I am having a really though month with finances, and life in general… and now my car’s engine has died on me. I drive a Mazda Protege 2000 ES with 197,000 miles on it.
The problem started with the water pump failing; I made a post a week or two weeks ago asking for opinions and decided after that to go fix it. I also decided not to drive the car that much, if at all until I could get it fixed. I always kept an eye for the water and the temp gauge, and I thought it could last a couple of short trips at least. Well today was my appointment with the mechanic, and the belt broke off… The water pump went all lose, and I suddenly felt the steering was starting to fail too. So I decided to pull over… before even reaching the side of the road, the battery indicator was lit, then all the other lights came in, and fumes were coming out from the front.
(Unrelevant, Skip if you wish, just ventilating…)
We also had a problem with the tow truck driver… He drove away with my car because we were hesitating on paying the extra fees for what he called “a wrench” to pull my car up onto the tow truck. We end up paying $265 because he drove off the shop with our car “back to their lot”, while I was calling my insurance agent to ask for the fees he was asking me about. The initial fee was just $50. We called the cops, and they said it is not their responsibility for civil disagreements. And the insurance said they didn’t know we needed a wrench… So I don’t get it, don’t you call the tow trucks because your car is stuck anyways? I paid the insurance to get me a tow truck, said clearly that we didn’t have to pay anything else and now we ended up paying $265 to get my dead car back. I know this part is unrelevant to my problem but I am a bit frustrated right now and wanted some sort of advice since this is my first time dealing with towing companies. My mechanics laughed at me because I didn’t took my car to the shop before it was too late. I didn’t had $800 on my pocket that moment. Now they laughed at me because my car is dead and that I had to pay $265 to get back a car with a dead engine. (The end)
In the shop my mechanic tried starting the car and said that the compression was lost and that the engine was dead. I actually don’t want to see the car go… And everyone think it is stupid, but what I am thinking is… All I can afford right now is another $2000 car, which will mean that I might need to fix a bunch of stuff again anyways. So why not just replace the engine? The engine is what basically makes a car… a car. The rest of the car seems fine, and I never thought it would die all suddenly (kinda…)
What do you guys think? Is it worth saving a 16 year old vehicle? or should I just sell it as mechanic special or just dump it in a junkyard? If buying another car, should I go with Toyotas as suggested by my mechanic? He really hates Mazdas and American cars, saying they are all unreliable.
Thanks in advanced and sorry for the long post.