DIY mechanics...decrease in value? | FerrariChat

DIY mechanics...decrease in value?

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by bkaird1, Nov 16, 2003.

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  1. bkaird1

    bkaird1 Karting

    Nov 7, 2003
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Full Name:
    Just wondering what the experience is from owners who do their own service work. I know checking all of the service documentation for a car is important when considering buying it and was curious if doing your own work decreases the value of the car when/if you decide to sell it. Does it depend on the model?

  2. carguy

    carguy F1 Rookie

    Oct 30, 2002
    Alabama (was Mich.)
    Full Name:
    That is a very good question...and one I'd like to know that answer to as I'm one of those DYI'ers. One thing I would like to say about this is that when working on your own car, you take more time and tend to little details that a shop may not due to time constraints. I know I went way beyond what I could expect a shop to do on my car. But most experienced mechanics would also be able to detect problems or pending problems before a novice like me there is an advantage to having proffessionals work on your car. In general I feel that most service work is over rated, but there are shops out there who I'm sure are worth every penny of the cost and then some. But I think "good" shops are hard to find, and if you do have one then by all means treat them like gold, and then they will treat your car the same way. I guess if service work is performed by the owner the real proof is in the driving and performance of the car. If it runs and drives well and has some miles since the work was done, it was probably done well. If the service was "just completed" by the owner....I'd be skeptical since there is no history to show the quality of the work. But if the service was just completed by a shop, I would have more confidence in it, but still it is untested. I documented everything I did to my car with pictures and notes, and am hoping this will be a "positive" and not a "negative" as far as value is concerned.
  3. TOM B

    TOM B Formula 3

    Jul 24, 2003
    Orange County, NY
    Full Name:
    Thomas Buckley
    I have no first hand experience with this as I still own my first Ferrari . I fear, however, that it may decrease the value. I'm keeping a diary of all work i've done and save the receipts for all parts purchased. I have had some work done by the dealer but ,predominantly, most work is done by me.

    This , combined with 75,000 in mileage point to my keeping my car for ever.

    It's really sad, however. Given the attention to detail an owner would typically give his own work and the high mileage, any potential buyer is in for a well sorted out car. But if it's someone in search of a garage queen, they are sure to be scared off. But I wouldn't hesitate to take it cross - country on a moment's notice.

  4. 308GTS

    308GTS Formula 3

    Dec 27, 2001
    IMHO I would pay more for the car. I have seen some dealer work and I was impressed from what I have seen thus far. It is great to be able to speak with an owner who can actually answer your ?'s about the car plus when a problem arises they usually get started on it right away vs. they have to wait a few weeks before they get enough money to get it fixed. To be honest I wouldn't pass up a car just because lack of records either but I do all my own work too. I like records for knowing the history not for the assumption it has records, it won't break down. Many people who only buy a car with all of the records can't work on it themselves and are scared that it might break down on them. It is a false sense of security but since they have limited knowledge of their car this is all they have. To be honest I have all of the books and records for my car but that certainly wasn't a driving force behind buying it. To me it shows history and they are fun to look at but for security purposes I could care less. The car could have just been serviced but a cam seal could leak, waterpump may leak. People IMHO put way to much emphasis on records. They pay a premium because they are scared of the service of the car. Just like the saying I wanted it done right so I went to the dealer. However that is another issue all in its own.
    I think that anyone who would pay less because an owner did their own work needs to see how some shops repair cars. I agree that an owner will pay much more attention to detail than an shop. Who knows your car better than YOU!!!! I would be more scared of the car that was tracked by an owner would couldn't drive correctly.
  5. pete04222

    pete04222 Formula Junior

    Nov 1, 2003
    Maine, USA
    Full Name:
    Peter Cyr
    Doing your own work should not decrease the value of your car as long as you document everything that you have done and keep all the receipts for the parts. A diary like Tom has is a great idea and a expnding file folder with the receipts organized would demonstrate to a potential buyer how thorough you are about maintaining your car.

    But generally, I think it is the car that speaks out for you. If I come to your house and I see a nice garage with a large quantity of well organized tools, a polished car with a clean engine bay and receipts for timing belts, a water pump, etc. Starts right up, runs and drives well, looks awesome, you tell me what you have done, what needs to be done, etc. That would mean more to me than a car at a dealer with a receipt from a mechanic for a 30,000 mile service.

    PS. - I bought my car from a dealer with a reciept from a mechanic for a 30,000 mile service. But I paid a heck of a lot less than what you'd be willing to sell me your car for. I am a DYI'er also and have put a lot of work into my car and I'm not willing to sell it for what I paid.
  6. MadMaxx

    MadMaxx Karting

    Nov 5, 2003
    You can tell when an owner who does his/her own service actually did the work. If you ask them about something specific, they'll usually rattle off the whole nine yards about what they did, and a funny story to go with it (I always do hehe). But, you may find some who will avoid details or just a generic "yeah, belts look good" response.

    I myself love to work on cars, and love even more to talk cars. I keep receipts and work logs of everything I do to my vehicles, usually accompanied by digital photos of the disassembly and reassembly (for my own benefit).

