a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Vehicle Dreamin'

Monday, July 16, 2012

Vehicle Dreamin'

SUMMARY: Repairs for another aging family member.

I said Sunday night that I was takin' MUTT MVR in for a checkup and that we'd go for a long walk, too.

MUTT MVR's brakes have been squealing for quite some time. Makes my ears hurt. A little embarrassing in public, like when inching one's way down a freeway entrance ramp under the control of metering lights. Plus one of the map lights, one of the dashboard lights, and the rear pop-out windows one-by-one stopped working. And we're due for an oil change. (6,000 miles per mfg recommendation; I've added no oil, down not even a quart, amazing at any age, but particularly this age.)

Pop-out windows in particular are an issue when I have dogs in the car and want cross-ventilation. They work only electrically. Which is too bad right now, because it's expensive to diagnose and, I fear, will be expensive to fix because they have to open up the side walls, and dagnabit I didn't think to take the crates out of the back. Oh, well, that might mean another trip in the future.

Dropped MM off bright and early, then the Merle Girls and I walked home in the cool morning air, a bit over 2 miles.

Starting to ponder:
  • It would be really cool to have a still-healthy car go over 200,000 miles--I've never come this close before.  That would be about 2 more years. 
  • If small things are starting to go wrong, will I end up putting more money into fixing than I would into a new car?
  • Should I spend the money to get the damaged front corner fixed, or save it for an eventual newer vehicle? Would the cost to fix it come back in bluebook value, and do I care?
  • Should I get a second, small, high-MPG car for tooling around town with just myself? If so, rent or lease?
  • If I replaced MUTT MVR, would I replace it with a later model of the same thing?

These are very early ponderings.


  1. Don't bother with cosmetics on an old van. Blue book value is not going to matter much.

    I would not buy another car for around town. The cost of that totally negates any gas savings.

    Leasingnevermakes sense except in cases where you can deduct the cost or you have to have a new care very three years.

    Keep the current van running until it is not reliable or you have a major cost ahead. IMHO and all that stuff.

    1. Thanks for the input. I still really need to do something about the damage to the front left because currently it won't hold a left turn signal because of denting. I'm now pretty convinced to just see what minimum I can get done strictly to get that turn signal back in. I wouldn't call the rear windows not opening or the dashboard light not working "cosmetic", but I am so with the program on "costs more to fix than I want to spend despite the inconvenience."

      I didn't say, but my main thoughts on getting another car would be that maybe it would make MUTT MVR last longer, would be more fun to drive, and would have enough seats in it that I could actually take other people places rather than always going in other people's vehicles. Still TBD--would have to figure out what it would really cost me.