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With the economy the way it is most people can’t afford to buy a new car or truck. These days most people do only immediate and necessary repairs to their vehicles. Most can’t afford too many added expenses to their already tight budget. Even though times are tough most people still want to drive around in a vehicle that looks good. What choices do they have? One is to buy a new vehicle but that means a big debt for years. The least expensive and most affordable choice is to fix it up - restore it. There are many different things that you can have done to your debt free vehicle that will make it look new again. Although these little repairs and additions will cost a little money it is well worth it.

By now you must have heard about the Canadian “Retire Your Ride” program. For a few hundred dollars you are encouraged to retire your ride. You are told that by doing so you are saving the environment as you will be removing your old polluting vehicle from our roads. What you aren’t told is the real reason for this program. They want you to give up your vehicle for a few hundred dollars. A vehicle they know you own out right. A vehicle that you no longer make monthly payments towards. They want to you give up your cheap mode of transportation and your financial freedom. They want you to go in debt again. They want you to buy a brand new, drastically overpriced gas guzzlers that spews out as much pollution as your current vehicle. They don’t want you to know that you can turn your old ride into a more fuel efficient and low emission vehicle for thousands of dollars less than a brand new vehicle.

By spending a fraction of the cost of a new vehicle you can restore your debt free vehicle to its original condition. You can buy aftermarket body parts for a fraction of the price of a new vehicle. In Canada, the leaders in providing auto body parts, at a very competitive price, includes Pro Body Parts and Cross Canada. You can take those “new” aftermarket auto body parts to any auto body shop, or have them order them for you, and they can restore your vehicle. They can make your car or truck look like the day you bought it.

Instead of high monthly payments and higher insurance premiums that your are guaranteed to get with retiring your ride and being forced to buy a new, overpriced new car or truck it makes more economical sense to restore your ride, don’t retire it.

Right now you own your old car or truck. That means its 100% yours. That means you are not in debt to any bank or credit company or to any lender. So far the cost to you to keep your vehicle is $0. Now if you were to take you car or truck in and retire it you no longer have a ride. You no longer own a vehicle. What new vehicle you can buy for the $300 they give you for retiring your working ride? There are absolutely none! Immediately you are stranded unless you are willing to take the bus or pay for an expensive cab ride to and from work, to and from the grocery store, to and from the daycare, to and from your children’s school. They tricked you. Now you are forced into buying or leasing a brand new over priced vehicle. That is if you are deemed eligible to get a loan for a brand new vehicle, a loan that is based on your earnings. So if you have a low paying job good luck getting any bank to give you a loan for a brand new car or truck. Because of the sticker price these days for a new car or truck you must show the bank or financing company that you are able to pay at least an extra $300 a month towards car payments. Add on at least another $150 a month for full insurance coverage that the banks will require for the duration of the loan. Add $100 per hour for regular vehicle maintenance costs that the dealerships require you to pay until you’ve paid off the loan in full or fulfilled your leasing agreement. Then there is the cost of fuel - currently hovering around $1 per liter. Add the cost to have a new vehicle (a least $600 per month) and you will come to realize very quickly that you cannot afford the new vehicle. You’ll wish you kept your older vehicle that you owned, debt free.

What do you really get for retiring your ride? You get, on average, just $300. In order to get that amount, the vehicle you are retiring must be in working condition. $300 for a working vehicle is a rip off. If you retire your ride you also add an unaffordable debt to your already tight budget and all the headaches that goes with trying to keep up with you monthly commitment for your new ride.

Is it worth it? For you, a big fat no. For them it means they’ve unloaded another overpriced vehicle, a vehicle that will have the very same mechanical problems as your debt free vehicle. Your debt free vehicle needs oil changes, new tires and brake changes, so will a brand new vehicle. Your debt free vehicle needs fuel, so does any brand new vehicle. Your debt free vehicle will need maintenance and repairs, so will a brand new vehicle. The difference between keeping your vehicle and buying a new vehicle is that for a brand new vehicle repairs and maintenance will cost a whole lot more.

Your most economically and environmentally viable solution is Restore Your Vehicle, Don’t Retire It. A new fender or hood or bumper from Canadian owned and operated auto body parts distributors like Pro Body Parts and Cross Canada, to replace the rusted or dented ones, is the first step to restoring your older vehicle. Once you have new metal on your older vehicle you can have a fresh coat of paint applied to it. A fresh coat of paint with a few coats of clear coat will make any older vehicle look like new. Now that you have it looking like new its time for an engine tune up - oil change, new spark plugs, new spark plug wires, new air filter, new oil filter, new fuel filter and even a new exhaust, new distributor, MAP sensor, O2 sensors, and MAFF sensor. Replacing any of these parts will immediately lower your carbon emissions and better your vehicle’s fuel mileage. The last step will be to install a FuelReducer mpg+. A FuelReducer mpg+ will not only reduce your fuel consumption, which means increasing your vehicle’s fuel mileage, it will also lower your emissions.

Does “Retire your Ride” make any sense now?

When you are ready to restore your ride it makes good economic sense to buy your mechanical and auto body parts from Canadian owned and operated suppliers. When you buy from Canadian suppliers the money stays in Canada. When you buy from US suppliers the money goes to the United States. When you buy Canadian you are helping the Canadian economy grow stronger. When the Canadian economy is strong there are more job opportunities for Canadians.

Don’t be fooled by companies claiming to be Canadian. US companies have been buying Canadian companies at a record pace since Stephen Harper became minority Prime Minster of Canada and the results are Canadian jobs being lost and the standard of living for Canadian employees being slashed in order for the US head offices to rake in more profits. When US companies buy Canadian companies there are always big job loses. Lately US companies have been buying very successful Canadian companies just to close them down - killing their Canadian competition - perfect examples are the Hamilton Ontario Steel mills. When US companies buy Canadian companies they immediately ignore Canadian Labor Laws, robbing Canadian employees of their rightful earnings, benefits and pensions.

When you restore you ride you win. Think about it. You own your vehicle outright. You are debt free, at least as far as your transportation is concerned. Why would you give up your perfectly good working vehicle for a few hundred dollars just so that they can put you in debt for years by buying their overpriced, gas guzzling, high maintenance new car or truck you can’t afford in the first place? Keep it, restore it and save your money. And remember support Canadian owned and operated companies for all your automotive repairs, both mechanical and auto body.