    So, if the person who has done all the work takes pride in their accomplishment and knows his/her stuff, then I think it's worth just as much (or more in my book) than a dealer serviced ride (depending on what was done of course).

    Just my .02

  7. superbimmer

    superbimmer Karting

    Jan 12, 2003
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Full Name:
    I can offer my first hand experience ... but every situation IS unique.

    I purchased a Ferrari where much work had been done by the owner. He owned 2 F-cars, and spoke with authority ... however, I didn't feel completely secure, until I had the car checked by "my" mechanic. That, in effect, is the key ... before buying would you rather have a skilled friend check your prespective purchase, OR a first rate pro?

    If you have ever hung-out with a really skilled professional, escpecially of the "old school" ... you would be extremely impressed with how much subtle intuition goes into making determinations about the mechanicals. I found it absolutely amazing to watch Jens Paulson work on my car. He relies so much on feel, sound, even smell ... he's been working on these cars for over 35 years!

    We're not talking Chevys or Fords ... these car can be SO EXPENSIVE to repair, that subtlety can't be over-looked.

    While I agree with some of the previous posts ... SOME commercial shops don't do the best work ... and SOME owners do great work ... I still feel that there is no comparison between an amateur mechanic, and a truely skilled pro.

    Keep in mind ... my observations are from the perspective of the older cars, where age (wear & tear) is a bigger factor.
  8. ronsupercar

    ronsupercar Formula 3

    May 2, 2002
    Orlando Fla.
    Full Name:
    I hope to do all the easy work on my own.. I plan to document and photograph everything I do.. Major work, I leave it to the professionals. This shold not hurt the value for resale.

    What hurts resale is the cars that for sale right before any major service is don't.... BEWARE!!
  9. TCM

    TCM Formula Junior

    Nov 10, 2003
    Tyngsborough, MA
    As long as you document everything you should be fine. Before the sale, you should have the potential buyer bring it to a "respected" shop to have it looked at while the both of you watch the mechanic go over it. That way there is no potential for the buyer to comeback later and argue with you about how somethign was wrong that you did not tell he or she about. We do this all the time for our customers and it seems to work out very well. Both buyer and seller are happy and the deal goes smoothly.
  10. Ken

    Ken F1 World Champ

    Oct 19, 2001
    Arlington Heights IL
    Full Name:
    DPO=Dreaded Previous Owner. Lots of DIYers tend to bodge (that's a technical term) things together that the new owner needs to redo. But then, lots of shops do crummy work too. My ex mechanic wasn't great on my Lotus and I had to have him or someone else redo a lot.

    I do all my own work now and have an eye to NOT become someone else's DPO. I would think if I ever sell my car, the car will speak for itself regardless of who has done the work. And yes, I keep all recipts for parts.
  11. PeterS

    PeterS Four Time F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 24, 2003
    Goodyear, AZ
    Full Name:
    Great replies here. What can also be an important factor in the resale is WHO did the work on your car. If I ever sell my 308, I will be proud to show my maintenance binder with receipts from my mechanic who was Porsche's 2000-2001-lead race mechanic (and an awesome Ferrari mechanic). I am sure that this will comand more value Vs showing proof of work at Joe Doke's garage, laundry and grill.
  12. superbimmer

    superbimmer Karting

    Jan 12, 2003
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Full Name:
    With little doubt ... an complete engine rebuild by a well-known and respected Ferrari mechanic IS worth money at re-sale time. Assuming what has happened to the car since, is documented and taken into consideration.
  13. parkerfe

    parkerfe F1 World Champ

    Sep 4, 2001
    Cumming, Georgia
    Full Name:
    Franklin E. Parker
    I turned down an otherwise good looking BB512i back when I was looking for mine because the owner had done his own 30k service. If the work is done wrong, you have no one to come back to. That's why I have all major work done by a dealer. The dealer gives you a one year warranty on their work and can afford to make it right if they make an error.
  14. Sean F.

    Sean F. F1 Rookie

    Feb 4, 2003
    Full Name:
    Sean F
    But would the dealer honor the warranty with a new owner?

    It really depends on the owner and what car looks like. Look at Terry Springers '77 308 GTB. He did the 30K service and a bunch of other stuff. It look fantastic and you can tell he took his time to do it right.

    Have it inspected and let the shop know the owner did the work. They'll tell you if it looks screwed up or not.

    I would not buy a car that the owner "just did the 30K" on, but if he has receipts from when he bought the parts (and his names on them), and it isn't due anytime soon, and he's driven it and it passes inspection, then don't worry too much. You can tell a lot by just asking some simple questions, and looking over the car yourself.
  15. carguy

    carguy F1 Rookie

    Oct 30, 2002
    Alabama (was Mich.)
    Full Name:
    Sean F. has got it right on the money!
  16. thecarreaper

    thecarreaper F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Sep 30, 2003
    i speak as someone in the market for a 308 and i would not hesitate to buy a car that was maintained by the owner. i would of course have a PPI done and would prefer both reciepts and photos. price is really the determining factor, i have looked at a few 308 s with minor damage as i have a 2 car garage and lots of time to do it right. some things may be best to have done by a dealer because of a warranty, but i have not ruled out any cars strictly because they were " owner maintained".

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