Buying a Used Car: What Mileage Is too High? From a financial standpoint, buying a used car is usually a very good idea. It’s the flip side of the old adage that once you drive a new car off the lot, the value plummets. As a used car buyer, you benefit from that steep drop in price. However, when buying a used car, mileage is a big concern. You need to find the right balance between age and price. Of course, you’ll pay less for an older car, but with that comes more mileage and likely less remaining life for the car. So, what is considered high mileage for a used car? Knowing some basic rules for buying a used car will help you find a good target range so you can get the best value that you can.
What Is Considered High Mileage for a Used Car? When determining how much is too much when buying a used car with high mileage, you have to think about how long the car is likely to last, how long you would like to drive the car, and then take the car’s current mileage into that equation. In terms of too many miles, over 100,000 to 125,000 should probably be your ceiling. Here’s why. Today’s cars tend to last at least eight years or 150,000 miles. Many can last longer. That gives you a good starting point. People tend to drive around 15,000 miles per year. If you would like to drive your next used car for five years, for example, you’ll want to find a car that has at least another 75,000 miles of expected life ahead of it. With that in mind, a good mileage range for a used car would be between 75,000 and 100,000 miles, since many cars last beyond the 150,000-mile point.
Other Rules for Buying a Used Car Of course, predicting how long a car will last is tricky. In addition to miles, you should look at the type of car, since some models last much longer than others. You should also get an idea of the car’s history. If it was driven in a harsh climate, was a rental car, or has an accident history, you should reduce your mileage expectations.
Remember to Take Care of Your High Mileage Used Car You’re not entirely at the mercy of a used car’s previous owners. You can get more out of your high mileage car by taking good care of it. This includes:
Finding the right used car within your mileage limits can be a great value, especially if you take good care of it. Getting the most out of your vehicle will save you a lot of money over time. If your used car gets damaged, hope is not lost. Get collision and auto body repair at Cascade Collision, and we’ll fix it up in no time!
- Changing the oil and other fluids regularly
- Having the tires rotated and replaced when needed
- Getting your brakes checked
- Following the manufacturer’s service recommendations
- Driving carefully