Good Mileage on a Used Car

Everyone looks at mileage when shopping for used cars. The odometer may even be the first thing to catch your eye when you step inside. What exactly constitutes as good mileage on a used car and is mileage really that important to the dependability of a pre-owned vehicle?

Check out Val-U-Line®'s guide below to find out.

A rule of thumb to follow is that people drive an average of about 12,000 miles a year. Therefore, 120,000 miles would be a good mileage for a used car that's about 10 years old.

What Is Good Mileage for a Used Car?

Good Mileage on Used Car<

Mileage will vary between vehicles, but a decent rule of thumb to follow is that people drive an average of about 12,000 miles a year. Therefore, 120,000 miles would be a good mileage for a used car that's about 10 years old.

Determining good mileage for a used car will require a bit of math. Seeing as the average driver covers about 12,000 miles a year, you'll want to see the following:

  • About 60,000 miles on a 5-year-old car
  • About 84,000 miles on a 7-year-old car
  • About 108,000 miles on a 9-year-old car

Of course, some cars will have less or more miles on the odometer. While choosing a pre-owned vehicle with good mileage can often mean a more dependable performance, no set number of miles can determine how long a used car is supposed to last. In fact, some cars with higher mileage can last longer than those with less based on how they were driven and how well they were taken care of.

Is Mileage Important When Buying a Used Car?

Mileage is important when buying a used car, but it should not be your deciding factor. No matter how many miles a vehicle has, the best way to make sure you drive home in a reliable car is to choose one that's been properly taken care of by the previous owners.

To see if the used car you've had your eye on has had all the professional care it needs, you'll want to check the vehicle history report. This report gives you detailed information on the following:

  • Service and maintenance records
  • Reported accidents
  • Number of previous owners
  • Title history

If the report states that the used car you want has had all recommended maintenance and repairs at the appropriate times, then it'll be more likely to last longer-regardless of its mileage-than a vehicle that didn't get the routine services it needed.

Is It Wise to Buy a Car With a High Mileage?

These days, vehicles are built to last, and it renders the old practice of steering clear of high-mileage used cars obsolete. The average car in the U.S. is about 11 to 12 years old, which means most will have 132,000 miles to 144,000 miles on the odometer. Proper maintenance and care could help them hit 200,000 miles or even more.

Buying a high-mileage used car that's in great shape is an awesome investment. They come with several benefits that could include:

  • Lower initial cost
  • Little depreciation
  • Good resale value

In some cases, it's more important to look at the number of previous owners an older vehicle has had, not the mileage. If a vehicle has only had one or two owners and it has well over 100,000 miles, chances are they took good care of it to reach that milestone. If there has been three, four, or more owners, it's more likely that at least one of them neglected the scheduled maintenance.

Should You Buy a Car With More Than 100,000 Miles?

If you're looking at a used car with over 100,000 miles on the odometer, there's a good chance it's over 10 years old-or soon will be. There's a big difference, however, between a "young" 10-year-old car and an old 10-year-old car. What does that mean?

In order for a vehicle to hit 100,000 miles, it's likely that the previous owner had to get a lot of components replaced. That's a good thing for you. At or around 100,000 miles, most vehicles will need new:

  • Accessory drive belts
  • Timing belt
  • Water pump
  • PCV valve
  • Gaskets

If the vehicle you're considering has had these parts replaced, consider it a young 10-year-old car. You'll most likely be able to cover another 100,000 miles before even thinking about replacing those parts again.

Is Mileage or Year More Important?

Good Mileage on a Used Car

Good mileage for a used car can tell you a lot about that vehicle, but so can the years it has been on the road. So, which is more important: mileage or year?

The truth is, both can be equally important when choosing the right car. Low mileage on a newer pre-owned vehicle can provide years of dependable performance, but that's not always the standard. In addition to checking its service history, drivers should also consider how the vehicle was used.

No matter how old or how many miles are on the odometer, how a used car was operated in the past can affect its reliability. For example, if the vehicle you're considering has fewer miles but is older, then it was probably used for quick commutes in stop-and-go traffic. Typically, these cars have more wear and tear under the hood and may experience more performance issues.

On the other hand, a newer used car with more miles can mean it was used more for highway driving. A vehicle with more highway miles tends to have less damage in some of its performance parts because cruising down the freeway takes less of a toll on parts. Therefore, these vehicles may provide a longer-lasting performance.

Find a Great Used Car with Great Mileage Today!

While drivers should consider mileage when shopping for a used car, it shouldn't be the deciding factor. Understanding the type of miles on the odometer and how it was taken care of can help you find the reliable pre-owned car you need.

For more information about used car mileage or if you're ready to get behind the wheel of a dependable pre-owned vehicle, contact the team at Val-U-Line®!