Fixing Problem Cars

Here at Fix My Old Ride we celebrate the problem cars from the 1990s and the 2000s. This is the main focus of the site. However, we'll squeeze in a few auto repair information articles covering additional automobiles.

GMC Syclone pickup truck1991 GMC Syclone pickup truck

Cars and trucks from the late 80s and the newer automobiles from 2011 and 2012 are as troublesome as the target vehicles we focus on.

In addition to this information we added a fun auto repair skills test to the site. It's a quick five question multiple choice quiz visitors find challenging. See how your car repair knowledge stacks up against other visitors. 

This is still under development, but we're working on a muscle cars section featuring killer rides from the sixties and early seventies. This is a passion of mine. I've written over 200 articles on this subject. You'll find them over at the ThoughtCo classic cars section.

I enjoy writing about classic cars, working on them and helping people get the most out of their vintage rides. If you're interested in learning more about the certified technician that runs this place visit the about Mark the auto mechanic profile page.

The Definition of an Old Car

The definition of an old car is often in the eye of the beholder. To complicate matters even further it might also depend on where you live in the world.

First we'll start by defining what a classic car is. Many collectors would consider a classic ride in the 35 to 65-year-old range. Therefore, for the sake of argument, we'll plaster a definition of old on one that's newer than 30 years young, but older than 10 years.

This is just my opinion and we welcome your interpretation of the term. I can tell you that when my neighbor gets into their 2008 Nissan Maxima they don't consider it an old ride. This brings us back to the concept that age is often in the eye of the beholder.

The Importance of Aging Automobiles

Chevrolet 2004 SSRChevrolet 2004 SSR (Super Sport Roadster)

Now that we've clarified the difference between a classic automobile and an old one let's discuss why these problem cars are so important to us.

Unless you live in the big city with an efficient mass transit system you need reliable transportation to get through your everyday life.

Unfortunately, young and first-time drivers often find it necessary to buy an old car with high mileage.

Odometer readings over 100k are considered high mileage units. The big problem is when this type of mileage is partnered up with an unknown maintenance history.

Industry experts refer to these money pits as an entry-level vehicle. Sometimes it's a cruel twist of fate that these problem cars can often experience the highest maintenance and repair costs of any street legal form of transportation.

In the retail auto repair business they have a nickname for these entry-level rides. Mechanics call them gravy boats. Here's a little background on where this moniker comes from. Technicians call easy and lucrative car repairs gravy.

The old car you just rolled in with is filled with these types of needed services. Every where they look they see things that actually need attention. These kinds of cars have put food on the table for many families. But that might not make you feel any better when you receive a repair estimate?

What to do with the Problem Cars

As I explained on the about me page, my old ride forced me into becoming a mechanic. However, I don't suspect that path is right for everybody.

The informational articles posted here are written in the standard complaint, cause and correction format. They also target specific problem cars or common issues that plague older automobiles.

Often, when one model experiences a particular malfunction many of the same year and model cars will suffer the same consequences. Even though manufacturers don't like to call it an inherent problem they'll issue a technical service bulletin so dealership level mechanics become aware of these common car problems.

You the owner should also be aware of these scenarios. In addition, we make an effort to find out if updated parts or enhancement kits are available to solve the issue. As a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program we offer these unique replacement components at fair prices directly from the site.

Even if you don't break out your wrenches and fix the malfunction yourself these articles can help you deal with the auto service center so you don't get taken for a ride.