Home / Buying a Car / Is it Wise to Buy a Car With High Mileage? 5 Used Car Tips

Is it Wise to Buy a Car With High Mileage? 5 Used Car Tips


The average mileage per year for most people’s cars is 12,000 to 15,000. With all the wear and tear on your vehicle throughout its lifetime, you’ll want an inspection every few years or so – even if it seems like nothing has changed!

When your car has driven over 100,000 miles, that’s when most people say a car has high mileage. Once your vehicle hits the 100,000 miles mark, you’ll start seeing more issues with different car parts such as belts, tires, or hoses, which can lead to major engine issues if left unchecked for too long.

Is it wise to buy a car with high mileage? Most experts agree that buying a higher mileage and newer car is better than one with less mileage that is older. There are many benefits to buying a car with relatively high mileage, especially if it’s still under warranty. You can avoid the top of the depreciation curve, so you end up losing less money in the long run.

Miles matter when deciding how often the average car owner should service his/her own ride because every time someone drives over one million miles, they’re basically pushing the limits, especially if the car has the original engine and transmission.

Since the car went through a lot of stress driving around town or on the road, it will definitely require more regular maintenance than most cars. It would also add the fact that you will have to get the car inspected more often to make sure it’s roadworthy.

What mileage is too high for a used car?

Ferrari 458 Spider Used Car

Buying a high mileage car is not that bad as long as it has been properly maintained and you have a good understanding of the kind of wear and tear the car has. Once the vehicle reaches 100,000 miles, it may require more frequent maintenance and replacement of worn-out parts.

There’s no set number of miles that will cause a used car to fail. However, 200,000 or more might be too many for the vehicle. It is not wise to buy a car that already has 300,000 miles or more on the odometer.

If you do decide to buy a car with higher miles, make sure that it’s still under warranty or that you have the budget in case the car undergoes prompt repairs or major service. However, finding an older car with very low mileage is not always possible.

Cars with high mileage will always have a shorter lifespan than those with lower mileage. The car’s overall dependability will decrease as well as its gas mileage, and it will likely require much more frequent maintenance.

If you don’t know how to inspect a vehicle with high mileage, we suggest searching for a mechanic to help you verify the car’s conditions. Problems like carbon build-up or worn spark plugs are common in older cars, and they can affect the car’s reliability.

Benefits of Owning A Car With High Mileage

Higher mileage cars can be great for those who do not drive very frequently and who choose to take good care of their cars. It will likely come with a higher price tag than other cars, but you can save money with lower maintenance costs and fewer repairs if the owner has taken proper care of the car.

People who buy high mileage used cars often plan on using the car for very specific purposes and do not expect them to last much longer than a few years or so. Since the cars that fit into this category are usually in good working order and require little to no preventative maintenance, they make great second vehicles.

As long as the car’s engine has received consistent lubrication, regular maintenance, and normal repairs, it should be fine. Make sure to take the car in for a thorough inspection before buying to see if there are any issues that need immediate attention.

A car buyer who is trying to get a good deal out of an old car should look at high mileage used cars. Depending on how many miles the vehicle has, it may still be covered by its warranty. Here is where it might be worth more to purchase from a private party instead of a dealership.

At what mileage should I not buy a car?

New cars lose their value rapidly the moment they are driven off the lot. Even 1-year-old cars can be considered a “new car” because there is not much wear and tear.

In comparison, a vehicle that is 5-8 years old will have most of its depreciation behind it, and this will give you a chance to get a great value for your dollar.

A good mileage should be anything close to 10,000 per year because it will be better for your budget. Cars with mileage over 100,000 miles should be avoided if possible because they can have a host of unforeseen issues.

5 Things To Do Before Buying High Mileage Cars

High mileage vehicles are generally more affordable than their lower mileage counterparts, but it helps to be prepared before you start shopping for a vehicle with high mileage.

Most modern cars nowadays come equipped with high-end technology and electronic gadgets, and this requires skilled and experienced mechanics.

A car owner who plans on maintaining his/her own vehicle should have some knowledge about its systems, fuel injectors, and the working of the engine. Here are some of the things you should consider doing before buying a car with higher miles:

#1 Check Vehicle History Report

The car’s history will be the meat and bones of your decision. Before heading to the dealer’s lot, find out everything you can about the car in question by checking its history report.

You can buy a vehicle history report online or via mail for only $20-$80 (cost depending on your location), but it will be well worth your money because there are many things that can arise that might not be beneficial for you.

You should evaluate how many owners the car has had and where it was kept. Find out if the car has ever been in any accidents or for what reasons the mileage accumulated over the years. If the previous owner was consistent with the maintenance schedule, it would be reflected in the service history.

