How long do cars last?

Share article:

4 min read

Here’s a truth bomb: Cars don’t last forever.

But here’s a tip: There will be various issues with your car along the way, but there are solutions that can keep your car alive longer.

And here’s some insider information: When your car has finally reached its final destination, Peddle will pick it up and pay you for it—as soon as tomorrow. Yes, you read that correctly. Peddle gives its customers cash for junk cars. Or well-loved cars. Or old gems. We take ‘em rusty and crummy-looking too!

Ahead we explore the common stages in a car’s life, what you can do along the way, and what to do when a non-working car is taking up physical and mental space.

what’s the average lifespan of a car?

The expected lifespan of today’s vehicles is twelve years or 200,000 miles (300,000 for electric cars). The average U.S vehicle lifespan was just 5.1 years in 1969—since 2001, the average life of a car has increased approximately one year every five years. We’re definitely moving in the right direction!

what are the big milestones in a car’s life?

When your car hits a certain mileage, you may think to treat it like a birthday and celebrate each moment, proving you made a successful purchase. Conversely, you may worry that with each uptick on the odometer, you’re inching closer to the end of your car’s life. Here’s what you can do at different mile markers to ensure your car is running as long as possible.

5,000 miles: Change your oil. If your car is older, schedule an appointment every 3,000 miles.

10,000 miles: Rotate the tires.

36,000 miles: Your car’s manufacturer warranty has most likely expired. It’s best to take your car in before this mile marker and for a systems check under “bumper to bumper” warranty—this may include suspension, heating and air conditioning, car audio, and brake inspection.

50,000 miles: Watch out for a water pump failure. A suggested approach is to replace the brake pads, install a new fuel filter, drain and replace the automatic transmission fluid and filter, and inspect the exhaust system, muffler, catalytic converter, and suspension components.

100,000 miles: Watch out! This is when things can turn sour. Quickly. Add high mileage coolants and spark plugs, schedule a thorough bumper-to-bumper inspection that includes assessments of the transmission, water pump, and timing belt. Additionally, clean the fuel injectors, inspect the chassis, and check the catalytic converter for damage to ensure the car isn’t releasing harmful pollutants.

200,000 miles: Alright, you can gloat. Impressive! Enjoy every day you can with that trusty ol’ (four-wheel) pal, but when things start to go awry––you know where to find us.

what can be done to extend the life of a car?

Purchasing a car, driving a car, and maintaining a car are all three separate aspects of the four-wheel experience. But how much effort do we put into maintaining our cars? For starters, your car’s owner’s manual contains a lot of useful information that will keep your car running longer—specific oil types, fluids, and parts are all highlighted within. Spending time flipping through its pages will help you and your car out in the long run. Another easy rule to follow is keeping your car in shaded areas whenever possible. Whether parking inside a garage or underneath a tree, keeping your car cool will protect its paint and interior.

what do I do once my car dies?

Womp womp. It’s the end of the road for your beloved car and while you may be bummed, you’re probably wondering what to do next. Thankfully, Peddle can handle everything from here—if you didn’t know, “cash for junk cars” is kinda our thing. Just go to our website (wahoo, you’re already here), answer a dozen-ish questions, receive a fair-and-square offer (based on market value), have your car picked up, and get your money, honey—that day.

Regardless of the trials and tribulations you’ve faced along the way, Peddle will be there for the final stop on your car’s journey—with cash (or check) in hand.