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What Does High Mileage on Your Car Mean?

on February 9, 2021
Car Gauge

What Does High Mileage on Your Car Mean?

on February 9, 2021

Whether you are shopping around for a used car or you have owned a vehicle for a long time and noticed that mileage meter ticking up pretty high.  Everyone is aware that high mileage vehicles mean that they have traveled quite a distance throughout their years in use.  Pre-owned vehicles typically have high mileage compared to a new car, but the takeaway is that used cars generally are much cheaper and cheaper to repair.  

Getting a used vehicle could be a great option, but at the same time, you never know what has occurred on that vehicle from a previous owner.  A great way to tell is by checking the mileage, but just because the mileage is high, doesn’t mean it’s an inoperable vehicle.  

What is considered high mileage?

In general, it is worth noting that the average car mileage per year will be roughly 12,000 miles.  If a driver is to use a vehicle for 10 years, and they are able to maintain 12,000 miles each year.  

The overall mileage of the vehicle would be 120,000 miles which would be considered low for a 10-year-old vehicle.  However, if the 10-year-old vehicle had 200,000 miles it would be considered a high distance.  

If you want to know what is good mileage for a used car, typically you want to follow this rule of thumb.  Find out the age of the vehicle, and find out the miles on the odometer.  Based on the mileage and year of the car, you can tell if it’s been overworked.  

If it’s a 5-year old vehicle and it has only 60,000 or fewer miles on it, it’s not a bad option, but if it has over 90,000 miles or more on that same vehicle.  It might not be the best choice.  

Mileage Rate and Car Parts

Believe it or not, gas mileage can heavily affect your vehicle’s car parts.  No matter if your vehicle mileage or high or low, certain car parts need to be replaced after a certain threshold of mileage is passed.  

A perfect example is your vehicle’s tires, which need to be replaced typically after every 20,000 miles.  This will need to be roughly replaced every year to two years based on how many miles you put on the vehicle.

Other examples of car parts that are affected by mileage are brake pads which need to be replaced around every 20,000 miles as well.  Timing belts need to be replaced around every 50,000 to 80,000 miles depending on the type of vehicle.  As well as clutches need to be replaced every 100,000 miles.  

If you are shopping around for high mileage cars or if your own vehicle has high miles.  Make sure you find out if these parts have been replaced or maintained.  If a vehicle has high mileage but has still been properly maintained then it might not be a bad purchase.  

High Mileage Oil

It is very hard to judge what is the best high mileage oil for your vehicle, but regardless, it’s a good idea!  If your vehicle has more than 75,000 miles, switching to high mile oil is ideal because they are formulated to prevent leaks, as well as cleaning out the engine.  

Higher mileage vehicles tend to have much larger sludge build-up inside of the engine.  Using high mileage oil on your vehicle will clean out most of that sludge while also keeping your vehicle running more efficiently.  These oils tend to be a bit more expensive but it is well worth the cost.  

There are many different types of oil so be sure to pick the best engine oil for your vehicle. High mileage engines and older engines tend to leak which is why these types of oils are equipped with seal conditioners that stop leaks from occurring.

The Calculators

There are two different types of calculators online that are free to use, which could help you in keeping a close eye on your vehicle’s miles.  The first one is a mileage calculator otherwise known as a mileage tracker.  This calculator will tell you the exact amount of miles it will take to travel from point A to Point B.  

An example would be traveling from New York to Las Vegas would take 2,522 miles.  This is a great tool to keep track of how many miles you are putting on your vehicle because this is also disregarding traffic conditions.  

There are plenty of mileage tracking apps that can also be useful. Having a mileage log on your phone or inside of your vehicle will help you pay attention to the amount of distance you are putting on your vehicle.

The next calculator that can be used is a gas mileage calculator.  This is an easy tool to figure out how much gas you are using per mile.  While this is not as important to maintaining mileage on your vehicle, it is useful to know how much money you are spending on gas, and how much gas you are using per mile.  Fuel efficiency is a big talk nowadays and using a calculator like this will help you track the miles you are using on your car.

High Mileage Shouldn’t Stop You

Although purchasing a used vehicle with high miles is typically not the best option.  If the vehicle was well maintained and had proper maintenance and repair.  It could still be worth it depending on the cost.  Proper vehicle care will extend the life of your car longer.    

Purchasing a pre-owned car can be very affordable and cheaper, but always make sure you conduct proper research on the vehicle you are purchasing prior to the purchase.  Having an extended auto warranty is a fantastic way to save money from any unexpected vehicle repair from a used car. 

Written By: Stephen Lubas

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