Passat 2003 - Keep or not

My passat has 92,000 miles so I just invested $1000 in the timing belt/water pump plus a couple other more minor things. Now the headlights are out and it likely needs a new light switch (part is $230). I heard that the 2003 model has been more reliable than other years and planned to keep this car as long as possible. Expected to have to put some bucks in to do this, but now I am having second thoughts. Any other 2003 Passat owners out there with experience in the 120,000 mile range?

Timing belts are maintenance, like oil changes, but more expensive. That should not enter into you answer.

Those prices sound like the dealer talking. I suggest you find a local independent mechanic and see what they can do for you. They may be able to repair rather than replace or they may be able to find one in an auto recycling yard.

I suspect at worse you can get the part for a lot less on line.

Try to find the part on ebay. Perhaps you can install it yourself. If the car is close to or already paid off then the money that used to go to the monthly payment some will go to repairs and refurbishing. The car is getting older so plan on more money for repairs. It will last as long as you want or until it rusts out, whichever comes first.

What would you consider replacing it with? That would be a factor worth considering.

You’ve got another 90,000 miles until you have to replace the timing belt. I’d keep it and buy the light switch from an alternate source. I found a parts store on line that sells the headlight switch for about $150. Look around. You’ll find it for less.