how important are miles when car shoppping

Posted by: ram_man

how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 07:40 PM

I have found a few nice cars some are one owners but have between 170-185,000 would the miles scare you? How important are miles.
Posted by: The Critic

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 07:41 PM

185k?

I would not even consider a car with over 75k miles, myself.

150k is usually when most cars are towards the end of their life.
Posted by: mclasser

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 07:49 PM

Second to price, miles are the most important.

By 185K miles, you're looking at major steering/suspension work. Anything rubber like seals and gaskets are also done by then.
Posted by: itguy08

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 07:51 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
185k?

I would not even consider a car with over 75k miles, myself.

150k is usually when most cars are towards the end of their life.


This. Design life for pretty much all manufacturers is 150k. Yes there are those that can go 2-300k but those are the exception rather than the norm.
Posted by: dishdude

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 07:56 PM

Originally Posted By: itguy08
Originally Posted By: The Critic
185k?

I would not even consider a car with over 75k miles, myself.

150k is usually when most cars are towards the end of their life.


This. Design life for pretty much all manufacturers is 150k. Yes there are those that can go 2-300k but those are the exception rather than the norm.


2-300k on a vehicle means it was very well maintained and gently driven. People do a lot in 185k to destroy a vehicle.
Posted by: redhat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 07:57 PM

Miles don't scare me. If I bought a car that wasn't blatantly abused for a reasonable price, I'd have no problem going through the whole thing.
Posted by: DirtyMoe21

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:14 PM

What kinds of cars?
Posted by: ram_man

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:19 PM

Originally Posted By: DirtyMoe21
What kinds of cars?


camrys and accords mostly
Im looking to spend 5000
Posted by: eljefino

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:20 PM

I don't mind miles if they make sense to the rest of the purported story of how the car was used.

Conversely, I'd worry greatly about a 7 year old Prius with 35k miles. Who'd go for MPG then not use it?

If you have EZ Pass toll transponders I always like to see the velcro on the windscreen. Implies turnpike usage.

Also like seeing four name brand matching tires, but that's just gold on my price range.
Posted by: gregk24

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:21 PM

High mileage is not the end all, take it on a long test drive and have a knowledgeable shop check it all out. Many vehicles now a days are capable of high mileage without lots of headache.
Posted by: ram_man

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:21 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
185k?

I would not even consider a car with over 75k miles, myself.

150k is usually when most cars are towards the end of their life.


ive seen engines torn apart where engine still looked like new inside at 150-200,000
of course thats just the engine. But 150,000 is close to the end of life?
Posted by: redhat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:26 PM

I don't think 150k is near the end of life. I think if you're looking for a Camry or Accord with that mileage you can expect a lot of life from their drive trains.
Posted by: The Critic

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:29 PM

Originally Posted By: redhat
I don't think 150k is near the end of life. I think if you're looking for a Camry or Accord with that mileage you can expect a lot of life from their drive trains.


Based on what? These are fairly "cheap" cars that were not overbuilt. Even if a vehicle is well-maintained, it does wear out eventually. 150k is nearing that point.
Posted by: typ901

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:31 PM

Maintenance history is what I look for. Miles sure, but condition of the vehicle is my first priority.
Posted by: redhat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:34 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
Originally Posted By: redhat
I don't think 150k is near the end of life. I think if you're looking for a Camry or Accord with that mileage you can expect a lot of life from their drive trains.


Based on what? These are fairly "cheap" cars that were not overbuilt. Even if a vehicle is well-maintained, it does wear out eventually. 150k is nearing that point.


I don't know. Maybe because there have been many upon many of these "cheap" cars that have proven track records of lasting for many upon many miles.

Just because it doesn't cost as much as a BMW doesn't mean it can't keep on ticking. Also, I like how you put emphasis on the word cheap. Are you implying that since they don't cost $40k+ that they aren't built well?
Posted by: Panzerman

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:36 PM

I think the year has more to do with the condition of seals and other parts. If it has a lot of miles and they were put on quick, I wouldn't mind it. I bought a 07 with 165,000 miles. Everything is still like new. I have 02 with 125,000 and it seems like stuff is going constantly.
Posted by: rjundi

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 08:46 PM

Originally Posted By: ram_man
Originally Posted By: DirtyMoe21
What kinds of cars?


camrys and accords mostly
Im looking to spend 5000


These cars are best left to those who can afford to fix themselves and have backup transport or can afford to pay to fix them with a quality/trusty independent.

