7 Signs it's Time to Replace Your Car

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Megan Foukes is a recent graduate from Indiana University who graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism. Megan works as a content writer for Auto Credit Express and contributes to several automotive and finance blogs.

, - October 31, 2018

Just like us, our cars age and change with the times. We tend to outgrow the clunker vehicles we once loved, and although they can be tough to give up, sometimes it’s necessary to replace our cars.

The 7 Deadly Signs: Is It Time To Replace My Car?

Whether your vehicle is old, doesn’t fit your current needs, or you’re simply ready to move on to something newer, not every reason to replace your car is due to a repair. But, there are some signs you should be aware of:

  1. High mileage – While most vehicles are built to last over 100,000 miles, some older or less reliable cars just can’t be pushed that far. In addition, if you want to trade in your vehicle with over 100,000 miles on the odometer, you may find its resale value to be much lower.
  2. Wear and tear – Exterior and interior wear and tear can range from something as small as a stain to something as large as a rusting frame or body damage. Sometimes buffing and cleaning won’t do much good – especially if parts of your car have rusted away. If this is the case, and looks matter to you or it’s affecting your vehicle’s functionality, it may be time to get rid of it.
  3. Expensive repairs – If your car needs major work, such as a clutch replacement or transmission repair, it might be time to let go of it. It isn’t worth keeping an old vehicle that needs major repairs costing just as much as the value of the car, itself. It can also be a sign that the vehicle may need additional repair work in the near future, meaning you could spend a lot more money than you’d like just to keep a 10-year-old vehicle running.
  4. Doesn’t fit your current needs – Your two-seater may have worked when you were single, or that big SUV may have been great for hauling the family around, but things change. If your household has increased or decreased, or you switched locations, you may want to consider trading it in for something that better fits your current needs.
  5. Technology is out of date – If your clunker was built in the early 2000s, chances are its technology is way out of date compared to the current crop of vehicles. Models made after May 2018 are required to have rearview cameras, and soon we could see more advanced technologies required for new cars. Some technologies in older vehicles aren’t worth the cost to fix or replace, and if you want rearview cameras or Bluetooth connectivity, you should upgrade your car.
  6. Doesn’t feel safe anymore – If your vehicle has suffered major damage, its safety capability is more than likely diminished. Advanced safety technologies have proven to help keep drivers safer, so if you don’t feel comfortable driving around in your current car and fear an accident, it’s time to trade it or sell it.
  7. You simply want a new vehicle – If you’re tired of your car – even if it isn’t that old or doesn't have major problems – and you just want a newer vehicle, there’s nothing wrong with replacing it. Make sure you have the budget to finance a new vehicle, and plan accordingly before you head to a dealership.

Ready to Replace Your Car?

You can use our New and Used Car Guides to research and compare different vehicles if you’re unsure of what you might want, or are simply curious about a certain model. CarsDirect’s pricing analysts are always examining new car deals and offers, or, if you’re considering leasing, their monthly compilation of the best lease deals can save you hundreds.

Once you feel ready to buy a new or used vehicle, CarsDirect wants to help get you started on the financing journey. We work with a nationwide network of dealers that have the lending resources available to help people in many different credit situations. To see what we can do for you, fill out our online car loan request form, and we'll get right to work matching you with a dealership.

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Megan Foukes is a recent graduate from Indiana University who graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism. Megan works as a content writer for Auto Credit Express and contributes to several automotive and finance blogs.

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