Protect Your Car With This High Mileage Vehicle Maintenance Checklist

A car is an asset that will depreciate by 10% to 20% within the first year after leaving the showroom. It will continue to depreciate yearly due to wear and tear. A car isn’t an asset you can change soon because you need to plan your finances. However, you can keep it in good running condition to cover extra hundreds or thousands of miles before purchasing a new one. Here is a high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist you need to master.

Body Restoration

According to Eli Shamam, an auto body expert, car paint can last for 10 to 15 years if well-maintained. However, environmental factors can cause fading within 2 years after purchase. In areas that experience severe winter with road grime and salt, the vehicle body can take a beating very fast. That said, body restoration tops the high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist.

Experts advise regularly detailing, waxing, and buffing the vehicle, especially before and after winter. But everything has its duration to shine. Once your car has seen its better days, you’ll notice with the body because of severe damage to the overcoat. Paying for the auto body service will help restore the aesthetics to help push the extra mile.

The vehicle body paint fades due to exposure to moisture and sun. The bird poop and other acidic substances also get into the undercoat, which causes the body to rust. The repair shop professionals first identify the dents and try to fine-tune them. Afterward, they will sand the area and apply high-quality body filler.

The body filler is then smoothed with fine-grit sandpaper and primed. After applying prime, the car is ready for repainting. Experts repaint the car to give it a beautiful shining look. As a car owner, you must regularly detail and wax your car to retain the sparkling paint job.

Regularly Check the Transmission

Every car owner speaks about taking care of the engine. But the transmission system is one of the key components that need attention in a high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist. According to transmission repair experts, a transmission system can last 15000 to 2000 miles if well maintained. However, some transmission systems in classy cars like BMW can last up to 300000 miles.

The car transmission system’s life will depend on how you use the car. For instance, you may use your car for long-distance travel, leading to fast wear. On the other hand, people have opted to use their cars to make extra cash by offering delivery services. People seek truck delivery service when transporting bulky items, but a car can deliver lighter goods.

That aside, the transmission system is a vital component that helps transfer power from the engine to the wheels. Once you learn your transmission system has seen its better days, hire a professional to examine it and advise you accordingly. If some parts can be replaced, you’ll be lucky to enjoy some extra miles before planning financially for the new vehicle. Transmission experts say you can spend around $1800 to $3400 to repair a transmission system.

Alternatively, you can swap your damaged transmission system with a used one, which costs $800 to $1500. Usually, these systems come from cars written off by the insurance after an accident. Other components, like the engine, may have been wholly damaged, but the transmission system remains intact. Also, you can purchase a rebuilt transmission system for $1100 to $2800 or a refurbished one for $1300 to $3400.

Clean the Lights

The car lights are beneficial for your safety but are some of the first components that take a beating as the car ages. Headlights and taillights start to crack due to exposure to elements like the sun’s heat. Additionally, cold causes the headlight material to become brutal and crack. As such, the lights top the high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist.

The car headlights help with better visibility during the night. This will help reduce the number of collisions and suspension damage if you drive on a bad road. The taillight involves the indicators and the brake lights, which alert the drivers at the back to avoid collisions. Suppose the lights are cracked, or the glass has a layer of oxidation; it will be difficult for the drivers at the back to see you.

Car lights also save you from trouble because as the car ages, the insurance premiums go down because of value degradation. So, you may face compensation challenges if your car is involved in an accident. But apart from safety, you’ll have enhanced style for your car with the new lights and energy efficiency because modern car lighting uses LED technology.

Upgrading your old car lights doesn’t mean setting a higher budget. In fact, you can visit some yards that stock junk cars and purchase second-hand spares at a lower cost. Most cars are a write-off due to accidents, while others have severe wear that can cost more than half the purchase price. As such, the owners decide to sell the spares at a lower cost.

Engine Treatment

In the automotive world, the engine is like a beating heart; it gives life and power to the car. The engine should be the first consideration when planning the high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist. You will often notice slow acceleration and some knocking noise when the engine has reached its end of life. But some issues do not mean the engine cannot serve a little longer.

If you plan to squeeze more mileage and years of your car, check the lubrication system. The engine accumulates sludge which hinders ample lubrication of essential components. As a result, the components overheat, and the engine underperforms. For instance, if you are a mover, your car will travel on dusty roads, and the dust will get into the engine.

Heat in the combustion chambers causes the sludge to stick in some parts and fail to loosen when doing oil changes. As that’s the case, you’d want to examine the engine before concluding it’s completely worn out. The best way to remove the sludge is to add engine treatment.

