Smokers could lose thousands of pounds off the value of the cost of their car when going to sell it if they regularly smoke inside their vehicle. Smoking could not only be damaging your health long term, but it could also be negatively affecting the value of your car, claim experts. The dangers of smoking and secondhand smoke are widely publicised and also the cost of such a habit is also commonly known. However, something motorists may not know is who smoking regularly in your car could damage the overall value.
Data specialists HPI has said that smokers could slash thousands off the value of their vehicle as a result of smoking in it.
If you’re a smoker, the first thing a dealer will do is knock back the price of your part exchange,” says Fernando Garcia, consumer director at HPI.
“That’s because a car for part-ex has to be made fit for resale – a process which is considerably more difficult and expensive when a smoker previously drove that car.”
The two main issues are physical damage to the interior and smell – something many smokers either don’t notice or think is solved by using an air freshener.
“Even if there is no obvious damage, the smell of smoke is a major problem for motor dealers,” says Fernando Garcia.
“Smoke becomes ingrained in the fabric of the car and climate control, requiring a professional valet and a special ‘bomb’ to clean the air conditioning.
“It can cost anything up to £150 and is still no guarantee that the vehicle will smell sufficiently fresh.
“In severe cases, the internal fabric and head cloth may have to be stripped out too – a process which can cost hundreds of pounds.”
Any repair costs, markers, stains and cigarette burns to the dashboard and upholstery could quickly see a heavy smoker could easily lose up to £2000 at trade-in.
“Some dealers tell us they won’t even buy vehicles from smokers, because of the time and expense of getting the car properly clean and free of lingering smells,” adds Fernando Garcia.
“Everyone knows that smoking is bad for our health, but few people realise that it can also have a surprisingly nasty impact on the value of your car.”