I love my car but my 2004 Mazda 6 is, well – starting to show her age.
I purchased her early in 2005 and was very meticulous with her care for the first 3 years. I stayed on top of regular maintenance, and kept the exterior and interior spotless. In return, she was kind to me, and never gave me any trouble. In 2008 however, I moved to Chicago and that is when the abuse began. Initially it was involuntary. Between a long commute, salt for the snow and the biggest pot holes I had ever seen in my life – my car took a royal beating. My first place had a garage which spared the car from much of the elements but after I moved from that place, we downgraded to street parking only – talk about going from the “Hills” to the “Projects”. I began to overlook many things – the dings, the small chips in the paint job, even the little spots of rust popping up everywhere. I then went 8,000 or 9,000 miles without having the oil changed, ignored the check engine light, drove on bad tires, went a whole entire Chicago winter without washing her, yep, you name it – I put my poor car through it.
The day before I moved from Chicago back to Florida my car completely DIED on me. Payback, I guess. My move was delayed for two days while it was repaired. That time it was the transmission control module. Last year, I had a cracked engine mount, and a week ago the accelerator gave out. There were a few other minor things that occurred in between as well.
All of these repairs have totaled to about $3,000 in the last 2 years. Thank goodness I received a great raise at work, have my part-time gigs, AND paid my car off as soon as I moved back to Florida. The plan is to upgrade within the next year. I have my sights on this:
In the meantime, my car is still phenomenal on gas. Yes, it has a large tank for a mid-sized car (17 gallons) but typically I can go 8 or 9 days before filling up. That includes a 5-day round-trip work commute of about 48 miles. Not bad, but with gas at $4.00/gallon in my area, the roads trips are down to minimum this year. One of these might be in my future instead….LBVS!
Actually, I couldn’t do it – for safety and space reasons. I mean if someone were to just simply “tap” me from the back, they would be IN the front seat with me! I’ll pass!
Side note: Never buy a car that has been driven in Chicago – it is guaranteed to have been through Hell and back!