Wife owns a 2005 Legacy turbo wagon with 164,000 miles worth around $5000. We don't think twice on repairing or costs as my wife likes it and repairs although averaging about $200/month the last year. While not pleasant it does not make us worry.

Posted by: MuzzleFlash40

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:00 PM

It really depends on the car. Our 04 has 121k on it and still uses less than 1/4 of a quart in a 6k oil change. Same as it did when we got it with 66k almost 2 years ago. Can you say the same with another model car? I don't know. But I wouldn't think twice about doing it again in a few years when this one hits about 250k.
Posted by: simple_gifts

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:10 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
Originally Posted By: redhat
I don't think 150k is near the end of life. I think if you're looking for a Camry or Accord with that mileage you can expect a lot of life from their drive trains.


Based on what? These are fairly "cheap" cars that were not overbuilt. Even if a vehicle is well-maintained, it does wear out eventually. 150k is nearing that point.


Now I heard it all....

Camry and Accord don't have to be overbuilt, they are well designed for long life; Many people don't have the option of buying a low mileage car and wouldn't hesitate at buying a well maintained 150K Camry or Accord or Civic.
Posted by: SLCraig

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:16 PM

Mileage does not worry me at all. Just have to look the thing over and go for a drive.

Most cars can go that far with ease as long as they have been somewhat taken care of.

That is where you come in. It should be obvious within the first 60 seconds if the car is in good shape or not.
Posted by: DirtyMoe21

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:18 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
Originally Posted By: redhat
I don't think 150k is near the end of life. I think if you're looking for a Camry or Accord with that mileage you can expect a lot of life from their drive trains.


Based on what? These are fairly "cheap" cars that were not overbuilt. Even if a vehicle is well-maintained, it does wear out eventually. 150k is nearing that point.


Based on thousands of them on the roads today, 150k isn't squat on a Camry or Accord that has been well maintained. I have personally seen several of these "well" built cars go over 150k and beyond with normal maintenance.
Posted by: ls1mike

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:29 PM

Depends on the history and what you are willing to do.
Not just Hondas and Toyotas last that long. I have had 3 3800s that went well into the 250,000s and a 4.3 and 5.7 that did the same. My old 454 is well over 250,000 now. When I got rid of it, it had 190,000, 85 percent of it towing, and it ran like a champ.
Posted by: redhat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:51 PM

Originally Posted By: ls1mike
Depends on the history and what you are willing to do.
Not just Hondas and Toyotas last that long. I have had 3 3800s that went well into the 250,000s and a 4.3 and 5.7 that did the same. My old 454 is well over 250,000 now. When I got rid of it, it had 190,000, 85 percent of it towing, and it ran like a champ.


Thank you for mentioning the good old 3.8. I personally had a Series 1 take me to 231k and a friends dad took a Series 1 with an aluminum intake to 375k.
Posted by: Doog

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:53 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic

150k is usually when most cars are towards the end of their life.


Not of they are maintained according to the manufacturers recommendation. 150k is 50-70% used up depending on the vehicle make. I used to think that way until I ran a few to 170 then 190 and now I have one with 192k and plan to run it at least another 30-40k. Just depends on the car. But I learned one thing: If I have a car with 150k on it and it doesn't leak or consume oil. It will probably go 250k or more.

I dod meet a guy with a Lexus LS400 that had 800k on it. Original engine and 3rd transmission.
Posted by: TFB1

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 09:59 PM

For my "good" vehicles I've never bought one with much over 100K mi(112 to be exact)... For around town beater I only look at condition as I'll probably sell it in two or three years, usually for more than I paid...

Now days I go for the low mileage one owners that have been garaged... Have a '98 Grand Marquis that just turned 61K mi(bought in '10 with 33K mi), looks better than my '07 with same mileage...
Posted by: The Critic

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:04 PM

I think a lot of you are solely focusing on the engine/transmission. Sure, under light-duty service, many cars will easily go 150k if they are maintained a bit better than minimum.

