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  #1  
Old 12-31-2001, 10:14 PM
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What is the difference between repair and maintenance?

Someone once asked me how much I had spent so far on my '80 SD, in way of repairs. This got me thinking about what exactly would be called a "repair" versus maintenance. I see some people here post that they have spent X dollars on thier cars. Are they including brakes, which to me is maintenance. I think something that is replaced "routinely" would be maintenance and wouldn't include that in a "total amount spent" answer. Now for my SD I replaced the rear coil springs and all 4 shocks, would this be a "repair" or maintenance. I know this is sort of a gray area, but I got thinking about this again when I saw someone here recently spent "so far" $3,000 on thier car.
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  #2  
Old 12-31-2001, 10:18 PM
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I bet everyone has his or her own definition of repair and maintenance.

Here is how I look at it.

If the maintenance schedule calls for it, it is a maintenance. If it does not it is a repair. So I would look at springs and shocks as repairs.
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  #3  
Old 12-31-2001, 11:56 PM
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Maintenance is what you do to prevent something from having to be repaired.
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  #4  
Old 01-01-2002, 12:01 AM
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Items that are performed on a routine, oil, filters, tune ups, etc, are what I consider to be maintenance. Things that leak, break, wear out, disappear, etc, are what I consider to be reapirs.
HTH
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  #5  
Old 01-01-2002, 12:53 AM
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repair or maintenance

I think you're right. You're going to have as many different answers as replies.

My version of maintenance is routine type stuff like oil/filter changes, tires, brakes, etc. Some items depend on their age. Clutches, shocks, springs, tie rod ends would be repairs if done early in the cars life. Otherwise on a high mileage vehicle, they would be considered maintenance since these do have a finite life span that would not necessarily end the cars duty cycle. Anything that requires tearing down an engine or tranny would be repair regardless of age.
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  #6  
Old 01-01-2002, 01:07 AM
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Repair = Broken

Maintenance = Hoping it won't be broken
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  #7  
Old 01-01-2002, 08:24 AM
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Wink

It's really simple

Maintainence=Something that's necessary
Repair=Something that's necessary

There's no two ways about it
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  #8  
Old 01-01-2002, 11:10 PM
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It's the high mileage stuff that starts the grey area of this definition of repair. I replaced the rear springs on my '80 SD, but that was when the car was 21 years old. They didn't break, they just weren't holding up the backend like I am sure they did when new, they just wore out. I guess anything that breaks prematurely would be a repair, like motor mounts, radiators, etc. Fluids and filters are definetly maintenance items.
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  #9  
Old 01-02-2002, 10:36 AM
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tkamiya:

What makes you to replace the head gasket? At what mileage?
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  #10  
Old 01-02-2002, 11:58 AM
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On the definitions of repair versus maintenance:

Repair is pretty simple to define...replacing one or more broken components is definitive of a "repair".

Defining maintenance is hazy at best, but typically, maintenance involves "adjustment", not "replacement" of tangible components. What makes this definition hazy, is that you have to exclude "fluid" and WORN parts as "tangible" components.

If, during a typical maintenance routine, one discovers a "tangible" component that has failed or is at the point of failure, then the "maintenance" switches to a "repair".

What makes the definition hazy, is that there are different views of what "non-tangible" components constitute maintenance.

Most of us can determine this by looking at what manufacturers cover in a basic powertrain warranty. Although, MBs are pretty reliable beyond 100K, the powertrain list was probably developed early on looking at statistics of a typical ownership lifecycle, which ended at on or less than 100K. During that period, anything that was found to "wear out" before that period, was considered a "wear" item, and thus fell under the "maintenance" category.

If for example, piston rings would wear down every 20K miles or so (but of course, engines would have been engineered to make that repair as easy as changing oil), doing a ring job would be considered "maintenance".

That said, maintenance includes replacement of tangible parts that fall under the "wear" category.

To add to this confusion, if a part that falls under the "wear" category fails prematurely (or what the manufacturer considers premature), then it is a repair. Replacing worn tires is "maintenance"...replacing a prematurely worn or blown tire is a "repair".

Labor intensity is not a factor. Timing belts, while time consuming to replace, fall under the "wear" category under most powertrain warranties (thank God MB doesn't use them). Therefore, replacing a broken timing belt is a repair...replacing a WORN timing belt is considered "maintenance".
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  #11  
Old 01-02-2002, 08:34 PM
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Takimaya, actually it was your "3K" that prompted me to start this thread. It just got me thinking about how much I have spent on my '80 SD. From there I started looking at the records and thought "well that's not really a repair, that's maintenenace". I didn't realize how much of a bee's nest I stirred up with this. For my SD, I replaced the driver's side spring frame. To me that's a repair, whereas replacing glowplugs would be maintenance. Granted there is no interval for glowplugs, but I look at them like sparkplugs, they wear out and get replaced.
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  #12  
Old 01-02-2002, 10:11 PM
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maintence= be prepared to spend money

repair= I found out you have more money spend it on me



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  #13  
Old 01-02-2002, 10:46 PM
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Isn’t a new car, well anyway, “new” to its owner, a kind of maintenance? If so isn’t everything until the next “new” car one form or another of repair?

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  #14  
Old 01-03-2002, 11:11 AM
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I like the term "ownership expenses"...just ambiguous enough to work.

That way, you can even include fuel costs and wear and tear without being definitive!

Kind of levels the playing field when comparing different cars and the "cost of ownership"...
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  #15  
Old 01-03-2002, 11:14 AM
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Then you need to add insurance, licence plate, storage, and it gets expensive.
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