LIFESTYLE: When (And When Not) To Repair Your Car

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Car repairs can be expensive, but there are times when they can be necessary or helpful in the long run. This guide can help you to decide when to splash out on repairs. 

When to repair:

It’s a matter of safety

Some repairs are clearly an emergency - and it may even be illegal to drive your car without getting them fixed. A broken headlight or a broken driver seatbelt are examples of this. Others may be possible to cope with but could still be a danger and are worth getting repaired. For instance, a tyre with sidewall damage could be prone to a blowout while at speed, and is definitely something you shouldn’t ignore. 

The damage is likely to get a lot worse (and more expensive) if you ignore it

Some forms of damage may not be a concern now, but could become a concern in the future. Getting this damage repaired now could prevent the damage getting worse and prevent further repairs later down the line. For example, worn suspension bushes may affect the alignment of your car, leading to tyres getting worn faster, brakes possibly wearing faster and your entire suspension being affected - getting the suspension bush repaired early could prevent many more expensive repairs in the future. 

The damage could devalue your car (and you plan to one day sell)

Certain types of damage could devalue your car, which could be something to consider if you plan to one day sell. This is particularly the case with relatively new cars or otherwise flashy cars. Something as simple as scratched up alloys could knock hundreds off the price tag - it could be worth seeking out alloy repair from a company like to preserve your car’s value. Things like windscreen cracks, visible tyre damage and dashboard warning lights are also worth fixing. 

You’re covered by insurance/a warranty

Certain types of damage may be covered by your insurance policy or by a warranty. In other words, you could be entitled to free repairs. Just bear in mind any excess charges or possible increases in rates that may occur as a result. This post at explains more about when to claim on insurance. 

When not to repair:

The repair is not necessary – and your car is old and cheap

Something like scratch repair or upholstery repair typically isn’t a necessity. With a newer or more expensive car, you may be able to increase the value significantly by repairing such damage. However, with an older cheap car, the cost of repairs is unlikely to be worth any added value. With high mileage cars, you may not add any value at all. Unless you really don’t like the way the damage looks, there’s no practical advantage in seeking out repairs.

Repairs are likely to cost more than the value of your car

If your car is worth £1000 and future repairs are certain to exceed this, you should seriously consider whether repairs are actually worthwhile. That money could go towards another car - one that could be much more reliable. If your car has already done a lot of miles, you may just have to accept that it’s become a money pit and you’re better off scrapping it.  

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