Bought a 2005 Toyota Corolla

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Perhaps I read too much into, overreacted. Sorry.

I'm living with a dead rear defroster and a burned out "Drive" indicator in my dashboard. If I won't fix those for myself then I certainly not fixing them for a sibling. :)
 
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On a $3k vehicle that is basic transportation - you keep it running. You don't make it look nicer (paint correction, really?) and do unnecessary work - just keep it in reliable, running condition. *shrug*
I actually probably would have flipped it for $8k, with $0 extra work, in this market.
 
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On a $3k vehicle that is basic transportation - you keep it running. You don't make it look nicer (paint correction, really?) and do unnecessary work - just keep it in reliable, running condition. *shrug*
I actually probably would have flipped it for $8k, with $0 extra work, in this market.
I don't understand this mentality. "It's old so let it look old"

Why?
 

dishdude

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I don't understand this mentality. "It's old so let it look old"

Why?

You can't polish a turd. It's an A to B car, it's not meant to look good, just get you around. I don't see the value in unnecessarily putting money, time or effort into something that is fully depreciated and might give up the ghost tomorrow.
 
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On a $3k vehicle that is basic transportation - you keep it running. You don't make it look nicer (paint correction, really?) and do unnecessary work - just keep it in reliable, running condition. *shrug*
I actually probably would have flipped it for $8k, with $0 extra work, in this market.
I am keeping my folk's 1998 Accord LX 4 banger alive for a friend who is a single Mom. Best deal in town. Otherwise I gotta buy some unknown vehicle that could be worse. Take care of 'em and they will take care of you.
 

The Critic

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Over a light bulb in the center stack? Its not the light behind the speedometer.

I guess I don’t get it. Around here that car would have three wheels in the grave. I guess if you enjoy tearing into things it makes sense, but it just takes one thing to break in the process and now the hvac knob stops working—and now you are in a worse place than when you started.
From the beginning, she was skeptical of this David Ramsey special, so minor (but blatantly obvious) issues tend to trigger her a bit. Especially ones that make the car look "janky." With that said, I think she is warming up to this car after the vandalism incident. She now realizes how easily (and frequently) cars can be damaged in a big-city environment.

I'm impressed you can get little parts like a HVAC knob from the dealer. As for the hood, autowreckers? Even if it doesn't match perfectly, I doubt a non-car person would notice, and a car-person wouldn't care.
That is one good thing about Toyota. Their after-sales support is pretty **** good, even for a model that has been out of production for almost 15 years. That knob was in-stock at our local PDC, so it was only 1 day out.

I don't understand this mentality. "It's old so let it look old"

Why?
I think the mentality is shaped by the repair options available to the average owner. If you have to pay $200/hr for someone to repair a vehicle, then by default, only safety-related items will get repaired.
 
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From the beginning, she was skeptical of this David Ramsey special, so minor (but blatantly obvious) issues tend to trigger her a bit. Especially ones that make the car look "janky." With that said, I think she is warming up to this car after the vandalism incident. She now realizes how easily (and frequently) cars can be damaged in a big-city environment.
Fair enough. With this unexpected vandalism run-in, it may be turning into more of a learning experience than planned.
 
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She now realizes how easily (and frequently) cars can be damaged in a big-city environment.

From my experiences living in the city, a car is key for getting the heck out of Dodge but it’s more of a pain than an necessity. If I had to do it all over again, the cars stay with my parents or I spring for off-street parking(if it’s reasonable).

Many in cities will do absolutely fine with public transit, a bike or Uber and if they need a car occasionally, things like Zipcar or the local Hertz.
 
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From my experiences living in the city, a car is key for getting the heck out of Dodge but it’s more of a pain than an necessity. If I had to do it all over again, the cars stay with my parents or I spring for off-street parking(if it’s reasonable).

Many in cities will do absolutely fine with public transit, a bike or Uber and if they need a car occasionally, things like Zipcar or the local Hertz.
I've always enjoyed driving in the city. Makes you a better driver as you have to fight traffic and be good at parallel parking. I used to have a friend who would be surprised at how quickly I could parallel park a car and liked to watch so he could marvel at it. When I'm on point, I just back into it and pull forward and I'm parked. I also know people who can't parallel park a car. (The key is stuffing your back wheels into the spot and don't worry about the front). I even do a city method where I will just partially pull into a spot directly and then pull out at a harder angle to get into the spot. That stops people from pulling in behind you to block you out from getting the spot so they can get it.
 
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I've always enjoyed driving in the city. Makes you a better driver as you have to fight traffic and be good at parallel parking. I used to have a friend who would be surprised at how quickly I could parallel park a car and liked to watch so he could marvel at it.
I will also agree with that as well - my parallel parking skills have gotten better, as much as I preferred to ride my bike(and city bike riding takes nerves of steel and your head needs to be on a swivel) or take the bus. I’ve also gotten smart about avoiding parking tickets.
 

The Critic

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From my experiences living in the city, a car is key for getting the heck out of Dodge but it’s more of a pain than an necessity. If I had to do it all over again, the cars stay with my parents or I spring for off-street parking(if it’s reasonable).

Many in cities will do absolutely fine with public transit, a bike or Uber and if they need a car occasionally, things like Zipcar or the local Hertz.
I think she was quoted $250/mo for off-street parking, but there is a waiting list.
 

