Next time you are driving, take a look at the vehicles around you. The average age of vehicles on the road today is 11.9 years old. That would be model year 2008. Would you have guessed that? It is predicted that this number will only rise.

Average age of vehicles is increasing

The pandemic and a number of other factors have pushed the average age of vehicles up. New vehicle prices are increasing, and older vehicles can last longer with top quality auto maintenance. Most car parts are made to last unless you ignore them. With a little TLC, your vehicle can go the distance.  

How to make your vehicle last longer

We’ve put together a list of suggested maintenance, so you know how to best maintain an older vehicle and make it last even longer.

No accidents!

Your first priority is to maintain things that could cause you to lose control of your vehicle.

  • Check the brakes often – don’t wait until they are grinding. Make sure there is no leaking brake fluid … that is a sign for a maintenance visit to your mechanic.
  • Practice regular tire maintenance. Check tire pressure periodically – the correct pressure is listed on the inside of the driver’s door.  Rotate and balance the tires for longer life.  
  • Can you see? It is inexpensive and easy to replace windshield wiper blades and headlights.  Make sure obscured vision is not the reason for an accident!

Don’t be stranded!

Your second priority is to maintain things that could leave you stranded.

  • Check battery life.  Clean any corrosion on battery terminals and inspect the cables and their connections. 
  • Timing belts should be changed every 60,000 miles. Some engines suffer serious damage when the timing belt breaks, while others just leave you stranded.
  • Keep your car cool. You can check the antifreeze level on most cars, but you can’t tell anything else about the fluid. It is a good idea to drain and flush the fluid as advised by your owner’s manual.

Routine maintenance

Your third priority is to keep your car running smoothly. Follow your owner’s manual for a good maintenance schedule that is specific to your vehicle.

  • Most cars use synthetic oil that needs to be replaced every 5,000-10,000 miles.
  • New filters (oil, air, and fuel filters) can dramatically impact the performance of your vehicle.
  • Have all fluids, hoses and belts checked at each oil change.  

If your check engine light comes on, our auto repair experts can scan it and receive a code that will indicate what the problem is. 

Remember, maintenance is designed to help prevent major breakdowns or repairs. As the average age of vehicles on the road goes up, maintenance becomes more important. It is worth the investment to adhere to a maintenance schedule to ensure your safety while on the road. Our experts are here to help! Contact one of our NARPRO approved shops today to help you get started!