However, the suspension, interior and electronic modules may not have the same lifespan. At 150k, it is quite likely that the vehicle will need some suspension work and other electronic items (I.e. alternator and starter) will not be far behind.

The hassle factor is an important consideration. A payment on a newer economy car is under $500/mo, and the predictability and reliability is well worth it if you have a busy schedule. Not everyone's lifestyle is a good fit for a car that needs extra attention.
Posted by: hattaresguy

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:18 PM

I wouldn't buy a vehicle with spaceship mileage unless it was very cheap. For $5k your one transmission and a set of struts away from an $8k vehicle.

Considering said vehicle can be purchased for just over $20k new your paying a large premium for the most maintenance intensive period of the cars life.

The last 170k mile car I bought was in HS and I paid $300 for it. If something broke I junked it.
Posted by: Ben Boyle

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:21 PM

Mileage is relative, age is relative. It's all in how badly you want it. I have a Citroen 2CV I drive whenever there is no snow or salt. I have replaced the frame, the engine, and many other parts along the way. However, I have driven the car on multiple 12 hour plus trips each way with excellent reliability. I drive a 3.8 powered Grand Prix in the winter with almost 240,000 miles and the car does need the occasional repair but the car has proven to be very easy to repair and the parts are very inexpensive and available compared to a Toyota or a Honda in my Michigan locale and I just keep on going. I also have a Lada Niva for the really bad days, but I have to think the inability to get parts quickly so I limit what I do with it.

I think the '02 Grand Prix, mile for mile, is the cheapest car I've ever owned. My family bought it new and I've driven it now that it's been relegated to beater status but that car has virtually all original parts and I don't believe that the typical same year Camry or Accord could have done it any better.
Posted by: Doog

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:22 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic

The hassle factor is an important consideration. A payment on a newer economy car is under $500/mo, and the predictability and reliability is well worth it if you have a busy schedule. Not everyone's lifestyle is a good fit for a car that needs extra attention.


So you are advocating to pay up to $6000 annually plus higher insurance? Not a very good recommendation. If you put $2-3000 in annual maintenance in a 150k car it will most likely go another 150k and you don't suffer the additional cost of the depreciation. My best bet is a Certified Used car with 30-40k on it and a 100k warranty. Then drive it to 200k and sell it. If you do the math on that combo you will see it is the best of both worlds.
Posted by: Doog

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:29 PM

Originally Posted By: Ben Boyle

I think the '02 Grand Prix, mile for mile, is the cheapest car I've ever owned. My family bought it new and I've driven it now that it's been relegated to beater status but that car has virtually all original parts and I don't believe that the typical same year Camry or Accord could have done it any better.


+1 Your GP was a good one. Now imagine is you had dumped it at 150k.
Posted by: redhat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:37 PM

Sure starters and alternators will take a hike eventually. So will suspension components for that matter too. But by no means does that mean the car goes to the scrapyard. I see all of those items as repairs/maintenance that will just need to be done at some point.

We have owned many Hondas and GMs that had their original starters and alternators well into their 200k lives.

I don't know... Maybe some of us like turning our wrenches and have pride in keeping an older vehicle on the road. Some of us need new and low mileage.

All of our old high mileage vehicles have had very healthy electronics, and the leather is still very nice on the 185k '99 Grand Prix.
Posted by: renegade_987

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 10:56 PM

It really depends on what I want it for. If I just need a beater for winter or driving to work, and it can be had cheap, I'll go 200K + all day long as long as everything checks out. If its a daily driver, however, and I'm looking for something nice, I like to keep it a 50K or below.
Posted by: johnachak

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 11:38 PM

[/quote]

So you are advocating to pay up to $6000 annually plus higher insurance? Not a very good recommendation. If you put $2-3000 in annual maintenance in a 150k car it will most likely go another 150k and you don't suffer the additional cost of the depreciation. My best bet is a Certified Used car with 30-40k on it and a 100k warranty. Then drive it to 200k and sell it. If you do the math on that combo you will see it is the best of both worlds. [/quote]

