A Decidedly Un-Fun Purchase

Want to know a super fun way to spend the Thanksgiving/Black Friday weekend? Spending $650 to fix a car that’s only worth less than $500!

Because this happened:

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The tire was shredded on the inside, so we needed a new one—no fixing could be done. And when you buy one tire, you really have to buy two. But in this case, the rear tires were low on tread, too, so we bought four. And apparently these tires were actually too small for the car in the first place, according to the tire shop. Which is funny because they are the ones who put them on three years ago. Harrumph.

So four tires = $450. Okay, fine. The car is worth about $500, and our self-imposed limit on how much we’ll spend to fix it is $500.

But then we got a call a couple hours later saying, “Okay, the tires are on. We also checked the brakes and found the front brakes are down below 2mm and need to be replaced. That’s another $213.”

At that point, what do you say? You already have to pay for the $450 worth of tires, so it would be foolish to say, “Forget it; the car’s not worth that much. We’ll just trade it in.” And so there we were, faced with a $650 bill for a car that’s only worth less than $500. Oh, and that hasn’t had a serpentine belt replaced in forever, so we’re expecting that will go at some point. And god knows what else.

I have to admit, I was kind of annoyed. If checking the brakes is part of the routine service when you get new tires, shouldn’t they do that before they start work? Because if they had, and they’d said, “Okay, tires and brakes will be $650 out the door,” Chris and I would’ve had the conversation about whether it was even worth it to put that much money into the car! But the sneaky way they did it, we were already out $450 for the tires, so at that point we pretty much might as well put in the extra $213 for the tires and just suck it up. Harrumph. The darn thing better last at least six more months, for all that! Preferably a year.

But all was not lost. We went to the park while we were waiting for the car to be done, which was fun.

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Look at those splits! Low muscle tone for the win!

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