Repair or replace: Here’s a rule of thumb for when it’s time to break up with your old car.


Washington Post, Oct 24, 2019

There’s a battle intensifying in our home.

I want to keep my 13-year-old Honda Odyssey. I’ll admit it’s definitely a clunker. For a bit of time the windshield wiper on the rear window wasn’t working, and I had to duct tape it to the window to keep it from swinging down. But I eventually got it fixed for about $30.

I tried the duct tape trick on the broken cup holder in one of the middle seats, but the tape didn’t hold. And there are so many small dings on the van that if someone accidentally hits me, I wouldn’t be able to tell if it’s a new dent.

In the past year or so, I’ve had to fix the air conditioner and repair other parts. Now there’s a grinding noise when I turn the wheel. Could be something with the power steering, my trusted mechanic told me when I called recently to describe the sound. I’ll be dropping the van off soon to get that issue repaired.

Over the past two years, I’ve spent about $3,000 on repairs. But I’m okay with that. I think the van has got some more spunk and miles to go. My husband wants to replace it. I want to keep repairing it. This is the debate every time we drive the van.

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