Nowadays a car with 30-40k will sell for almost as much as a new one. Discounts and 0% financing can be had for new vehicles. Not for late model used ones. By the time you pay the extra interest the final price would almost be the same.as long as you have a car loan, you will need that higher priced (full coverage) insurance.
Posted by: bama7x57

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/19/14 11:45 PM

My last 4 vehicle purchases had 126K, 141K, 155K and 138K miles on them when I purchased them. I've had great service out of my GMs.
I would even consider buying one with 300K if it looked good and was priced accordingly.
I do my own maintenance and repairs.
Posted by: daves87rs

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 12:14 AM

Depends on car, shape at that mileage.

Different things for different folks....
Posted by: zerosoma

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 12:50 AM

I would buy a Camry or accord at 185k; but not for $5,000.00.

They are generally tough cars but a LOT can happen in 185k. If its one owner and the car still runs fine and doesn't shudder or throw any red flags you should be fine but make a really hard effort to not pay $5k. One owner with no problems generally means they took care of it. Also when you talk to them you will be able to ask questions and KNOW if they have really maintained it or if they are feeding you a line. If you can't tell the difference then it's a fools folly I guess.

Now, I'm not going to start anything but any modern (last 15 years) GM/Dodge/Ford car that has that many miles I will genuinely pass on unless I give it a very thorough examination. They aren't known for lots of miles (like their trucks are) so if it gets that far with minimal problems its an exception to the rule. Not saying it can't or hasn't been done. The 3.8 engine was a bull. I abused mine forever before I sold it. Nary a problem.

Both of our vehicles have high mileage and they run fantastic. It's all how you maintain them.
Posted by: HTSS_TR

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 12:51 AM

Originally Posted By: Doog
I did meet a guy with a Lexus LS400 that had 800k on it. Original engine and 3rd transmission.

My 350+k miles LS400 has original engine and transmission.

The only engine parts that had been replaced were: spark plugs(3 times), water pump(once, few months ago along with radiator and third timing belt), distributors(once, 250k miles ago).

May need to replace the valve cover gasket on passenger side soon, or just tighten the bolts a little to stop a slow gasket leak.
Posted by: The Critic

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 01:07 AM

Originally Posted By: Doog

So you are advocating to pay up to $6000 annually plus higher insurance? Not a very good recommendation. If you put $2-3000 in annual maintenance in a 150k car it will most likely go another 150k and you don't suffer the additional cost of the depreciation. My best bet is a Certified Used car with 30-40k on it and a 100k warranty. Then drive it to 200k and sell it. If you do the math on that combo you will see it is the best of both worlds.


Yes.

The opportunity cost should be a serious consideration. Car payments are inexpensive compared to mortgage or rent payments. If you are able to eliminate a certain amount of uncertainty from your life rather easily, why wouldn't you?

If I had to tell my manager that I had to take off an hour to drop off the car at the shop every month or 2, that would become an issue. Likewise, if I hurt myself while working on the car during a weekend, that would be even worse. The key is to have a transportation solution that has the least disruption.

Depending on what your life and job situation is, trying to find the lowest dollar option for transportation may not be the most practical option. Look, those who have been on this site for a while know that I used to advocate for fixing older cars and keeping them near perfect, but the time spent is better spent elsewhere.
Posted by: mongo161

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 02:02 AM

IMO....it depends on how the auto was maintained.

I would much rather have a high mileage vehicle that was used predominantly for long trips. IMO....it's the older vehicle with low mileage and no service records that I would pass on buying.

IMO...A High Speed, long distance highway mileage vehicle is much better than a vehicle than had been garaged and short tripped with low mileage vehicle for it's entire life.

Long distance, High speed driving insures that all of the fluids are getting up to operating temp coupled with less engine wear than a short tripped vehicle in stop and go traffic.
Posted by: david_ES2

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 02:22 AM

Yeah if it was reguarly maintained and driven pretty long distances at a time, then 200k miles is like 100k short trip miles or less.
Posted by: SuzukiGoat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 02:26 AM

Bought my sidekick abused at 160k. For 2 grand. Dumped 3k into.suspension and tires. Another grand into parts and a upgraded radio.

