Should You Fix Up Your Old Car Before Selling It?

You’ve finally decided to sell your old car and you’re wondering if it would be better to fix it up before selling it. If you’re not sure your car will even be worth enough money to justify the time and money you put into fixing it up, it’s time to make a decision.

If you are going to sell your car, there are things that you should do in order to make sure you get the most money as possible out of it. One of those things is to take your car to a professional to have it washed, cleaned, and detailed. No one is going to want to buy a car that doesn’t look great and has that weird french fry smell, so the investment of having the professional clean out your car for you will definitely be worth it. So, what are some things that the car detailers are going to do for your car? This article will help you figure out whether it’s worth it to fix up your old car before selling it or if you should just let it go as-is and consider something new instead.

Repair Your Car If You Know a Trustworthy Mechanic

It might be tempting to sell your clunker right away, but you might make more money if you take care of one last problem before selling. There are some issues that you can fix yourself (for example, replacing a headlight), but other problems—like an engine that won’t start—require taking it to a mechanic. If you know someone who is trustworthy and knowledgeable when it comes to fixing cars, take your car to them. You could learn how to do basic maintenance on your own, but for big jobs like fixing an engine or transmission, it’s best to bring in a professional. It could save you time and money if something goes wrong later on.

Repair Your Car If It Still Has a Few Good Years

If your car isn’t worth much on paper, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have some life left in it. If you get your car fixed up by a professional mechanic, not only will you be able to sell your car for a lot more money—you may also be able to keep driving it for a few more years. Repairs don’t always equal instant death in terms of value! Before tossing out an old car, consider a little DIY elbow grease.

Sell the Car If the Repairs Are Too Costly

If you’re getting your car fixed at a shop, it should be relatively easy to determine whether or not repairs are feasible. However, if you’re fixing something yourself or making repairs with friends and family, look for other clues. If your vehicle is old and has been driven for hundreds of thousands of miles, chances are there’s not much left in terms of its value. If that’s the case, then paying $1,000 to fix an oil leak probably won’t get you much return on investment — financially or personally.

If Your Car Doesn’t Work, Sell It

Rather than spending time and money trying to get a broken-down vehicle working, you’re better off selling it as is. If a buyer still wants it after seeing your listing photos, they can choose to buy it. Likewise, if the car is broken beyond repair, a local junk vehicle buyer for cash may pay you a few hundred dollars to take it off your hands. This is a great way to get your car off of your property if there is truly no way to repair it.

Maybe you’ve decided that your old car is too old, too rusted, or too unreliable to be worth keeping around, and you’re planning on selling it soon. If so, you’re probably wondering whether you should take the time to fix up your car before selling it in order to get more money out of it when you go to sell it.


One of the things that they are going to do is deodorize the car for you. There are various things that they can do to do that. One is that they can use an enzyme spray that can help break down the smells, especially if they are associated with stains. The enzyme spray will not only break down the smell, but it can also make it easier to clean the stain.

Crevice Cleaning

Another thing that the detailers are going to do is make sure that they clean out all the various cracks, crevices, and nooks. That means they are going to get down in between the seatbacks and bottoms and get all that stuff that has fallen down and gotten stuck there. They will also get down in between the front seats and the center console and under the seats. Nooks, crevices, and cracks will also include the space between the dashboard and the windshield and in the heating vents. There are special vacuum tools that will allow the detailer to get down into those crevices without having to use their hands and risking getting hurt.

Shampoo the Seats

Another thing that they are going to be able to do is shampoo the seats and carpeting in your car. It doesn’t matter if you have fabric or leather seat coverings, they will be able to wash them and make sure that they look as close to new as possible.

If you are going to sell your car, you want to make sure that you are going to get back as much money for it as possible. Taking it to an automatic car wash and letting the professionals detail it and wash it for you will leave you with a car that is going to look its very best and make a good impression.