Caring for Your High Mileage Vehicle

Mind Engined Sports Car

According to reports, the median age of cars on the road is over 9 years old; of these, 2/3 have over 75,000 miles on them. In recent years, those numbers have continued to rise.

What does this mean? Many people are keeping their vehicles longer than they used to. This is due in part to the economy, but it’s also because modern cars and trucks are built to be more durable and reliable. This means having a high-mileage vehicle isn’t as expensive or worrisome as it used to be.

Which Service Interval Does My High Mileage Vehicle Need?

It’s common for drivers with over 100,000 miles on their vehicles to ask which service intervals they should follow. To answer that, let’s take a look at the special needs of an older vehicle.

Even if the vehicle has been well-maintained, time and mileage will still take a toll. The engine and transmission will have more sludge, and there will be more dirt and contaminants in the fuel tank. The fuel, steering, and brake systems will have gum and varnish buildup. There will be corrosion and deposits in the cooling system, and the seals and gaskets will have started to dry out.

All of these factors, along with normal wear and tear, mean that the engine may not be as strong as when it was new, which means it has to work harder. So, we need to compensate. Have you ever noticed the high-mileage formulations for oil changes and transmission services? These contain special additives that help to condition the seals and gaskets, preventing leaks. They’re also formulated with more detergents to help clean out sludge and other deposits. Even though they cost a little more, they’re completely worth it.

How does this translate to service intervals? In general, if a service was recommended every 15,000 miles when the car was new, you should continue to get the service done every 15,000 miles. Talk with your service advisor about the condition of your engine and see if they think the service intervals for oil changes or other types of maintenance should be adjusted.

Following the recommended intervals is more important in a higher mileage vehicle than a newer vehicle. Since sludge, deposits, and other types of debris can build up more quickly in an older vehicle, skipping maintenance can lead to problems faster than what you’d see with a newer one.

Keeping Your High Mileage Vehicle on the Road

If you have a high-mileage car, truck, or SUV, ask your service advisor to give your vehicle an assessment. If you haven’t performed a fuel system cleaning, replaced the power steering or brake fluid, or had a differential or transmission service, it may be time. With the right maintenance, you can enjoy your high mileage vehicle for many more miles!

Schedule an appointment for your high mileage vehicle at EuroCar Service. Our ASE-certified technicians specialize in all European makes, including Audi, BMW, Land Rover, Mini Cooper, Smart Car, Mercedes, Saab, Jaguar, Volkswagen, Volvo, and Fiat. We understand the special needs of older vehicles and know how to keep them safe and reliable on the road. Give us a call at 206-527-8828 or request an appointment online.