5 habits that ruin your car's value

Buying a new -- or even a new-to-you -- car often is a pricey proposition. Here are some steps to avoid if you want your ride to retain its value.

 of 7
 of 7


Oct 7, 2013 7:40PM
These things are not nearly as bad as smoking in a vehicle. Odor very very hard to eliminate. Should be #1
Oct 7, 2013 8:23PM
Didn't see anything mentioned about smoking, ABSOLUTELY THE WORSE, YUKKKK!!!!!!!! HATE buying cars that smell like smoke!!!!!!
Oct 7, 2013 7:49PM
I don't stress over the value of my car- cars are not exactly something you "invest" in. I own a car to get from point A to point B in relative comfort. I will drive it until it doesn't do that anymore. (and I bought new, got 0% apr and paid it off in 2 years... it wasn't expensive but it does what I need it to do).
Oct 7, 2013 8:48PM
Worst habit is listening to the garbage posted online!
Oct 7, 2013 8:50PM
another "car buying" article by some one that has no clue! Eating in your car, smoking in your care are two of the worst things you can do Value wise.
Oct 8, 2013 12:20AM
I sure wouldn't take any advice from a wannabe automotive journalist who doesn't know how to spell, "avoiding redlining or hard breaking."  LOL!!!  That's "braking" bozo!  Unless you really mean to break the car!  Jeez,... 
Oct 7, 2013 8:57PM
but seriously, the worst thing you can do is buy an extended warranty, gap insurance, paint protection, windshield warranty etc. That is how people get upside down, you add several thousand dollars to the loan.
Oct 7, 2013 9:49PM
Oct 8, 2013 7:37AM
Another habit that ruins car value:  parking it outside all of the time.  The weather is tough on a car, including places that aren't easily seen.  If you don't have or can't afford a heated garage then consider a carport to at least keep the direct rain off your car.  But if your car is in the driveway because your garage is too full of stuff, which is more valuable - your car or that stuff?
Oct 7, 2013 9:23PM
What a wasted article.  the only really good piece of advice they gave is keeping the records.  That is a definite plus side when you go to sell it yourself.  As far as trade in value, nothing here helps.  And advising people to go to the dealership.  Unless it is warranty work not a plus at all.  Ask your friends do some due diligence and find yourself a reliable honest mechanic.  Dealerships are over-priced and the as far as I'm concerned in most cases if the computer can't tell them what is wrong they are useless.  There are exceptions but in most cases going to the dealer is nothing but an exercise in rip out an replace until they hit the right problem.
Oct 8, 2013 1:01AM
All of these are POOR examples Only cause its so generic and lacking in detail and evewn worse they never even mentioned smoking Thats like the #1 killer of value
Oct 8, 2013 7:26AM
I see the old "break in oil" myth is still alive and well. I'll just stay with Ford recommendations when it comes to service.
Oct 8, 2013 10:13AM
Um, the #1 way is if you smoke in the car.
Oct 7, 2013 8:27PM

I change oil and  filters myself, spark plugs too.

If by strangers you mean others than the vehicle dealers, perhaps you do not mind paying the exorbitant prices dealers charge. And if you plan to trade your vehicle with that same dealer you would never get a decent price for your well-taken care-of car. 

It costs $200 to change de splugs at the dealership, but the main mechanic said: your car has only 60,000 miles come back when it reaches 100,000 miles. So I changed them my self for 65.00 my car runs like new now. Advising that readers go to dealers is not a sound advise, unless you have a dealership yourself...

Oct 8, 2013 9:50AM

99 is right, will not even consider a car with even a hint of smoke regardless of the price.

Oct 8, 2013 7:07AM
Sadly, automobiles are the second biggest investment you'll make (if you send kids to college that bumps it to third).  Price of cars would be considerably less if they were not advertised as much since that adds to consumer costs.  Mad Men can sell eskimos ice, we are such suckers.  Rather than use cars to get from point A to point B, we idolize them as animate objects and that's what is good for the economy, I guess.  They are necessary evils since we need to be mobile but I rarely make love to my car like so many other guys do....  Get a life, maintain it, but don't make it more than it is; rather, read a book, get involved with your kids, community and life.
Oct 7, 2013 8:03PM
Aftermarket parts have no effect on the vehicles warranty. Read up on the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act before you speak. Unless an aftermarket part directly causes a problem, no portion of the warranty can be voided. Even if the part does directly cause a problem, the manufacturer can only void the warranty on the parts affected. Burden of proof is on the manufacturer. If the owner chooses to sue, legal fees are on the manufacturer, regardless of the result.

Been there, Done that. Been modding cars for 18 years, never had a warranty voided, even in part.
Oct 7, 2013 7:47PM
I know it is not smart to buy new cars but I drove clunkers for years because I didn't have money for a new car....so now I do and I drive new cars and love the warranties. I don't agree with all these things they say "don't do" especially the early oil change thing.
Oct 7, 2013 8:37PM
Don't see a lot of good advise here, and I maintained a fleet of different vehicles without very many problems for over 27 yrs before retiring.
Oct 7, 2013 7:38PM
Lot of times people are upside down on their previous car and that goes into their next car loan. Making their new car seem to lose value but in reality its just the fact they paid more for the car then they should have. Worst thing you can do to a car to reduce value is customize so much that it makes the car less attractive to more buyers. For example putting big wheels and suspension upgrades may make a pick up look cool. It also means less when you trade. Other things can add to value like custom wheels, improved stereo, and other entertainment products. Done right, they can add to your enjoyment as the owner and increase value in a trade. Biggest value reduction has everything to do with the automobile itself.  Some vehicles are more in demand at times then others. When gas is high, large vehicles suffer. When gas becomes cheaper, the gas savers suffer a bit more.
Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.