My 05 Kia Sorento decided it wouldn’t go in reverse while in a parking spot recently. I’m no genius, but I knew that’s bad news. Later in the day (when I got it to back out of the parking spot by parking, turning off, then starting up again), the expected check engine light glows and the car won’t shift beyond 1st gear. I took it to an AAMCO, one of the few places that will rebuild transmissions, assuming that might save me on the cost of a full replacement. A takedown fee of $790 was required to take it apart and decide what was wrong. It would be applied toward the repair and I was sure I’d be spending at least this amount no matter what. I budgeted 1500-2000 as a high end after calling around to see what the full replacement might run. The rebuild cost 2800 bucks with a 12 month/12K warranty. Not sure why the rebuild would have cost more than the replacement. Did I get screwed here?
Lastly, what’s a good formula to use when deciding if a repair is worthwhile against the value of the vehicle? No more than 30% of the value? 50%? I thought about ditching the car with the trans trouble but figured I’d be losing the same amount for the repair in the trade in anyway. Besides, who want’s a trade in that doesn’t run?