Should I Fix My Car Before Trading It In?

August 10th, 2021 by

Service Technician Working Under Vehicle

It’s normal to wonder, “Should I fix my car before trading it in?” Most South San Francisco and Daly City car shoppers with a trade-in vehicle want to get top-dollar. But is that achieved by getting the most for your vehicle as-is, or will you increase the resale value by spending a bit more now to get your trade-in in better condition? Honestly, it largely depends what types of repairs you’re considering and how much they will cost. The finance center here at Ocean Honda of Burlingame can help more! Just call 650-395-2720 or read on to learn more.

What Factors Into Vehicle Trade In Values?

When you value your trade, multiple factors play into the amount of money you’ll wind up getting for it. Here are some of the most important ones:

  • Mechanical condition
  • Maintenance records
  • Vehicle history report
  • Vehicle make and model
  • Age
  • Mileage
  • Appearance
  • Local market

Dents and scratches may decrease your vehicle’s value, but they’re hardly the worst offender when it comes to reducing your trade-in amount. Major items like transmission issues or check engine lights are worth more to investigate and fix in many cases. If in doubt, schedule service to have your vehicle looked over and see how much it might be to fix any outstanding issues, then get your trade-in estimate and compare the two figures.

To Fix or Not to Fix Your Vehicle?

You can easily take care of minor car repairs yourself, like filling in light scratches, or even quickly spot-treating stains. Going to a car wash isn’t a bad idea either, but generally, you don’t want to go beyond minor, inexpensive repairs yourself. Of course, if you do wind up servicing your car and completing more major repairs, you’ll be able to keep your vehicle or re-sell it, whatever works better for you, giving you added flexibility.

Recommended Vehicle Fixes

What are some recommended fixes to make prior to trading your vehicle in? We recommend completing the following:

  • Clean your vehicle inside and out
  • Replace burnt-out bulbs
  • Fix windshield cracks (your insurance may cover this)
  • Buff foggy headlights and/or taillights
  • Fill in small scratches with a paint pen
  • Clean your upholstery and/or carpets to remove odors and stains
  • Top off fluids
  • Replace wipers

Trade In Your Vehicle Today With Ocean Honda of Burlingame!

We here at Ocean Honda of Burlingame make the vehicle trade-in process quick and convenient! Looking to benefit from our unique process? Give us a call at 650-395-2720 with questions. Meanwhile, get answers to all your questions like “Can I terminate my lease early?” by visiting our finance center in Burlingame today!


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