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CuriousLoner's avatar

Selling/fixing a car best route to take?

Asked by CuriousLoner (1808 points ) January 4th, 2013

I have a paid off 2003 Hyundai Elantra. I bought it used and had it for little over 2 years. Besides basic maintenance oil change,tune up and tires over the 2 years I only had to get a new radiator and thermostat due to over heating.

Other than that it ran fine. Now since I’ve been gone let family use it. It has been sitting for a while in their yard, last time I went on leave this April 12, from what I was told the oil pump is bad. It apparently broke when I was gone so I have no real idea.

I can either sell it to a guy for $600 basically junk it pretty much OR try spend a little money to get it fixed and sell it.

From what I’ve seen on books a 2003 Elantra with 132k and the body is fine, small scracth front left side, easy fix though nothing major. Told about 2–4 grand is what I should be looking to get from it, if I get if fixed and running good.

http://www.kbb.com/hyundai/elantra/2003-hyundai-elantra/gls-sedan-4d/?vehicleid=2541&intent=trade-in-sell&mileage=132000&options=100116%7ctrue%7c100110%7cfalse&pricetype=private-party#survey

My questions are

$600 bucks if I did “junk” it, reasonable price?

Worth getting fixed? I told I’m looking at about $400 dollars to have it fixed, however my understanding is if the oil pump is bad the engine might have damage already or might not fix everything. Possibility of having more work needed to be done, or might be just that….

Any suggestions or advice?

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9 Answers

CWOTUS's avatar

Talk to a mechanic (have him look at the car) to give you a realistic estimate of what is wrong and what needs to be repaired.

I thought that $600 sounded like a lot of money for an oil pump replacement, but apparently that’s not such a bad estimate. So that would cover the cost of the oil pump replacement, but as you have already guessed, if it went out and people continued to drive the vehicle, then there may be significant engine damage, too. But no one can determine that without seeing the vehicle.

CuriousLoner's avatar

@CWOTUS The $600 is what someone wanted to buy it for as it is right now, thats what he offered me, as I said before right now the car is just sitting there and I have the title so it is just going to waste really. I was told oil pump replacement was going to about $400.

My original plan was to give the car to my little brother as graduation gift from high school so he had something to get around with. This was of course before it broke down, but he said the insurance is too high for him and only working part time and my family already has a vehicle and can’t really afford repairs.

So now I’m trying to figure out what to do with it.

CWOTUS's avatar

Of course. I read quickly and (apparently) carelessly.

I guess if it were my car and I could fix it for $400 to sell it for $2000 or more, then that’s what I’d do.

CuriousLoner's avatar

@CWOTUS Haha no worries. I am in the same mindset at moment. I’m just thinking if the $400 dollar repair does not fix it, then I might be wasting money on it at that point. Be so much easier if I was no in AK right now.

majorrich's avatar

My father used to say if a repair will keep the car running longer than car payments for that period it’s worth fixing.

jerv's avatar

I would run a compression test first, just to make sure that the lack of lubrication didn’t do something like wear the rings or something. But it is entirely possible that the car would be worth repairing, and a compression test is simple and often can be done for free.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Who’s doing the repair? If you can get him to do a compression test first that would be great. If it looks like the rings are OK spend the money and get it fixed right. And give the guy and extra $50 for doing the test whether or not you decide to repair the car. He will appreciate it.

If it were me I’d take the chance and spend the money to repair it. If the rings were bad I’d sell the car to the friend for $1200. That car is too good to junk.

Crashsequence2012's avatar

An engine that’s been subjected to overheating and low oil pressure?

Get out now. Sell as is.

jerv's avatar

@Crashsequence2012 My first Corolla blew a head gasket, overheated a few times over the course of the week it took to get the money together for parts, and after a weekend of wrench-turning, it was fine. Ran perfectly for years afterwards. This after running 2 quarts low (in a 3.7 quart system) near the beginning of ownership. I ran my ‘89 Golf dry for a couple of days and it ran fine for over a year; engine still ran great when other (non-drivetrain) issues took it off the road.

You cannot make a blanket statement. It’s worth investigating to see if it has been damaged, but if you automatically assume it’s toast then you must also me the type who takes one sip from an open can and then tosses the whole thing in case something fell in between sips. There is such a thing as overly cautious.

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