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Why it Pays to Extend the Life of your Car

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On: Wed, Apr 14, 2010 at 5:52PM | By: Benjamin Roussey

Why it Pays to Extend the Life of your Car

One of the reasons many Americans are having financial difficulty is because they spend more money than they make, which seems to be a current American practice. One way to save money is to extend the life of your car. A noble goal is to drive your vehicle until it reaches the 250,000 mile plateau. You may think this is impossible, but since cars today are built after rigorous testing, it is quite plausible.

With normal maintenance, it is feasible for you push your car past the 200,000 mile mark. The average car reaches 145,000 miles after about 13 years before it is discarded for scrap, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. In 2009, derived from R.L. Polk, the average age of cars in operation in the U.S. was 10.2 years old.

It makes total economic sense to keep a car past a certain lifetime. In the book “Deal with Your Debt”, written by Liz Weston, owning a car for a decade rather than 5 could save you more than $250,000 over the course of a lifetime. There are some phenomenal reasons to keep the same car around; some are:

· Less automobile payments. Most car loans are about 4 – 5 years. Every month you drive that car after that without making a payment is extra savings and pocket money. The higher maintenance fees do not exceed the consistent monthly payments it requires to be financing a new or newer vehicle. For instance, even if you need to replace an expensive item for your vehicle, like a new transmission, monthly fees on this are usually less than $100 until it is paid off.

· Enticing insurance costs. Older cars usually have smaller insurance fees. In addition, when your car reaches a certain age you can drop your collision and comprehensive insurance since your premium is higher than 10% of the vehicle’s fair market value. This means your monthly insurance costs could dip to a paltry $30 or less.

· Plenty of time to tuck away money for your next car. One of the things you can do after your car is paid off is to save up for your next purchase. Your next car purchase could then be entirely swallowed with one payment. Then you will not have to deal with any loan payments or financing at all.

The main way to sustain the wonderful life of your car is to follow the maintenance schedule. You should keep this in your glove department and after an oil change or tire rotation, mark the date and mileage down in this manual. This information should be recorded the same day the maintenance is completed. In the long run, this will save you thousands of dollars in repairs.



RoadKill | 7:52PM (Wed, Apr 14, 2010)

As long as the car is maintained that is the key...I like not having car payments...more money for toys....


imwithcoco | 2:36PM (Thu, Apr 15, 2010)

My 2003 Explorer has 279,000 miles on it... knock on wood. @Roadkill... Toys are nice but making my house payment is even better ;-)

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