If the previous owner kept good care of the car, you would likely have a much easier time finding replacements for parts and repairs. The more you know about the car’s history, the better. This way, you ensure that you are purchasing a reliable car that has not had a tough life.

#2 Verify Odometer Reading

Lower miles on an odometer reading typically translates into less carbon buildup and fewer engine problems. The last thing you want is to buy a high mileage vehicle only to find out the odometer has been tampered with.

Unfortunately, it can be difficult to tell if an odometer has been changed since many states do not require car dealerships and repair shops to replace this upon repairing the car’s exterior or interior after an accident.

The average mileage of an old car rounds up to about 10,000 miles a year. If the car is 5-8 years old and has 30,000 miles on, it seems unusually low, and the chances are that something isn’t right because you should be looking at an odometer reading of 80,000+ unless the previous owners only used the car on occasions.

#3 Revise Maintenance Records

You should also ask for all maintenance records because having these can tell you if, when, how often, and by who the repairs were done throughout its life. This will give you an idea of the car’s overall condition and how well it was taken care of.

People who have maintained a car for a long time can be very particular about their cars, and they take good care of them with regular maintenance. This would likely apply to higher mileage vehicles, making such cars reliable in most cases.

#4 Get a Pre-purchase Inspection

To ensure that you are getting a reliable vehicle, ask for a pre-purchase inspection. This will give you an idea of the car’s condition and if there are any underlying problems that you had not anticipated, such as rust, carbon buildup, electrical issues, etc.

The cost of this inspection is typical $100-$400 (cost depending on your location), but it can save you thousands down the road or even from purchasing the wrong used car.

You should also learn as much as you can about how to inspect a car yourself because this will allow you to have more trust in the used vehicle you are interested in and because mechanics are humans, sometimes may miss one damage or two.

#5 Confirm the Overall Performance

Before you go car shopping, make sure you get in the driver’s seat, and test drive the vehicle around to see how well everything works. If there is shaking or shuddering when traveling at higher speeds, this may be a sign that the car is in need of replacement and could cost you thousands down the road.

You should also try taking it on highways to see if there are any issues when accelerating and maintaining high speeds. You should pay attention to any popping, creaking, or rattling noise that occurs while driving because these can lead to expensive problems and a decrease in the resale value.

Once you find that car with good mileage, you should take it out for a test drive. Verify if it had regular oil changes in the past. This way, you can make sure the engine is in better shape than most engines, and you will not need to rebuild it.

How often the oil is replaced tells a lot about how well the engine performed, and if the oil flows properly, it will tell you how the engine was built. Sometimes cars that have been driving under harsh winter conditions can cause hardening of the oil and trail particles.

How Do You Maintain A High Mileage Vehicle

Keeping up with tires and wheels of used cars

Replacing parts like the timing belt, tires, brakes, windshield wipers, air filters are a very important part of high mileage vehicles. Despite the age of your used car, it will most likely perform better than any other similar vehicle that has not been driven as much.

Keeping your car clean will really make a difference in preventing paint damage. Keep your car waxed every now and then to protect the paint from rusting or corrosion. Once you have decided on buying a certain vehicle, try to review the maintenance schedule and follow it to the letter.

Purchasing a used car is actually a very smart thing to do because you can get an almost new vehicle at low-cost resale value. Constant oil changes will improve the lifespan of your car. In addition, it will also help you from spending a lot on repairs if the vehicle has been taken care of properly by its previous owner.

If you notice that the car has a custom license plate holder, it usually means that the car had been thoroughly inspected and kept up for a long time. Always buy a car with low mileage, because it will run and drive like a new car, and the overall condition is usually much better than other used cars.

Is it good to buy a high mileage car with 300,000 miles?

One of the things to evaluate when buying a car is how many miles it has on it. Generally speaking, the more miles a car has on it and the older it is, the less money you should pay.

Most experts recommend staying away from getting high mileage cars that have 300,000 plus miles on them. Instead, they suggest getting low mileage vehicles to prevent any future expenses.

Anything over 100,000 miles on a used car might indicate that the car is not in its best shape. If you are to purchase any vehicle with high mileage, make sure it has oil change records on file, and the engine has been serviced.


The mileage and age of a vehicle both have an effect on its value. They are, nevertheless, not closely related. Used cars with a high mileage tend to be less expensive than the same car with very low mileage.

It is important to remember that a car’s age does not directly influence the price. However, it is essential to know how many miles are on a used car you’re thinking of buying. This can be determined by looking at the car’s odometer.

No matter what type of car you choose to buy, it is very important that you know its history. Try to find out as much as you can about the vehicle and its previous owners. You should look for any signs of accident or flood-related damage. This will help you avoid a lot of future repairs and problems.

Last Updated on: July 14, 2022

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