I have two Pi’s running 24/7 since 2015, with same two 8 GB microSD cards.
Whenever I upgrade the distro or piaware version, I do NOT use command line. I write latest image to microSD card.
Both these 8 GB microSD cards are healthy & survived till today.
I have purchased these for Canadian $8 each (= US $5.50 each).
I am surprised why there is so much fuss to save a microSD card.
Simply save a backup copy on your Desktop/Laptop and that is all what is needed.