Decoded to replace that motor with a dead cylinder at 200k. Another 2k.

8k for.a go anywhere full frame 4x4 suv that gets 22+ MPG and is engineered for the third world and will NEVER leave you stranded. Yeah. If I could find that new at twice the price ID buy it.

Mileage means less than maintenance.

If you do your own work...mechanically [censored] used cars with good paint jobs are the way to go.
Posted by: eljefino

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 04:45 AM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
Originally Posted By: Doog

So you are advocating to pay up to $6000 annually plus higher insurance? Not a very good recommendation. If you put $2-3000 in annual maintenance in a 150k car it will most likely go another 150k and you don't suffer the additional cost of the depreciation. My best bet is a Certified Used car with 30-40k on it and a 100k warranty. Then drive it to 200k and sell it. If you do the math on that combo you will see it is the best of both worlds.


Yes.

The opportunity cost should be a serious consideration. Car payments are inexpensive compared to mortgage or rent payments. If you are able to eliminate a certain amount of uncertainty from your life rather easily, why wouldn't you?

If I had to tell my manager that I had to take off an hour to drop off the car at the shop every month or 2, that would become an issue. Likewise, if I hurt myself while working on the car during a weekend, that would be even worse. The key is to have a transportation solution that has the least disruption.

Depending on what your life and job situation is, trying to find the lowest dollar option for transportation may not be the most practical option. Look, those who have been on this site for a while know that I used to advocate for fixing older cars and keeping them near perfect, but the time spent is better spent elsewhere.


I thought ram_man was trying to go to school to be a mechanic. It'd be foolish for him to pay $80/hr to skip working on it himself at a cost to himself of < $25/hr-- what a shop would pay him.

If one mail ordered parts or was able to pass a parts store on the way somewhere else, the ability to schedule repairs some evening/weekend at home would actually be more convenient than bringing it somewhere that's only open when their office is open... provided one's sweat is "free".
Posted by: nleksan

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 05:32 AM

I have about 190K on my 325i, and after the most recentmmajor work (the full suspension upgrade), it drives better than new. Engine is in completely perfect condition, with all cylinders having compression results within a 2-point range, and visual inspection during VCG replacement showed a completely spotless valvetrain.

I document every single thing done to my vehicles each in its own binder, the thinnest is about 2.5" thick and the thickest (my 328, for reasons you may know) is 4 binders full.
That's every receipt/report/service order/etc, pictures taken of new components upgrades before going on car, of the old ones still on the car, and the old next to the new off the car.

I also keep Excel sheets, multiple for each vehicle, to track maintenance, repairs, modifications, etc. I print out the latest filled page as completed.


I know that I can, and do, ask a premium for my cars when selling. OK, well, many times it's because the vehicle itself is rare, or is a rare configuration on an already desirable vehicle, ie a recently sold genuine Alpina B6 Bi-Turbo (Grey market import, low mileage, all original numbers, full records, and one of two in the color, not to mention that every Alpina item was intact which is nearly impossible to find outside of museum pieces). Over 20yr old, $72k in records from the SINGLE PO and myself, one of only (literally) a half dozen or so I the country, and the lowest mileage one that is driveable.
I had to sit firm for 5 months, asking $45k, and got a lot of ridiculously low offers. It seems like a lot, and it IS a lot of money, but people also pay more forgGrey market Nissan Skylines that aren't special cars anywhere much less where they're made, whereas this is a car rarer than a Ferrari Enzo.
It sold to a collector who has an impressive garage of rare BMW's, and it has since been sold back to Alpina (at the exact same price he bought it from me) for their own historical collection.

