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Hello,
6 years ago I got a 140 pound dog and a 2005 Honda Element with 60,000 miles.
The mileage now is 115,00.
In these 6 years I've fixed or gotten - Oil changes (of course), new tires, New battery, alternator, radiator, water pump, window motor, rear brakes, front and rear struts, air conditioning recharge, ignition redone by locksmith,
another radiator, front engine mounts, back bushings and another battery. I figured I've spent about $8,000 on the car.
I really love the car but is it normal to spend $8000 in 6 years? Before the Element, I had a Toyota truck that never had any problems and all I did was basic maintainence.
Did I buy a LEMON???
 

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Maybe, or maybe you're replacing stuff some mechanic talked you into and not things you really needed to replace. I have 185k on my 2004 E that I bought new and I've never replaced the struts...or engine mounts...or alternator...or radiator...or, well, you get my point. Which is maybe you could have waited on a lot of the repairs you had done.

I also had Toyota trucks(s), two of them, and they were pretty much maintenance free. But so's my E.
 

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oil change, tires, brakes, battery and maybe struts are all pretty well maintenance. I would agree with element guy I have an 03 with 279,000 miles and other than mentioned stuff still has original radiator, water pump and air cond. I also have an 08 with 90,000 and has had nothing other than maintenance
 

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We migrated to Honda from Chevy and GMC - trucks and suburbans - to an '05 Pilot and my '08 Element. Mostly it was due to the price of gas and the way people kept telling us how dependable the Honda's were. Frankly, compare them to the GMC's and the Pilot was a lemon and my Element is about the same or a little less reliable. I still love my Element despite the faults. The Pilot? It's history - replaced by a Toyota which seems to be everything Honda claimed theirs was. Happy surprise!
 

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I also wonder how much of that maintenance was caused by poor maintenance. Ive got 340k on an 05, 2 radiators and a waterpump? Youve only filled them with the blue honda antifreeze, right? Combine it with the green stuff, and ive heard it gets goopy...
Ive had to do a starter in mine, and the locks are finally giving me issues.
Motor mount and struts are due, along with compliance bushings...but 340k, Expected.
Could still hang meat in the car, a/c is ridiculous. That said the ol'ladys 04 is warmer, needed struts, and a starter. Also 'only' 190k on hers.
 

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Hello,
6 years ago I got a 140 pound dog and a 2005 Honda Element with 60,000 miles.
The mileage now is 115,00.
In these 6 years I've fixed or gotten - Oil changes (of course), new tires, New battery, alternator, radiator, water pump, window motor, rear brakes, front and rear struts, air conditioning recharge, ignition redone by locksmith,
another radiator, front engine mounts, back bushings and another battery. I figured I've spent about $8,000 on the car.
I really love the car but is it normal to spend $8000 in 6 years? Before the Element, I had a Toyota truck that never had any problems and all I did was basic maintainence.
Did I buy a LEMON???
Maybe I have 253,000 on a 2005 and have had no major problems. I did change the strut mounts and put a new A/C in it. I have been driving it 11 years and bought it with 80,000. I did hear my transmission may go out some day as my mechanic said it registered on the computer. This may be the end for me at 3,000 to fix. But with only 115,000 that's a baby.
 

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Hard to say w/out knowing how hard you're runnibg the E. I bought my E used and needed to change out the slippery cheapo Chinese tires and replace the battery in the 2 yrs I've had it. At 130k it could probably use new struts and engines mounts but that can wait. 2 radiators in 6 yrs sounds nuts tho, how trustworthy is your mechanic or are u just taking it to a jiffy-lube type chain?
 

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Sounds like you're playing catchup on the previous owners poor maint. habits. Not sure I understand the need for motor mounts but I guess it happens. I also agree your mechanic sounds like he's padding the bill a bit.
 

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I have a 2011 that I bought used w/ 60k. It's now 108k, and I've replaced the struts, tires and battery along w/ regular maintenance. It seems fine. Mostly freeway/ travel driving. One question tho - after not driving it for a while - like 3 weeks, the breaks will make a soft rubbing sort of noise when I initially break. It seems to go away after a while. What might this be? Thanks!
 

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I have a 2011 that I bought used w/ 60k. It's now 108k, and I've replaced the struts, tires and battery along w/ regular maintenance. It seems fine. Mostly freeway/ travel driving. One question tho - after not driving it for a while - like 3 weeks, the breaks will make a soft rubbing sort of noise when I initially break. It seems to go away after a while. What might this be? Thanks!
Are you in a wet climate? If so i would guess rust on the rotars.
 

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Original owner of my 08 LX AWD here. Outside of regular maintenance I've had to replace a front-end ball joint that was causing shimmy during braking (not warped rotors).

Best upgrade I've done was the Accord brakes.
 