The engine treatment is a unique formulation you can add to the fuel to clean the fuel system. It enhances complete combustion. On the other hand, you add it to the oil to help loosen the sludge and lubricate the essential components. It extends the oil life and improves its flow during cold weather.

In addition to engine treatment, you may need to change a few components, like the timing belt, the pulleys, the coolant pump, and the oil pump. Usually, when the engine has accumulated sludge, the pump may get clogged and damaged. Adding a new oil pump can help you cover several miles with your car before purchasing a new one.

Aesthetic Car Decal

Taking care of the exterior is the major activity in the high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist. After doing the paint job, an older car model may not give the best aesthetic appeal you need. Fortunately, you can add some aesthetic decals to make it get the attention of everyone on the road. Thanks to technology, especially in the printing industry.

A custom sticker on the rear windshield or around the windows can change the overall look of your old car. For example, you can add photos of your favorite celebrity or information to educate the public. You can also deal with an advertising company to add stickers to your car and earn some money.

However, the best approach is to have customized stickers on different parts of the car. Normally, car owners add stickers to the faded parts or areas that fail to give the vibe even after the paint job. But indeed, a sticker will prevent your car from weather and add aesthetic appeal. The major benefit of the sticker is that you can replace it every time it’s worn out.

Clean the AC

One of the signs that your car has seen its better days is failing AC. The AC is an essential part of the car because it improves the air quality and makes the cabin comfortable when driving. AC also saves you from respiratory health conditions because it helps discourage the growth of mold and mildew in the cabin.

According to automotive experts, you should clean or flush your old car AC at least once a year. This will help save fuel because an inefficient AC system forces the engine to overwork when cooling the cabin. Cleaning the AC system is a complex task that will require a professional. But if you know the system, you can clean it.

Usually, the AC system is located under the hood. The compressor is attached to the drive belt, and the pipes connect to the cabin to supply air. After accessing under the hood components, get into the cabin and remove the detachable parts using a screwdriver. Clean the area using a soft brush.

Apply the AC evaporator cleaner and change the cabin filter to ensure the cabin is supplied with clean air. Dry the areas before attaching all parts and test your AC system. If the AC system is worn out, you will purchase a new system and hire an AC service provider to install it in your old car.

Regular Full Car Detailing

Although you can do your best in the car body as part of your high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist, the interior also needs some special love. Schedule full detailing at least twice yearly to ensure the salt and grime don’t damage the exterior. On the other hand, detailing will help- maintain the interior, like the leather or fabric seats. Detailing will also solve some mold and bad smell from the boot that the AC cannot solve.

Detailing in some shops may include waxing the body, a form of sealcoatings to prevent weather elements from damaging your final coating. When performing the exercise, focus on the underbody because grime builds up in the area fast. Unfortunately, the underbody is normally overlooked by many car owners, and the exhaust pipe is a component that suffers from rust.

Replace the Glass

Include your car glass into your high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist. The car glass protects you from the weather and also enhances visibility. Once the car has covered several miles, you will notice a compromised view when driving. Additionally, they develop white patches on the edges, and some pieces on the edges break.

Replace or tint the older glasses with a commercial glass tint for safety. The tint helps keep the shattered pieces together after an accident, reducing injuries. According to the Jaber legal firm, broken glasses cause several types of injuries which can affect someone’s future. For instance, glass causes eye injuries by penetrating the cornea, lens, or retina, which results in vision loss or blindness.

Check and Fix the Doors

Door handles and power window buttons are prone to damage as the car ages. You’d want to hire a professional to inspect the door condition and fix wiring issues to extend their lifespan. Thieves can sometimes access your car interior easily if the locks are damaged.

On the other hand, power windows are essential to include in the high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist. When driving, you regularly roll up or down the windows to get fresh air when the AC is off. Unfortunately, you can suffer if they fail to roll up when it’s raining. According to Jerry Insurance, fixing car doors switches can cost around $200 to $300.

Apply Sound Deadener

Noise reduction should be your concern when the car ages because door hinges start to detach, and the panel gaps widen. Most of the noise in the car comes from the engine and the wheels as they get into contact with the road. Sound deadening the car will help you stay comfortable as you enjoy the music inside the car.

Sound-deadening material should be applied on the roof, the floor, door panels, and the hood. This will also save you from regular AC repair because it will save the system from overworking. Additionally, your car music sound will not be heard from outside. This saves you from the law because noise pollution can cost you.

Once your car has developed aging signs, refer to this high mileage vehicle maintenance checklist to squeeze more mileage. Experts say an engine can go for up to 1,000,0000 miles if well maintained. Ideally, choose high-quality engine oil, brake fluids, coolant, and fuel. However, your car may wear fast due to weather and road conditions.

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