By ripped off and blown out - 08/06/2017 00:00
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If you have insurance, and they total it, you can be reimbursed for the parts for which you paid, if it was recently.
Which insurance company covers mechanical failure? If OP was in a collision, they might be reimbursed if they had the proper coverage. I have NEVER in my life seen a policy that covers any mechanical failure OR reimburses for repairs you've already had done prior to a collision.
Not to be rude op, but why didn't you just fly down and pay for a rental car? It would've been a lot cheaper. A bus or train could've worked if you're scared of flying and still would've been cheaper.
Maybe they were getting their car repaired so they can use it when they get home as well, as a more reliable mode of transportation (which it turned out not to be) I know in the city I live in city transit is incredibly unreliable. They may not have just been getting it done for the trip to their parents house is my point though. Otherwise I do agree with you that a bus train or plane ticket would have been way cheaper.
With $4000, you should have made a down payment on a low-mileage used car. Pouring that kind of money into a beater is insane.