Car Buying - A Pain Level Somewhere Between Root Canal & Gangrenous Hemorrhoids.
Well, this is a pickle...
I've really got to get a new ride, and it's been so long since I've been car shopping, I'm in a state of extreme perplexitudinous despair.
The Big Red Ford is now old enough to legally vote. In addition to the ongoing and chronic failure of the coil-on-plug abominations that have me running on 6 or 7 cylinders, the turn signals and hazards haven't worked in 5 years, the radio hasn't worked in 6 years, and the complete heating-A/C system gave up the ghost last fall.
Gas mileage has dropped from a barely acceptable 14 MPG to less than 10, largely due to the wasted gas passing through the non-firing cylinders.
Add to that the 210,000 mile tally on the odometer, and it's past time to put the BRF out to pasture.
"Well, Cap, just buy a new car!!"
Nossofast, Sparky. I'm still adding up medical bills from the 5 week hospital/rehab facility stay. There's also the house flood issue, which has paid out a smidgen of the insurance claim, but not enough to get back to 100%.
I'm still in the 1st year of the new house and the joys of mortgage payments, so my income's already strained. Not painfully so, but I do need to avoid frivolities.
I'm fresh out of old relatives needing to dump a low-mileage car for pennies on the dollar, and the Texas Lotto jackpot remains annoyingly elusive.
So, here we are, with three options that I can see.
#1 - Finance a 2-4 year old low mileage vehicle, and live on tapwater and pinto beans for 48-60 months. In the dark, with no A/C except on the "Free Weekends" plan.
#2 - Buy a 5-9 year old vehicle with 50-100K miles on it, pay 1/2 down, finance the rest, and have a 36-48 month payment that is annoying, but livable.
#3 - Pay cash for a beater, drive it until it explodes. Rinse, repeat.
What say you, denizens of the Intertubes??