Since I buy cars, and sell cars, pretty often, I firmly believe that it's dishonest, no different than fraud, to sell a car as being in excellent condition if it's not, and for people like me who search for rare cars, it's ONLY AS GOOD AS YOU CAN PROVE, and that proof is in documentation.
Example: when looking for an M3, I had trouble finding the color combo I wanted. Eventually found a few, ranging from 48k to 129k miles, and from $18.5k to $26k in price. The 48k miles car was what I ended up buying, but it was owned by a fellow BMWCCA racer I know and I know for a fact it was never abused, tracked, or maintained in any way other than religiously.
The most expensive car, however, was the highest mileage. Now, all of these are Alpine White over Imola '06 Coupes w 6MT and Competition Package; rare combo, and I ignored cars w modifications (I always do, with some exception).
The $18.5k car had 88k miles, zero documentation, and the owner didn't seem to know jack about the car. The $26k car had documentation from day one of its nearly 130k miles, the owner was incredibly knowledgeable and willing to accommodate my need for proof of condition, had UOA done every 2nd change (every 15k) since new and had all the results, and so forth.
The car with nearly 130k miles was the second best driving car I found by far, I mean it wasn't even close.
The 88k mile car and a 59k mile car ($24.5k) were the worst, and just cursory inspection and I knew that I'd be spending a minimum of $7.5-10 THOUSAND dollars just to get them back into shape, which is insane. The owners were not flexible on price, and said that maintenance records "you can get what you need on carfax"....

I ended up sending my friend to the guy with the 130k mile car, and he bought it the next day.
It now has 183k and has been every bit as reliable as mine, which has over 100k fewer miles.

The other two mentioned come up for sale often, and are on their 7th and 9th owners. Every time they come up is 1k miles before a MAJOR service, yet it's never done...


So, I guess my point is...
Would you rather buy a car, at a premium regardless of miles, from a highly knowledgeable owner with insanely extensive history/documentation of the vehicle...
Or would you rather pay 15-25 percent less, but have little to no history of work, essentially gambling on the less expensive upfront costs being less than the guaranteed immediate maintenence costs?

I know my answer...
Posted by: KrisZ

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 06:16 AM

Originally Posted By: hattaresguy
I wouldn't buy a vehicle with spaceship mileage unless it was very cheap. For $5k your one transmission and a set of struts away from an $8k vehicle.

Considering said vehicle can be purchased for just over $20k new your paying a large premium for the most maintenance intensive period of the cars life.

The last 170k mile car I bought was in HS and I paid $300 for it. If something broke I junked it.


+1000

Paying $5k for a car with 150k miles is pure lunacy!
Posted by: KitaCam

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 07:20 AM

Camrys seem to be valued high(er) by their owners...somewhat unrealistically...

That said, OP should be able to find an 03-06 Camry for $4-6k WITH 100k miles or so...later model years have ABS/keyless entry, added value features that make the car worth more....85k miles is a BIG difference in terms of major part-repair/replacement costs...

Re: HTSS/lexus
....valve cover gaskets should be replaced when you replace spark plugs...more efficient labor cost-wise...
Posted by: fdcg27

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 07:41 AM

It depends upon the car and how it was used and maintained.
I sold a 207K Accord stick last fall that needed a few minor things, like its second timing belt service, a brake line and lower spark plug tube o-rings.
I wouldn't have hesitated to drive that car anywhere after doing this work.
Our '99 Accord stick was wrecked around the same time with about 175K.
That car still drove pretty much as new.
It ran well, shifted nicely and certainly didn't need any suspension work.
Either car would have made a good daily driver for another few years.
The thing is that you as a buyer would have no way of knowing this. I would have been truthful in describing the history of both cars and shown you the very good recent UOAs from each.
How much should you trust the average seller?
Keep in mind that the average seller may be entirely honest but may simply not know enough to understand where the car is mechnically and may also not recognize the symptoms of needed work.
OTOH, if the owner cared enough to keep the car clean in and out, then he probably also attended to needed maintenance and minor repairs.
Posted by: Pops1050

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 07:43 AM

I've owned several cars/trucks well into 200000's. Bought a 92 Toyota pickup plain jane new and a coworker has it now nearing 300,000 miles. Doog & The Critic both make good points and there are indeed 2 sides to this question. High mileage vehicles ain't for everyone. Age of vehicle may be more important than miles. Your situation and basic mechanical knowledge have to factor into your decision. $5000 IS on the high side for a basic ride with that kind of mileage.
Posted by: NHHEMI

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 07:55 AM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
185k?

I would not even consider a car with over 75k miles, myself.

