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Fix or Sell? 2005 4Runner 140k

Hi All,
I have a 2005 4Runner with 140k miles. It’s paid off. Have a blown gasket with a $5000 price to fix it. Otherwise car is in great shape. Looking for advice. Do I fix it or sell it? Thanks.

Reluctant to get into another car payment but $5000 cash would be a dent in savings.

Toyota dealership offered $2500 trade in.

Well, there are several factors to consider.

First, does the vehicle currently meet your needs in terms of space, reliability, fuel economy, etc.?

If yes… I assume you mean the engine needs a new head gasket. I’m not overly familiar with 4Runners… but I’d say $5000 is pretty high, probably a dealer price. In fact, I’d wager $5000 would get you a whole new (or rebuilt) engine. Shop around for a better price on the repair work.

If no… a top of the line 2005 4Runner with 140K miles in my area has a trade in value of $6800. Granted, that’s top of the line with a running engine, but still, I’d say the dealer is trying to give you a smiling handshake while picking your pocket.

Whether you decide to repair or sell, check around outside the dealer. Good luck.

1 Like

Agree with @ledhed75 $5K does seem a bit high for a head gasket. RockAuto shows a rebuilt engine (long block) for $3900. Not recommending that but just a comparison. Call around to independent shops and see if they can beat that price.

The bottom line, if the truck is in good shape and meets your needs, even $5K is about 10 months of car payments for a similar new vehicle that you take 5 years or more to pay off. The engine should be good for at least 60K and likely more after a head gasket job. The mechanic can check the valve seal, head warp and maybe replace valve seals, too, while the heads are off.

From the dealers standing point that is a fair offer. This thing is 12 years and just another vehicle, nothing special. They will just wholesale it in a group of trade ins and hope to break even.

Only you can decide if you want to fix this and consider how you will feel if the transmission goes a few months after you have it repaired.

Get another quote. That seems awfully high for a blown head-gasket.

I owned a 05 4runner. Gave it to my son when I bought my 14 Highlander. Son sold it and bought a Mazda when the 4runner had a little over 300k miles. These are very goo strong reliable vehicles…but it’s also 12 years old. Is it worth getting fixed. at $5k - it’s questionable…but get another quote. Even here in New England it shouldn’t cost that much.