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The Most Expensive Vehicle Repairs

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Vehicle damage of any kind is rarely inexpensive to fix. Certain components of a vehicle can often exceed the value of the vehicle in replacement and repair costs. Damages are sometimes so extensive that the vehicle is considered ‘totaled’ since the cost of repairs exceed the value of the vehicle. While this may be an extreme example, as vehicles age and succumb to wear, certain essential parts need to be repaired and replaced. Some of these parts and systems can be expensive, even after seemingly minor damage or malfunctioning. For very high mileage vehicles, repair costs may also exceed the value of the vehicle.

The nature of many of the specialized parts used to manufacture modern vehicles can mean that a seemingly simple repair or replacement can cost thousands of dollars. While the part may not be exorbitant, labor costs can run up the bill for certain work. The many electronic components in newer vehicles tend to inflate the repair costs as well. The extent of damage, in addition to the make, model, and condition of the vehicle all contribute to the cost too. When it comes to components of the vehicle, here are a few of the most pricey damages to repair.

Blown Engines


Engine problems are expensive and serious. An engine that has experienced internal damage will need comprehensive repair or replacement. Problems like broken rods, damaged valves, or oil leaks can be expensive to address. High mileage can also be a cause for engine replacement, in addition to problems with other vital components like transmissions and radiators. In these situations, it is important to consider the value of your car in relation to the costs of this type of work. Engine replacements can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $4,000. The ultimate cost depends on the type of vehicle, engine, and the shop.

Transmission Damages


The transmission is one of the most vital components of a vehicle and, as such, costly to repair or replace. Typical problems with transmissions come down to issues with the transmission fluid and overusing the clutch in manual transmissions. Failing to have the transmission fluid changed as often as necessary can cause transmission problems. The fluid does not need to be changed as often as other fluids, so it is often easy to forget about. To replace the transmission, costs can be as highly as $2,000 to $3,000. Repairs can be slightly lower but still run in the range of $1,000 to $2,000. You should, of course, weigh the costs of repairs with the value of the vehicle when considering repairing or replacing a transmission.

Head Gasket Malfunction


The head gasket is an important engine component that seals the engine cylinders and prevents oil and coolant from leaking, aiding in compression. A malfunction in the gasket can be a result of timing, cooling, or other manufacturing problems. A blown gasket can cause coolant to leak and engines to overheat. This problem is serious and costly. Repair is extensive and though the gasket itself is not an extremely expensive part, labor costs run high. The head gasket repair costs can run between $1,200 and $1,600 depending on the extent of damage and the particular shop.


Proper maintenance of your vehicle through regular services and only using quality gas and oil will help you avoid these costly repairs, keeping your vehicle running longer.