I have a 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee with 103,800 miles on it. Recently I have been told by two repair shops that one of my engine mounts is broken, I need to replace my 4x4 transfer case as well as my rack and pinion. On top of those 3 major issues, spark plugs, tires, and rotors and other things will soon need to be replaced for regular maintenance. I’ve been struggling to figure out if I should cut ties with this car and buy a different car or should I put the money into this car. Both mechanics are quoting $6k+ for repairs and my car right now is worth about $10k (probably less with all of these issues). The car is paid off which is making the decision more difficult. Any help or advice would be great.
Spark plugs, tires, and brake rotors are regular maintenance items, so–IMO–that shouldn’t figure into your decision.
However, if your Jeep has an automatic transmission, how many times have you changed the trans fluid?
If it is less than 3 times, then a very pricey rebuilt transmission is a very real possibility w/in the next couple of years.
How about rust? If there are already signs of rust damage, then it may not be worth sinking a lot of money into repairing the vehicle.
Then again, prices for both used and new cars are currently sky-high. And, if you buy a used vehicle you could wind up buying one that will need as many repairs as your Jeep.
This is without doubt a tough decision, and I will only offer questions for you to ponder. You will have to weigh your options, and that will not be easy.
Jeeps aren’t particularly reliable, which means sinking money into it this time means you’re likely to have to sink more money into it later. That said, $6k is a whole lot cheaper than buying a decent used car these days because the market is insane.
It really comes down to your budget. Can you afford to be nickel and dimed by this vehicle as time passes, or can you afford to replace it with something newer that will involve a much more significant initial cash outlay but might have fewer repair payments down the road?
And it comes down to your situation. Can you afford the time/loss of transportation/missed work to have your vehicle in the shop a lot? All of these questions are, of course, things only you can answer.
Were I making that call, I’d dump the Jeep because its reliability is not nearly high enough for my personal tastes. I like cars that you almost exclusively only have to maintain rather than fix.
Other than agreeing with VDCdriver, I’m of the opinion that if the car is straight, no rust issues, and runs well with little oil consumption it should be repaired.
As he mentioned, a lot of that should not be factored in and to me anyway, a motor mount and rack and pinion are not that major.
The transfer case is the big ticket item and you might consider pricing that around a bit more.
While they are in the minority, some salvage yards will install what they sell for a nominal fee which is generally much less than an automotive shop will charge.
That also gives you a guarantee against getting a bad transfer case as this would be on them to redo it if that happened.
Do you really need 4 or all wheel drive? If you do.just realize that repairs and operating expenses are more expensive than for front or rear drive cars.
I live near Buffalo NY and in 60+ years of driving, I have never owned a car with more that 2 wheel drive. I have never owned one with a locking differential so I guess mine would better be described as one wheel drive but I go out in any kind of weather and have never been stuck with my car. I do have about 3 million miles of tractor trailer experience.
A 2 wheel drive car will do better in the snow with good snow tires than an all wheel drive without snow tires. I only bothered with snow tires once since 1981 when I started driving front drive cars.
Hopefully a higher trade in value will help offset the different car price,
A vehicle with all those problems might not get a good trade in, even today.
The huge shortages and price increases pushes the ‘fix or sell’ decision more towards ‘fix’.