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Car Repair 2010

March 17, 2010

I knew it was coming.

My car needed to go into the shop, pretty much immediately due to very soft brakes.  As usual, they came up with a laundry list of other maintainance that needs to/should be done.

I was annoyed when he added on his list “and the timing belt should have already been done”.  I ineterupted.  “No.  That is at 110k.”  I may not know a lot about cars, but I am perfectly capable of reading my ownder manual and following directions.

I need to balance how long I’m keeping this car versus what needs to be done, and what I can pass on.  Goodbye fledging car fund, huh?

To top things off, my cell phone died yesterday.  It’s a fairly old phone and quite old school — no a qwerty keyboard and not 3G ready.  I’m figuring it is finally time to adopt a smartphone/multimedia phone of some sort.  I am not sure what my budget is.  What i mean by that is, my budget is whatever it costs to get what I want.  Then again, I don’t want to pay for a data plan, so maybe I should stay old school.   I think I have a back-up phone that works, so maybe I’ll stick with that.

With wedding stuff, my budget has really been quite all over the place lately and I need to sit down and go over stuff!  Good thing there is an extra paycheck month coming up!

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. March 17, 2010 10:07 am

    I think it’s a good idea to stick with the back up phone until you do some research and figure out what kind of phone you want. It’s always good to do your research and not have to make a decision on the fly because you’re lacking a phone.
    Too bad about the car, and don’t you just love how they try and pile stuff on to your bill? Typical.

    • SP permalink*
      March 17, 2010 10:14 am

      I had totally forgot about the old back-up phone until BF reminded me. I have a general idea of what I want but I need at least a few hours to do some research — so I’m lucky I have a back-up, because a few hours has been hard to come by lately!

  2. March 17, 2010 11:01 am

    sounds like you’ve got a lot going on right now! you’re right that it’s a good time to step back and look at what you want to accomplish before jumping into some purchasing decisions.

  3. March 17, 2010 12:29 pm

    From my experience, when you go with a smartphone, you cannot go back! And it’s quite expensive (my iphone costs me 86 dollars a month for the cheapest plan they offer), so holding out with the old phone for a while longer might be smart.

    • SP permalink*
      March 17, 2010 1:02 pm

      I’m still on a family plan for $10 month, and the “multimedia” phones require at least a $10 month extra, up to $30.

      The back-up phone is an old motorola SLVR and I really really hate the style. If anything I’d get a replacement phone of a different type. But i want a querty keyboard — i feel overwhlemed/annoyed every time i get a text!

  4. March 17, 2010 12:56 pm

    Cars are so damn expensive. But good for you for knowing what the owner’s manuel says. I should probably do that…

  5. Taylor permalink
    March 17, 2010 2:22 pm

    My car has 242,000 miles – a Honda, three timing belts, all put on because I was peer pressured into it before I realized that it is my car and I know it best. Don’t automatically assume that soft brakes means the car needs to be replaced. Or anything else that they put on their stupid checklist. Find a solo mechanic that will fix what is broken and check those things that need to be checked – like the brakes. And then drive it until your car fund is a nice size, and then buy something newer, and don’t give it a second thought.

    • SP permalink*
      March 17, 2010 2:54 pm

      Oh I’m not! It isn’t ready for car heaven yet. There was some leak in a brake cylinder, a couple hundred to repair that and a supposed oil leak (which has been a slow leak for some time and i’m skeptical they are going to be able to fix it…)

      I’m probably going to ignore the rest of the maintenance for now. Most of it will break when it breaks and it won’t harm anything else. except the timing belt — when that goes, it takes the engine with it! I’m researching that still (ie, whether it really needs to be replaced at 110k as recommended)

      I was intending on keeping the car through 2010 anyway and I think it will last

  6. March 17, 2010 3:22 pm

    Cars….grrr I have a love/hate relationship with mine. I love the convenience, I hate all the expenses! Hope you can find a new phone that’s not too expensive!

  7. March 17, 2010 4:00 pm

    My cheapie touchscreen phone died a few weeks ago, or so I thought. When I finally took it to the store, it had decided to start working again!

    It’s good you’ve got a backup phone for now. While I was phoneless, I used T’s phone and he borrowed his brother’s old smartphone. Now he wants to keep it and fix it – it works great but the sound is shot and he can only text, not call. Grrr.

  8. March 19, 2010 9:48 pm

    We were in a similar car predicament last year. We decided to fix what we knew needed fixing (what we originally went in for) and hold off on the other repairs or buying a new car. The car lasted us another year without needed anything else and we just recently sold it (only because we needed more space due to the recent birth of our third child). I agree that it’s tricky to figure out the balance between paying for repairs or paying for a new car.

    In regards to the phone, I have a super old school one that I am holding onto because I don’t want to have to pay for a new one. My husband and I would love to go the smartphone route but we also really just like only paying $10 a month as part of a family plan.

  9. March 26, 2010 9:18 pm

    A really good mechanic will actually examine the belt itself and tell you what kind of shape it’s in. My family friend is excellent with cars and examines the parts before allowing us to replace anything because it can be such a waste going by timing or even the owner’s manual if your usage isn’t “average.”

    • March 26, 2010 9:34 pm

      Hmm. I need to find a really good mechanic instead of a “help, my brakes are totally shot, who can service my car ASAP!?!?” mechanic.

      Thanks for the tip, I guess I naively thought there was really no good way to tell. We do know about one really good car person, but they are in the midwest… good for Q&A not so much for inspecting things

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