01rangerxl

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You can't polish a turd. It's an A to B car, it's not meant to look good, just get you around. I don't see the value in unnecessarily putting money, time or effort into something that is fully depreciated and might give up the ghost tomorrow.

As someone who has purchased a Deluxe Marti Report, custom floor mats, and Weather Tech custom fit cargo liner for a $2500 Explorer, I disagree. 🤣
 
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Technically, my sister did. But the car is mine until reconditioning is complete.

It is a 2005 CE with 140K miles. Paid $3K.

My sister lives in the city and needed an inexpensive car for weekend errands. Her plan is to keep the car for a few years and upgrade to something newer. :rolleyes:

This Corolla was purchased from a friend of mine. It was their family's spare car for 3.5 years and was no longer needed. They only drove it for 15k miles for the duration of their ownership.

When my friend's family purchased this car in 2018, they had me bring all maintenance up-to-date. I also worked on it a few times over the last few years. According to my records, it received the following work over the last few years:

4/2018, 125K - ATF Flush (Amsoil SS), Brake Fluid Flush, Spark Plugs, Drive Belt, Coolant Service, Reboot Passenger Side Axle, VCG, Air/Cabin Filters, Timing Chain Tensioner O-Ring, HLR, Intake Manifold Gasket, Radiator Cap and 1 caliper.
8/2018 - Front Pads (OE) and A/M Rotors, Rear Shoes (OE) and A/M drums
3/2019, 132K - A/M Front Lower Control Arms and Alignment

Mechanically, the car is in decent shape. Cosmetically, it is a bit below average, mainly because of the paint that is starting to fail on the roof.

My sister wants this car to be reliable for the next few years. She also plans to take some semi-long trips with it. After inspecting the car and with those goals in mind, she has agreed to move forward with the following items:

- Oil and Filter Change w/HPL Engine Cleaner
- Installed a new Kirkland 35 AGM Battery
- Installed 4 new Michelin Defender T+H tires
- Replaced Engine and Cabin Air Filters
- Replaced Wiper Blades
- Removed the fuel injectors for bench cleaning (clogged injectors are an issue on high-mileage 1ZZ-FE engines)
- Perform a Headlight Restoration
- Perform a Brake Fluid Flush
- Perform a Power Steering Fluid Flush
- Replace a failed Exhaust Donut Gasket (manifold to cat converter connection)
- Clean the Throttle Body and Replace Gasket
- Reseal the Timing Cover due to light seepage at the timing cover to cylinder head "t-joint." Will also replace the crank seal, VCG and timing chain tensioner o-ring in conjunction with the repair.
- Replace the Water Pump and Thermostat using OEM parts
- Replace the Radiator and Radiator Hoses using A/M parts
- Install a Sony XAV-AX150 Stereo and Boyo Back-Up Camera; @nthach will be helping me with this
- Install a new set of factory carpeted floor mats

Total investment will be $1650.

For $4650 (plus taxes and registration fees), I think this car should serve her well for a few years. When she is done with it, she should still be able to recoup most of her investment.

Here are some pictures of the car after a preliminary wash and vacuum to triage its condition. At some point it will receive a full interior detail:
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Sounds good. Def not a Toyota guy here but you did well buying a used car from someone you know ..thus aware of its maintenance history etc . Hope your sister has great luck w/it!
 

The Critic

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R/R door’s quarter window was broken. The thieves stole the radio and destroyed the backup camera’s harness.

So I replaced the window:

83A6A406-29AC-4A91-B982-19808AABB4CE.jpeg

@nthach came and helped me install the finest Boss BE7ACP-C.

0278296D-58C7-4E4C-A741-C8ADE8EBEC52.jpeg

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A52CCF55-2AC9-4863-B036-4B44DC2BF7B5.jpeg


My sister insisted on replacing the radio since she “needs” a back-up camera. I disagree, but not my car…
 
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so what happens when they hit it again? rinse and repeat???
My SIL had these problems in Vancouver, after broken window 2 she didn't lock the car, and after it still gets a window broken, you leave a window open just to make it clear its not locked... She had covered parking.
Do they still make detachable face radios? maybe get one of those next time. I don't think my SIL ever had a radio stolen in her Mazda3? They were just looking for change.
She had an apartment in an building right at on the waterfront, so the hassle was kind of worth it at the time.
 
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My SIL had these problems in Vancouver, after broken window 2 she didn't lock the car, and after it still gets a window broken, you leave a window open just to make it clear its not locked... She had covered parking.
Do they still make detachable face radios? maybe get one of those next time. I don't think my SIL ever had a radio stolen in her Mazda3? They were just looking for change.
She had an apartment in an building right at on the waterfront, so the hassle was kind of worth it at the time.
Only the high-end Pioneer AVH-4x00NEX/DMH-W4500NEX has that still. But it’s a $800 deck. It’s super easy to take a radio out of a older Civic/Corolla/Camry/Accord. Aftermarket dash kits are all plastic vs. OEM - but not all radios can use OEM brackets and the dash kits don’t always detach to allow reuse of the OEM brackets. I’ve gotten lucky with 3 cars to able to do so.

If you’re stealing a Boss or Jensen, you’re an idiot. That’s like a looter walking out of Walmart or Worst Buy with a Onn or Insignia house-brand TV.
 
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