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What does your car really cost you?

Discussions about the economic and financial ramifications of PEAK OIL

What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 02:30:38

I just spent nearly $2000 AUD on fixing my aircon the other day I have had the car for 6 years its 10 years old
Thats nearly a $1 a day just for air con

I have had this car for 6 years so everything is x 6

Total cost was $13,000 after trade in
New Battery =$200
Air con repair= $2,000
Registration $600 x 6= $3,600
Insurance $600 x6=$3600
Licence= $320 (6 years)
Oil Service =6x $100=$600
Traffic Fines =$200
Parking= $300

Total Costs = $20,220

= $3370 a year
=$280.83 a month
=$64.80 a week
=$9.23 a day
+
Oil Costs
Petrol (gas) $300x6 =$1800
$300 a year
$25 a month
$5.76 a week
.82 Cents a day


Total $10.05 a day to have a car


Ive spent more on keeping cool than I did on oil (petrol/gas)
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby PeakOiler » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 05:49:12

I bought a new F-150 (extended cab) in 1998. The sale price was $20,560. My TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) as of this month is approximately $56,074.

Loan Interest: $3,637
Gasoline: $10,387
Gallons: 7,658.76
(~$1.32/gal)
Maintenance: $8,870
License fees and taxes: $2,478
Insurance: $4,939
Inspection: $202

Today's mileage: 135,938
Cost/mile: $0.41
Cost/day: $8.14

Grand total: $56,074

Now I need to update the TCO for my 2003 Honda Insight...
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 06:05:28

Sheesh Shaved, you got burned. I do all my own mechanical work, so services cost me less than $100 for a full, $50 for basic, $20 for el cheapo oil change if things are tight. I always buy cars which are easy to find parts for, currently a 14 yo Astra (1million+ sold just in Australia). I could completely replace the aircon motor & regas it for under $200.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby MD » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 06:41:34

paid cash for a base hyundai accent in jan 2013. 4 years old and good for six more. changed out the cheapo factory tires @30k miles for a set of quality oversized michelins.

brakes are hardly worn because I don't use them except very gently (don't people know how to down shift any more?)

60k miles at 30mpg. cheap oil changes and a bath once a month whether it needs it or not.

so to answer the core question: It doesn't cost me much at all.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 10:40:31

Downshifting moves wear from cheap brake pads to expensive clutch. False economy.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby Cog » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 10:52:11

I moved from buying new vehicles to buying used. You do inherit some problems doing so but I drive very little nowadays since I retired. I keep the pickup truck to haul some thing around in but I don't absolutely need it.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby evilgenius » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 11:34:24

Too cheap a used car will cost you, if you get in an accident. Generally, it is so much hassle (find a new car, taxes on new car, maintenance on new car, etc.) changing cars that it is worth it not to. I drive for a living, so I have to avoid those costs. If you get hit driving something that is too cheaply valued it will be totaled in even a minor collision. You can arrange to get that cheap car back from the insurance company for less payout on it, but then you can't get full coverage anymore. You want full coverage because it is essentially protection from an at fault person's insurance not paying you if you are hit. I've learned this the hard way. Now, I try to buy cheap, but still fairly valuable cars. It has to be worth more than what a fender bender costs to repair. You want it to stay that way for as long as possible as well. I like used cars because they don't come with huge value drops over depreciation. You just have to avoid the temptation to go too cheap. If you get a Toyota, or some similar make, it may stay together long enough to make you very happy you bought it.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 11:43:35

That's it evil. My total running costs are less than most pay in interest. I drive for a living too, other people's $100,000+ trucks, which I treat like my own, do about 100,000 paid kms a year there & about 20,000 in my cars, never made an insurance claim or had any offenses.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby Subjectivist » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 13:23:20

evilgenius wrote:Too cheap a used car will cost you, if you get in an accident. Generally, it is so much hassle (find a new car, taxes on new car, maintenance on new car, etc.) changing cars that it is worth it not to. I drive for a living, so I have to avoid those costs. If you get hit driving something that is too cheaply valued it will be totaled in even a minor collision. You can arrange to get that cheap car back from the insurance company for less payout on it, but then you can't get full coverage anymore. You want full coverage because it is essentially protection from an at fault person's insurance not paying you if you are hit. I've learned this the hard way. Now, I try to buy cheap, but still fairly valuable cars. It has to be worth more than what a fender bender costs to repair. You want it to stay that way for as long as possible as well. I like used cars because they don't come with huge value drops over depreciation. You just have to avoid the temptation to go too cheap. If you get a Toyota, or some similar make, it may stay together long enough to make you very happy you bought it.


Depends on the state, over the line in Michigan they have no fault insurance. Your insurance company pays your bill and if they think it is worth it they sue the other drivers insurance company to get it back. It can be a real PITA for us Ohio residents who have traditional insurance who get hit by some idiot from the state next door, they are thick as fleas in Toledo.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby AdamB » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 13:35:44

What does your car really cost you?


Which one?
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 19:44:13

SeaGypsy wrote:Sheesh Shaved, you got burned. I do all my own mechanical work, so services cost me less than $100 for a full, $50 for basic, $20 for el cheapo oil change if things are tight. I always buy cars which are easy to find parts for, currently a 14 yo Astra (1million+ sold just in Australia). I could completely replace the aircon motor & regas it for under $200.

