Today, my car started overheating (was running perfectly fine for the past month, seemingly) so I checked the coolant and noticed it was practically empty. I brought it to a mechanic, who said that the issue is:

"Water leaking from between cylinder head and engine block under intake manifold."

They added sealwell to slow down the leak, and now the problem is slightly better but the car runs slightly on the hot side. They said that it honestly just wouldn't be economical for me to fix it now as it would cost around $800.

I'd called a reputable mechanic to get a quote on the problem and he also said that it would be expensive and not worth it for me to get it fixed. So should I cut my losses now and sell to an end-of-life car dealer? Or should I physically take it to another mechanic?

I'm in a bit of a remote area so it would be 2-3 hours drive to the next city, and I'm not sure how the car will hold up.

2 Answers 2


This is a question you'll have to answer for yourself. We cannot tell you to go out and buy a new (or new to you) car ... it just wouldn't fit in with how SE sites are done, especially this one.

What we can do, however, is help lead you to make your own decisions.

Questions you need to answer for yourself are:

  • Can you afford a new (or new to you) car?
  • Will the old vehicle service your needs if you fix it (will you consider it reliable after the fix)?
  • Will the payments on this new-ish car be acceptable?
  • How much can you expect to be putting into the old car? Will it be more that what you would pay for the new-ish car?
  • Would this be the first amount of major money you will have put into your old vehicle?
  • Is there a sentimental attachment to the old car? (Is the old car something you just really love?)

I'm sure you can come up with more questions on your own. I'm hoping this will help you down that road.

  • Not sure what ethics has to do with anything here.... Nov 13, 2014 at 18:13
  • @bobfandango ... Really, I wasn't thinking to well when I put that in there and agree with you. I have updated with something which makes a lot more sense. Thanks. Nov 14, 2014 at 20:53

Sounds like you are describing a blown head gasket and that repair price is reasonable. Kudos to the mechanics who refused to take your money for what must be an old and tired car. Cut your losses and unload it.

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