150k is usually when most cars are towards the end of their life.


Same here but I am more a 50K max guy IF I were to buy used( which I don't ). 175K-185K not on your life however.
Posted by: NHHEMI

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 08:04 AM

Originally Posted By: ram_man
Originally Posted By: DirtyMoe21
What kinds of cars?


camrys and accords mostly
Im looking to spend 5000


I don't care what the car is if you are spending $5K or less and it is up near 200K I hope you have a lot of additional cash available for all the repairs you will face.
Posted by: ls1mike

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 10:50 AM

I don't know if anyone is advocating paying 5000 bucks for a car with that many miles on it. I sure would not unless it was a diesel truck.
I was just saying cars can last that long. Now if the OP can find a car he likes with those kind a miles it should be a deal 2500 dollars or less.
Posted by: Vikas

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 11:07 AM

Quote:
Based on what? These are fairly "cheap" cars that were not overbuilt. Even if a vehicle is well-maintained, it does wear out eventually. 150k is nearing that point.
Woh, how long have you been here TheCritic? Do you know what percentages of cars driven by BITOGer are over 150K miles? I am not a betting man but my guess is over 50% of the vehicles owned by BITOGers ae over 150K miles. Your perspective is completely wrong.
Posted by: Vikas

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 11:17 AM

If you have need to have absolute reliable "bet your job" vehicle on every single working day, you are much better off leasing the cheapest vehicle that you can get. That way your chances of never breaking down during the lease period are small.

Then I am with you TheCritic. Old cars are for people who can afford to call in "car problem" and still keep the job and/or have alternate means of transport when the vehicle breaks down. As you said, lease on cheap car is lot less than the mortgage.
Posted by: yesthatsteve

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 11:18 AM

Originally Posted By: typ901
Maintenance history is what I look for. Miles sure, but condition of the vehicle is my first priority.


This.

With a $5k budget, base your purchase on 3 things: condition, condition, condition.

If you have the time, wait for one with a stack of maintenance receipts. In any case, a pre-purchase inspection from a trusted independent mechanic is worth every dime.
Posted by: jeepman3071

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 11:52 AM

For me, maintenance done on the car is more important than mileage.

I'd rather buy a 200k mile car with a stack of maintenance records than a 90k mile car with original drive train fluids in it.

My Jeep had only 84k when I bought it, and soon after I found out that the previous owner probably changed the oil a few times and that was it. Every single fluid that came out of it was nasty.
Posted by: sciphi

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 12:52 PM

Condition matters more than mileage.
Posted by: hattaresguy

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/20/14 07:19 PM

Originally Posted By: The Critic
Originally Posted By: Doog

So you are advocating to pay up to $6000 annually plus higher insurance? Not a very good recommendation. If you put $2-3000 in annual maintenance in a 150k car it will most likely go another 150k and you don't suffer the additional cost of the depreciation. My best bet is a Certified Used car with 30-40k on it and a 100k warranty. Then drive it to 200k and sell it. If you do the math on that combo you will see it is the best of both worlds.


Yes.

The opportunity cost should be a serious consideration. Car payments are inexpensive compared to mortgage or rent payments. If you are able to eliminate a certain amount of uncertainty from your life rather easily, why wouldn't you?

If I had to tell my manager that I had to take off an hour to drop off the car at the shop every month or 2, that would become an issue. Likewise, if I hurt myself while working on the car during a weekend, that would be even worse. The key is to have a transportation solution that has the least disruption.

Depending on what your life and job situation is, trying to find the lowest dollar option for transportation may not be the most practical option. Look, those who have been on this site for a while know that I used to advocate for fixing older cars and keeping them near perfect, but the time spent is better spent elsewhere.


I generally agree. I have daily driven very old 20-25 year old cars with almost 300k miles on them. But they were in good shape and reliable because I went threw them, also because Mercedes just builds a good car, especially of that vintage.

Having said that most people who DD classic vehicles its not their only vehicle. They forget to mention that! If the old 300SD gets cranky at 7am on a Tuesday morning they have another one to get into or a 2013 Acura sitting next to it!

If you go to an old car forum and see people DD older vehicles they either have a fleet so at least one is running, or they have a late model car in their somewhere.

