Category: Car Tips

New Vs Old From A Mechanics Perspective

The most important and common question that arises whenever people want to buy cars is whether to go for new or used ones. As a mechanic, I have learned that each has its own advantages over the other, and the choice should be based on these. There are those I would recommend a new car to and those I would recommend a used one to. Either way, they both get value for what they offer. Below are a few points to contrast used car and new cars whenever I want to by a vehicle.

Advantages of a new car
Every new car has with it a comprehensive warranty that comes in handy during repairs and maintenance. This can be spread out between three to four years or 36,000 to 48,000 miles, whichever comes first, depending on the model. New cars enable the user to access some of the latest technological advancements available. They come with features and options that you cannot get in used cars. The best part is, I never get to worry about previous wears, bodily damages and mechanical problems since it is a new car and I am the first to own it.

Disadvantages of a new car
The most obvious disadvantage of a new car is the price; this is definitely higher than that of a used car. The moment a new car is driven out of a dealer’s lot, it suffers instant depreciation. Trying to sell a new car immediately after it leaves the showroom calls for at least 15 percent depreciation. The longer it is used, the more it depreciates due to tear and wear, even if its old parts are replaced with new ones. Necessary fees such as registration fees, insurance and tax are generally higher for new cars than used ones.

Advantages of a used car
The best advantage of used cars is that I get them at a price way lower than what they initially cost when they were new. Although this depends on how I negotiate, the price can never go anywhere near what it would cost when it’s a new car. In as much as the old cars depreciate in value, it is not at a fast rate as the new ones.

Disadvantages of used cars
It is harder to get financial assistances such as loans for used cars. Most institutions will not finance cars that are seven years old and above. Although I am a mechanic, warranties are still important. Private sellers do not offer warranties for used cars; dealers may issue warrantees but with limitations that would not exist in new cars. Older cars still use old technology that may be a bit of a problem to adjust to if you are of this era. They attract higher maintenance costs since some of their parts are hard to find, and generally the car will have suffered more wear and tear compared to a new one.

At the end of the day what influences the choice between a used car and a new one are factors such as the cost, the purpose I want the car for, and the cost of maintenance.

Pros And Cons of Buying Used Cars

Despite the fact that used cars are cheaper than new cars, people still have fears of them. I get a lot of questions as a mechanic regarding the advantages and disadvantages of buying used cars. People are sincerely concerned about what they will get for every penny they pay. Over the years my experience with cars has enabled me to have some knowledge of used cars, as I deal with them every now and then. Before I commit to buying a used car, these are some of the things I would consider.

Pros of buying used cars
Despite them being used, interestingly enough used cars do not depreciate at a faster rate compared to the new ones. New vehicles reduce in value the moment the first owner drives them from the dealer’s lot. If I get such a deal, I can get something of quality, at a reduced rate of at least 15 percent less than the initial price. If I decided to resell it, my depreciation rate will not be as high as what the original owner endured.

Some used dealers enable the transfer of warranties even when a resale is done. Some dealers offer default warranties for any used vehicle on their lots, and can even offer more for some nominal payment. Such deals make me more confident driving away in a used car. When it comes to fees such as insurance, tax and registration, getting a used car is better as the rates are lower compared to those of new cars.

Cons of buying used cars
Since it has been driven by at least one person previously, in most cases, it is a gamble. It is hard to know how the owner drove, whether they did regular maintenance, or kept to manufacturer’s guidelines among other things. This usually makes me go to the extent of doing inspections and following on performance records to avoid being duped. It puts me in a situation where I have to trust the dealer’s reputation.

Some dealers offer warranties, but most do not. This means I get to walk away with all the problems the cars has without anything to fall back on. Since I am a mechanic, I do my inspection before I buy. For none mechanics, I recommend you get a qualified mechanic to help you in this area.

Technologically speaking, newer cars come with advancements that older versions will never catch up on. Very old cars can mean adjusting to a technology that is way lower than what someone from this era is used to.

Pros And Cons of Buying New Cars

Among the investments people look forward to is buying a car whether for business, family or personal needs. Most people would go for a new car, but before making that choice, it is important to know a few facts so as not to get into something that might end up becoming a financial burden. Over the period I have been a mechanic, I have learned that just as used cars, new cars have their advantages and disadvantages.

