8.
In the case of my car I had one wreck, hit a new Omni Dodge and jumped the curb with all for wheels. I think I twisted the frame at that point.
The car was also stolen 3 months after I bought it. I think the thieves did more frame damage and who knows what else. Alot of the cars troubles afterwards were directly related to it being stolen.
Transmission died 4 months later.
Radiator - Upper Hose connector leaks at tank, from Battery being dropped on it.
Scrapping sounds in front end - Two Broken Coil Springs !!
Just how the hell do you have to drive to break the coil Springs?
So, I decided to buy a new car and in February of 1991 I bought the car mentioned below my signature.
This car still runs great, looks good except for some of the haze cracks in the paint, and a couple rust spots I'm touching up. The interior is great shape, but the driver seat is getting a little uncomfortable at times.
The difference between this car & the 78 Olds is I know the complete history of this one, being I'm the only owner. It was never in a major wreck, just two bumper taps, and it was never stolen.
I'm at that point I was at in 1990 - do I keep this one or get a new one ? Right now I'd have to say I'm going to keep this one for awhile. I'm not really at the point of throwing money into it every month. Its still a dependable car.
The things I've replaced are routine maintenance items or wear items associated with driving. It doesn't have runnabilty problems, starting problems, electrical problems or any leaks of any kind and it doesn't burn oil. Never been towed.
Everything works on the car except the trip meter. There is one rust hole that is in the most bizarre spot, the drivers side door jamb, 4 inches above the upper door hinge.
I can take this car to Pennsylvania ( this Friday ) or Florida ( November ) without any worries. Last year I put on exactly 34,000 miles. This year will be more like 26,000
Good Luck with your new car.
========Harryface ======== 1991 Pontiac Bonneville LE ~_~_~267,300 miles_~_~_
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If you got the know how, and good tools, you can replace the lockup solenoid yourself. The part is not that costly.....it is the labor that kills people. If you plan on keeping the car, get the repair manual for the car, and see just how much you are willing to take on by yourself.

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