Also what they gloss over is at that point it becomes a hobby vehicle and requires a great amount of time. If you enjoy it and I did that's fantastic, just like your detailing its what you enjoy.

The flip side is you have people with more time than money and they just can't afford much so they make do with older cars.

IMHO cars are a waste of time, so they are either DD and I demand a certain level of reliability out of them, or they are toys and at that point it doesn't matter. Its like guys who try to run old equipment and trucks, all the do is blow pumps and break and lose them money.


If I had only $5k to spend on a vehicle (been their) I'd buy the newest, cleanest whatever I could find. Run it cheaply, and concentrate on improving my financial situation so when it blows I wouldn't have to look at 170k mile old cars anymore. My 2 cents.
Posted by: SuzukiGoat

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/21/14 02:31 AM

What I find funny about this thread is...take note of what brands of cars the naysayers in here have in their signature.

All but a very small number are driving vehicles I wouldn't consider all that reliable when NEW much less over 100k.

ID put a first Gen scion xb auto with 150k miles abstract maintenance records against ANY new car for a longevity/reliability test.

Some cars are built to deal with abuse. Others...others require love and teender care all the time. Some are worth it...Alphas for example. Others aren't worth the fluids going into their poorly built components.
Posted by: Jarlaxle

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/21/14 08:09 AM

Originally Posted By: NHHEMI
Originally Posted By: ram_man
Originally Posted By: DirtyMoe21
What kinds of cars?


camrys and accords mostly
Im looking to spend 5000


I don't care what the car is if you are spending $5K or less and it is up near 200K I hope you have a lot of additional cash available for all the repairs you will face.


Assumes facts not in evidence!
Posted by: Jarlaxle

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/21/14 08:17 AM

Note: the wrecker my wife is driving now has 585,000 miles!
Posted by: arkainzeye

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/22/14 10:33 AM

Now i can only speak from what i own. and i own both the camry and accord.

camry 2007 4cyl

accord 2005 v6 Ex-l

would i buy these models & years again. NO WAY IN [censored]! both have been maintenance hogs. the toyota big time! both cars have 73k-77k miles. had i known about the honda transmission issues before had i would not have purchased it. My honda has nickel and dimed me pretty hard.. im not bashing.. just telling my lil story..

http://www.carcomplaints.com/worst_vehicles/
Posted by: PandaBear

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 01/23/14 03:44 PM

I'd worry more about years than miles. It really depends on the condition, if it is all highway and maintained well it should be OK, but it is not for someone who has never learned how to inspect a car and never did any maintenance work themselves.
Posted by: otis24

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 02/02/14 02:41 PM

Well, since I own a high mileage car (180k), I know what automobiles are capable of. Granted, I purchased this one new. If I knew a vehicle's previous owner and history, it would not bother me as long as it is priced accordingly. Risk/benefit, higher miles equal higher risk, benefit of lower price for taking the risk.
Posted by: Merkava_4

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 02/02/14 04:01 PM

It depends on how the car was driven and how well the car was maintained. My Buick has been getting an oil change every 2000 miles since I bought it from the original owner in 2005. It just so happens that 2000 miles arrives at the 6 month oil change mark.
Posted by: Anies

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 02/02/14 07:28 PM

My father purchased used cars with varying mileage ever since coming to the states in the 70's. Mostly Gm station wagons but for the price and having to raise a family he rarely had issues besides the normal wear and tear and maintenance items. Drove all of them into the 200-300k range as a third owner.

Really depends on the car and today more than ever the owner. The older generation imo were more maintenance aware than todays (besides us bitog members)
Posted by: Anthony

Re: how important are miles when car shoppping - 02/02/14 08:21 PM

150k for a BITOGER is just breaking in no matter the car manufacture.

My daily driver is a 95 V6 Nissan Pickup with 170k ,and it's showing no signs of slowing down. I drive it confidently 430 miles a week for my work commute.

My dad daily drives his 01 Supercharged Frontier with 255k. All electronics and vehicle systems work perfectly except the factory 6 disc CD changer stopped working awhile ago. This truck still has the OEM starter , and alternator.