LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Older cars may be seen more frequently across roadways these days as more people are opting to hold onto their vehicles longer.
The trend could be an effect of the pandemic, as the prices of used vehicles have increased.
Yet, this is also leading to the cost of maintaining older vehicles.
Alex Vallejos of Precision Auto Tune Care said the advice his mechanics normally give to drivers to help their vehicles last longer is to do regular oil changes and tire rotations.
“A lot of vehicles just have a lot of abuse over time. A lot of neglected maintenance I would say pretty much is a lot of what we’re seeing,” Vallejos said.
Yet, some drivers have been listening a bit too well as the average age of a vehicle that’s on the road is 12 years old.
As people hold on longer to their cars, auto repair shops are having a hard time finding parts, searching further and wider than before.
Vallejos added that manufacturers are also no longer sending parts in a set, instead, they are separate.
“So we’re seeing that shrinkflation in a way where they’re taking things away but they’re charging us and you guys the same costs,” Vallejos said.
That is a factor contributing to higher labor costs for vehicle maintenance and repairs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, labor is rising at a faster rate than inflation.
Mark Almazan, manager of AA Auto Care in North Las Vegas, told 8 News Now they’ve increased prices from $100 to $140 per hour in comparison to last year for vehicle repairs.
“Older vehicles are harder to work on, they come with more problems,” Almazan said. “Sometimes working on an older vehicle can lead to more parts being replaced.”
Almazan advised those shopping for a new car to do their research if they plan to purchase a new vehicle.
“A lot of vehicles are being made with plastic components where they don’t tend to hold too well in the desert heat,” Almazan said.
According to Kelly Blue Book, the average price of buying a vehicle has gone up by 60% in the past decade.
Newer vehicles on average cost nearly $50,000, whereas on average pre-owned cars go for $28,000.