Archive for September, 2020

Is it time to replace my vehicle?

This is a question we get asked a lot. In response, here are a few things to consider:

  1. Does my current vehicle suit my needs and fit my lifestyle?
    If not, then the answer is yes. If it does, it may make sense to invest some money in it to keep it on the road longer.
  2. Are you going to buy a new or pre-owned vehicle?
    Often the sales tax alone will exceed the price of the repairs needed on your current vehicle. Then, compound the cost of registration, down payment, insurance and depreciation and we get further into trouble. Pre-owned vehicles usually only give you a two-year reprieve from repairs at best.
  3. What is my current vehicle actually worth? What is it worth to me?
    Another way of looking at the situation is the idea of buying miles. Breaking down the cost of repairs by the number of miles we can get out of the vehicle can often justify the costs. This is especially helpful when your car has little market value, meaning, the amount of money you can net from a private party sale or trade-in at the dealership relative to the cost of repairs needed. I also like to take a look at the total dollar amount of the repairs and ask myself if I could buy a better car for that amount of money?
  4. Am I making an informed decision? Or am I buying someone else’s headache?
    We’re familiar with our vehicles even if there is a list of repairs that need attention. That’s worth something. The worst part about buying a used vehicle is that you’re taking a gamble on whether or not you have to start repairing it.
  5. Am I throwing $50,000 at a $5000 problem?
    That’s a good question. Buying a new vehicle rarely makes good financial sense. Vehicles are a bad investment, but necessary to have. Let us help you decide which options are best for you and your family.

If you have more questions than answers, please call to schedule a consultation with us. We can perform our comprehensive 59-point safety and maintenance inspection, then sit down and have an objective conversation about whether you should keep your car or replace it.

If it is indeed time to replace your vehicle you can buy with confidence once we’ve performed a pre-purchase inspection on your next vehicle.

Here are some of the benefits of performing a pre-purchase inspection:

  1. Negotiating power. If the prospective vehicle needs service and or repairs, it’s a great way to negotiate the price or the repairs before you make the purchase. We tend to see customers buying the car first and then finding out it needs extensive work.
  2. A lot of times used vehicles look better on the outside than they do on the inside. There are many vehicle components that wear gradually and can go undetected on a test drive.
  3. Accidents and structural damage don’t always show up on a Carfax report. Repairs can be made at shops that don’t report to Carfax. Be an informed buyer by insisting on a pre-purchase inspection before you complete the transaction.

Our pre-purchase inspection is regularly priced at $189. Through September and October we’re offering this service for $139. You save $50!

Air quality: Your health and your filters

Over the past few weeks, we have been seeing a lot of very dirty engine air filters and cabin air filters due to the poor air quality from the devastating wildfires burning here in California and the west coast.

Typically, in normal conditions, engine air filters can be in service for 30,000 to 40,000 miles in our particular climate. In severe conditions like we’ve been experiencing lately, they will need to be serviced much sooner than that.

In some cases, engine air filters can even cause poor engine performance due to the fine particles in smoke that can get past the air filter element and affect the sensitive electronics that meter the air coming into the engine. Some of the symptoms you may notice are lack of power, hesitation or misfiring, or your Check Engine light may come on. Please give us a call right away if you experience any of these problems with your vehicle. It could be an easy fix!

The main function of the cabin filter is to clean the air entering your vehicle while your heater and air conditioning is in operation or the fresh air vents are open. The fine particles that get through the cabin filter are also known to cause health problems, especially in people with allergies or asthma. We can replace your cabin air filter and sanitize the ductwork in your vehicle’s HVAC system all within a couple of hours.

It only takes a few minutes to inspect these filters and we are more than happy to offer a complimentary inspection while you wait. Please just give us a call to let us know you’re on your way.