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I have a 2011 that I bought used w/ 60k. It's now 108k, and I've replaced the struts, tires and battery along w/ regular maintenance. It seems fine. Mostly freeway/ travel driving. One question tho - after not driving it for a while - like 3 weeks, the breaks will make a soft rubbing sort of noise when I initially break. It seems to go away after a while. What might this be? Thanks!
No real problem with sound of your brakes. When a car is inactive (for like 3 weeks!) the bare metal surfaces on the brake rotors will get a little surface rust forming on them. (This is especially true if you live in a high humidity area, like I do here in FL.) Then the first few times you brake when using the car again, your brake pads are simply removing that surface rust through normal abrasion. And that is what you are hearing. And yes the sound will go away once that surface rust is removed from the rotors.

But, even assuming the brakes were about new when you bought the car at 60K miles, the 48K miles you have put on it since should warrant that you at least check to see how much brake pad material you have remaining.

Better to err on the safe side! : - )
 

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No real problem with sound of your brakes. When a car is inactive (for like 3 weeks!) the bare metal surfaces on the brake rotors will get a little surface rust forming on them. (This is especially true if you live in a high humidity area, like I do here in FL.) Then the first few times you brake when using the car again, your brake pads are simply removing that surface rust through normal abrasion. And that is what you are hearing. And yes the sound will go away once that surface rust is removed from the rotors.

But, even assuming the brakes were about new when you bought the car at 60K miles, the 48K miles you have put on it since should warrant that you at least check to see how much brake pad material you have remaining.

Better to err on the safe side! : - )
Thanks for the info. I mostly have the e parked in Portland OR and in Tucson AZ (my other vehicle is a bicycle :) and in betwen these places, I drive all over the country in varying climates. I have had the breaks checked, and will again during my upcoming oil change. I'm also following the recommended upkeep - belts, etc. - based on miles driven. I will be moving to MX for a year to conduct a residency and want to make sure all is well!
 

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Thanks for the info. I mostly have the e parked in Portland OR and in Tucson AZ (my other vehicle is a bicycle :) and in betwen these places, I drive all over the country in varying climates. I have had the breaks checked, and will again during my upcoming oil change. I'm also following the recommended upkeep - belts, etc. - based on miles driven. I will be moving to MX for a year to conduct a residency and want to make sure all is well!
Import Repair Center on Lombard out here in St. Johns area is a great place to have any Element work done. Brady is super cool dude and knows his Hondas.

Ps..

Thinking of retiring to Tucson... would like to chat some day and get your input.
Rob
 

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Import Repair Center on Lombard out here in St. Johns area is a great place to have any Element work done. Brady is super cool dude and knows his Hondas.

Ps..

Thinking of retiring to Tucson... would like to chat some day and get your input.
Rob
Thanks Rob-
I will remember Repair Center when I return to pdx. I use a place in Goosehollow where my apt is.
Tucson is interesting - I come through here to visit my elderly mom - the city is groovy, and booming. Bidding wars on housing is beginning --- a gross trend.
 

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Thanks Rob-
I will remember Repair Center when I return to pdx. I use a place in Goosehollow where my apt is.
Tucson is interesting - I come through here to visit my elderly mom - the city is groovy, and booming. Bidding wars on housing is beginning --- a gross trend.
Wow... bidding wars in Tucson... bummer.
I look at housing on Redfin/Zillow in that area a lot.
I'm shocked at how cheap houses with pools are.

I'm about 5 years away from retirement.. I'm waiting for a housing bust to happen before a purchase in that area... don't want to purchase on the highs.

Thanks!
 

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My mechanic (and my spreadsheet) tell me that an average of $100/month for repairs & maintenance on an old car is typical.

$8,000 in 6 years is about $111/month.

But as others have posted above, some people seem to drive cars for 5-10 years without issues. I've never driven a car that was old and didn't need something fixed every 8-12 months. I must be jinxed. Or being had. But I think my guy is honest.

There always seems to be a ball joint, or a brake part, or something that goes. Rarely catastrophic, but always a repair.

I bought a 2006 EX-P with 156,900 miles in March 2017.

Upon purchase, I had to fix the following (some of which was not indicated in the detailed inspection I paid for):

March 2017 (156,900):
Ball joints repair $135.00
Control arm shaft & bushing repair $120.00
Alternator drive belt repair $75.00
Wheel Bearing right rear repair $375.00
Sway Bar Link repair $110.00 (by choice to eliminate a squeak)

Since then, aside from oil changes, a set of new tires Dec 2018, I have had to do the following:

May 2018 (175,500):
rear brake calipers repair $300.00
front brake pins repair $125.00

May 2019 (194,250):
alternator replacement repair $367.31

Oct 2019 (196,305):
ball joint (front lower) repair $54.32
steering knuckle remove/replace (labor) repair $127.56

About $1,800 total. 2.75 years owned.

My exhaust is shot, and estimated at $550 to replace. And I have a brake job due, which is another $550 estimated.
 
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