Ten Signs That It's Time To Buy A New Car

By

Automotive Editor

 

Kevin Schweitzer is a Las Vegas-based freelancer who has written about cars for the Chicago Tribune and Cars.com, among others. He's owned a number of interesting cars, including a Saab convertible and a 20-plus-year-old BMW with a German-language dashboard. The car he's always wanted to own is a third-generation Corvette. In his free time he likes to ride his bike (and always shares the road, whether riding or driving).

 

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, Automotive Editor - October 29, 2014

Sometimes a car is just getting old; sometimes it just doesn’t meet your needs anymore. There are lots of good reasons people wind up in the market for a new car; these are the signs that you’re heading there yourself.

  1. Repair costs are more than the car's value. A lot of people hang onto a beloved long-term car that served them well. If you’re spending more than a new-car payment at the mechanic’s shop every month, though, you might have kept yours a little too long.

  2. Your life changed. Maybe you got a new job with a longer commute, or maybe you just had a baby. Sometimes, you have to trade in your sporty ride for something more practical.

  3. You want better mileage. Sometimes you don’t realize how aggravating a high fuel bill is until you experience it first-hand. There’s really only one solution: Buy a higher-mileage car.

  4. You need to lower your insurance or other costs of ownership. You thought you could afford your aspirational vehicle, but the ancillary costs are getting to you. Don’t fret -- it happens to a lot of people. But do go down to a dealer and get something more practical.

  5. The engine block cracks. This will be a major expense, and it won’t stop. Your car’s structural integrity is now questionable, which means more major repair bills down the road.

  6. The car is so old parts are hard to find. There are a number of issues here. Expensive repairs and safety concerns are two biggies.

  7. The doors won't close, the trunk won't open, and the horn won't stop. This one might sound a little facetious, but some people hold onto their car until everything around the engine and transmission is falling off. Even if the drivetrain has some life left, you also have to think about quality of life -- for you and your passengers.

  8. It regularly spews visible smoke from the exhaust pipe. Maybe it can be fixed, but especially if you have a lot of miles, do yourself and the rest of us a favor by getting that pollution-mobile off the road.

  9. You don’t trust it. Do you refuse to drive at highway speeds because too many things can go wrong? Do you have a “process” for engaging the brakes? These are telltale signs you know deep down that the car is no longer safe.

  10. You’ve been yearning for something new. Sometimes you just know when it’s time. If your old car no longer makes you happy, don’t ignore those feelings.

Start searching for a new car here »

, Automotive Editor

 

Kevin Schweitzer is a Las Vegas-based freelancer who has written about cars for the Chicago Tribune and Cars.com, among others. He's owned a number of interesting cars, including a Saab convertible and a 20-plus-year-old BMW with a German-language dashboard. The car he's always wanted to own is a third-generation Corvette. In his free time he likes to ride his bike (and always shares the road, whether riding or driving).

 

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