One of the questions we get asked the most. "Do you think my car is worth fixing?". Well, here is the long answer to that question.
Book Value. Everyone talks about "Book Value". I understand that....everyone wants to be smart with money. Of course. You don't have a Cadillac or a classy GM car like a Pontiac Bonneville or a Buick Lucerne because you were foolish with your cash. You worked hard for your car (or you got lucky and picked it up for cheap because it needs repairs...we will get to that later)....
Say your 1999 Cadillac Deville has a book value of $1,500. This is what you expect the car to be worth, to a potential buyer or as collateral for a bank loan. Now you are faced with a repair in the $3-5k range which far exceeds the perceived value of the car. In your eyes it doesn't make sense to spend that kind of money into a car worth so little. It is mechanically "totalled". Right?
Your 1999 Cadillac Deville (for argument's sake we are using a 99 Deville) is worth scrap value at a wrecking yard if it can't drive more than 10 minutes before it overheats. So now you're going to take the $200 you would get for the car, take the $4,000 (estimated) that it would cost you to fix that Deville, and you are going to go car shopping. The problem is that you are spoiled. Admit it. I do! I am totally spoiled having driven Cadillac for the past number of years. You are going to be looking to replace that Cadillac for $4,200.00. You want something that's reliable, fuel efficient, powerful, comfortable, looks sharp, has a great safety rating, and won't break the bank. This is going to be tough.
If you spend the $3,000-$5,000 and ensure your Northstar is repaired with our SureGrip head studs, you are breathing new life into that Cadillac of yours. This is not a band-aid repair that will get you through another 6 months of driving. This is a LONG-TERM investment. Think about it! Your car is likely paid off. All is is costing you is routine maintenance, fuel, insurance and now this repair. And on top of that, you already KNOW your car. You know the issues it has, the quirks, the perks, etc... If you buy another used car; you have no idea for sure what you're about to buy. You could be buying someone else's problems.
I have a general rule of thumb when people call me and ask "Is my car worth fixing?". I ask them "How is the condition of the body? How is the condition of the interior?" If both the body and interior are in relatively good condition, GET IT FIXED!!!
These were $40,000-$60,000 cars when they were new. If yours is paid for, it's in overall decent condition, and you only have to spend $3,000-$5,000 to make it last another 5 years (that's what we warranty our head gasket repairs for), fixing your Northstar could be one of the best automotive investments you will ever make!
The next time you think about book value, remember something. That's what someone would pay you for your car if you sold it. If you keep it that has no bearing at all and should not be part of your decision making process.
If you bought your Northstar car cheap because it has issues:
Your first argument will be "why would I spend $3,000 into a car I only paid $500 for?" The real answer is, why wouldn't you? For $3,500 (estimated) you have a reliable Northstar powered Cadillac for under $5,000....how can you go wrong?