I service my own car best quality oil and filters and parts.
I thought this was an electrical fault,Im only good at basics.
Auto electricians charge like wounded bulls (especially ones who have worked in the mines on big dollars and move to small isolated towns without competition)
The aircon condenser alone cost $1000.00 non genuine even though its exactly the same as what Honda calls genuine and charges $300 more for. (we get screwed for cars and parts in Australia)
If the car was drivable I would have shopped around, I know a Honda wrecker in Melbourne who would have posted it up.(for $3 or 4 hundred)
I didnt get a choice small town in the middle of nowhere aircon part was taken out and replaced without consultation new part took 4 days to get here.

Illegal to gas your own aircons in Australia.

Previous auto elec moved to a bigger town to make more money, treated locals well and screwed the tourists only,this new guy charges everyone the same.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby frankthetank » Tue 07 Feb 2017, 20:23:51

Cars are money pits..i have 3. Ugh.. i think its possible to go without one, but man it would suck in winter/heat of the summer/raining...etc. etc.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby AdamB » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 00:01:43

frankthetank wrote:Cars are money pits..i have 3. Ugh.. i think its possible to go without one, but man it would suck in winter/heat of the summer/raining...etc. etc.


Just collected another one myself, a 15 year old Chrysler with 55K on it, collected from original owners. Cost $1000 on 3rd party labor and parts just to get it to my minimum fleet standards, and that doesn't count the work I did on it, or my parts costs (oil and filter change, tranny fluid change, 2 radiator caps, air filter, some debugging tools for the coolant system).

One day 600 mile shakedown trip to make sure everything holds up to non-stop use, the daughter added pink fuzzy dice, bluetooth transmitter for her phone, looking for a pink steering wheel cover, I mean really, the things college girls do to family cars.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 01:21:57

Moral of the story is
I spend nearly 10X more on just having a car than I do on oil.

This is why I dont have an electric car
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby EdwinSm » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 06:53:52

I have looked at getting rid of the car and using public transport, but I am about 80km outside the nearest city! Doing this (and keeping the same number of trips we make now) would save about €1.00 a day when compared to the running costs of a car. This is small enough that the convenience of the car (say for an emergency trip to the nearest x-ray department = 60 km, which we had to do on 2nd January) is worth the extra cost.

As the car is about 10 years old the capital cost is now roughly that same as the running costs, that is around €3.80 a day for each.

As I am now retired, the extra mileage is low so the car is good for quite a few more years [much to the disgust of politicians who want a much faster turn over of cars - especially as we have a very high tax rate on new cars]. So the capital costs per day will go down, but they have already been paid.

My thinking, at this time, is that with the sunken capital cost of the car it is worth keeping the car as the running costs would not be much more than long distance public transport. However, I don't think that I will replace the car when it gets too old.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby GoghGoner » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 07:13:59

Monkey, your petrol costs are really low compared to most of us Americans. We drive on average 15k miles a year. Looking at your costs, you may drive 1/2 that? With low gasoline prices, I would assign that part of the cost of ownership at 20%. When the prices is double, then the gasoline part of the cost of ownership jumps to 40%. So the gasoline cost makes a big difference to most people -- at least here in the US. Most Americans do not allow room in their budgets for such a big increase in gasoline costs so they will stop paying other bills when gasoline prices go back to $4.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby Tanada » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 11:35:20

My car costs me little enough to make it worth having, which is the answer that actually matters.
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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby MD » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 12:33:32

SeaGypsy wrote:Downshifting moves wear from cheap brake pads to expensive clutch. False economy.

wrong. it's an automatic. heat transfer to the hydraulics. works great as long as you aren't stupid about it. looking ahead and measuring distance makes all the difference.
sometimes the eager racers behind me get pissed off, but I don't give a rat's ass about them. I am just protecting my investment like all good conservationists do.

"get out of my way you old f@ck!"

nope. pass me when you can, and eat my exhaust until you do.
Stop filling dumpsters, as much as you possibly can, and everything will get better.

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Re: What does your car really cost you?

Unread postby frankthetank » Wed 08 Feb 2017, 13:06:26

AdamB wrote:
frankthetank wrote:Cars are money pits..i have 3. Ugh.. i think its possible to go without one, but man it would suck in winter/heat of the summer/raining...etc. etc.


Just collected another one myself, a 15 year old Chrysler with 55K on it, collected from original owners. Cost $1000 on 3rd party labor and parts just to get it to my minimum fleet standards, and that doesn't count the work I did on it, or my parts costs (oil and filter change, tranny fluid change, 2 radiator caps, air filter, some debugging tools for the coolant system).

One day 600 mile shakedown trip to make sure everything holds up to non-stop use, the daughter added pink fuzzy dice, bluetooth transmitter for her phone, looking for a pink steering wheel cover, I mean really, the things college girls do to family cars.


We bought a minivan 3.5 years ago for $1200. It really hasn't been too bad. It gets crappy mileage (maybe 21mpg tops in the summer--but i'm guessing its avg around 18mpg). Don't drive it a whole lot, but it's cheap ($100 6 months for insurance/$75/yr for registration) to own. The most i've stuck into it was 4 tires (sam's club). I did struts, radiator, front brakes myself. The nice thing is that you can pull the seats out and its basically a covered pickup. I can fit 4x8 sheets of plywood/drywall in there no problem. I'm thinking i've put about 10K miles on it...

I really have no desire to travel anymore. I think i'd get on an airplane if i want to go somewhere... An electric bike might make a lot of sense... especially in the warmer months.
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