Pros of a new car

One of the things I enjoy about a new car is that, when I am negotiating prices, I do not worry about the condition of the car. I do not have to do an inspection for previous wear and tear, mechanical problems or even accident history. The car offers what is displayed, hence giving me a peace of mind.

Manufacturers provide warranties as a marketing strategy to ensure that buyers have the best experience within the first few years of purchase. Most of these warranties go up to three years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. Commonly nowadays I see vehicles that come with up to ten years or 100,000 miles of warranty for engine and transmission.

Advanced technology
The world of technology is advancing at a fast rate that cars are no longer just a means of transport. Every time a new car model comes out, I hear it has something different and more advanced than the previous one.  Collision avoidance systems, lane changing warnings, Bluetooth technology among other things have take car to a whole new level they were not ten years ago.

Cons of a new car

Depreciation in value
This is by far the most outstanding of them all. Trying to sell a new car immediately after it leaves the showroom attracts at least 15 percent depreciation. Worse is by the time the loan is done the car will cost 40 percent less its original cost. This even gets worse with very expensive cars.

Insurance coverage
Insurance premiums are calculated on factors such as age of the car and the model; the newer the car, the higher the insurance will be. All dealerships demand that a new car be covered in full until the end of payment.

Return on investment
Unlike a new home or piece of land, a new car does not have the ability to bring better returns on what is invested. Land increases in value, but a car does not.

In a nutshell, I don’t just buy a car because it is brand new from the manufacturer. There are things I should consider that can help me save money that could otherwise have gone into drain.

Growing Up In The Car World

The truth is, everyone who owns a car loves it, and I do not have a problem with spending money on my car for a worthy cause. However, over the years, I have seen a number of people; including me spend extra money on unnecessary things in the name of car repairs and maintenance among other things. My experience as a mechanic has exposed me enough to know what to spend and what not to spend money on. Below are a few ways I have learned to save money over the years I have been a mechanic.

Finding the best garage in town and staying with it
Relationships built overtime ensure that a business is both beneficial to the mechanic and the car owner. Very few mechanics will rip-off their long term customers even if they had the opportunity to do so.

Over the years, my business has been able to grow majorly because of the clients I have managed to retain to for a long time. I benefit as a mechanic because I do their routine services and repairs, but they also benefit since a number of times I will do simple tasks such as rotating their tires for free. Besides that, I ensure their cars are handled with the best mechanic service, which enables them to stay away for longer without needing frequent repairs.

Walk around as you shop for different rates
As a mechanic, I encourage people to keep walking around other repair shops to ensure that the deal they get from me cannot be outmatched. I tell car owners to visit different mechanics even if they are not going for services. This will help them know how to value services they get.

Comparison of prices ensures car owners get the best deals around. This is also a way of them detecting rip-offs by rogue mechanics. Taking simple services such as diagnosis to at least two mechanics does not harm in anyway, as it works best against rip-offs.

Minor services such as diagnosis do not require one to be a mechanic
My advice to car owners is that, they need to get their own code readers, and learn how to do their own diagnosis. With technological advancement, most cars now come with an inbuilt code reader. Besides, I can perform diagnosis through my phone, which does not take one to attend an engineering class. Through this, car owners can save a lot of money and time.

There are repair and replacement services that I believe do not need the presence of a mechanic. Checking and replacing of filters, changing oil, and replacing tires are but a few of these do-it-yourself tasks. Over time, I have realized that repairs such as replacement of brakes and rotors can also be done by car owners.

Avoiding charges that duplicate
A repair situation comes in for a mechanic to perform certain replacements; they have to thoroughly inspect certain parts of the vehicle. As a mechanic, I will charge higher for this service because it has more work entailed. For instance, if I am replacing a squealing drive belt, I may need to go through the radiator horses and water pump thermostat. When charging for such services, I charge inclusive of the parts I passed through to get to the part I wanted.

For a car owner to save money on such, I would advise they negotiate the prices of the entire repair inclusively so as to avoid being charged double for a repair that is worth no payment.
These are just some of the few areas that growing up in the world of cars have helped save money. I gladly share my experience to encourage car owners to avoid unnecessary expenditure on issues that can be sorted at home.