Author Topic: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q  (Read 3210 times)

RapmasterD

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I have to believe I'm not the only one in this position. Here goes.

I own a 2001 Subaru Forester with nearly 130K miles on it. Starting last February I dramatically decreased my weekly use of the car. I''m now typically driving no more than 150 miles per week and often much less. So to be conservative, let's say 7,500 miles per year, even though I'm currently much closer to 6,000 miles per year.

QUESTION: My maintenance increments are 7,500. Do I go with miles? Do I go with time? Do I go with a combination? In my mind, combination would equal -- Go with miles for everything but change the oil, regardless of mileage, twice per year.

I don't/won't do any service myself and want to do everything I'm supposed to, maintenance-wise.

Thanks.

SDREMNGR

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2014, 04:31:05 PM »
I like the plan.  Seems very reasonable. 

bacchi

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2014, 04:54:13 PM »
I have 65,000 miles on my 2003. Yes, change the oil every 6 months.

You can still follow the mileage maintenance increments but you've got to keep an eye on your engine. For example, my car needs a new timing belt at 120k but belts also degrade with heat and age. Not replacing it in time would literally ruin the engine. Your hoses will also degrade. Just pop the hood after an oil change and examine the belts and hoses. If they're looking frayed or old, take it in. You can also have the shop take a look if it's not one of those oil-only places.

Oh, replacing the air filter and cabin air filter is very, very, easy. Don't let the oil change places charge you for it.

RapmasterD

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2014, 05:29:11 PM »
I have 65,000 miles on my 2003. Yes, change the oil every 6 months.

You can still follow the mileage maintenance increments but you've got to keep an eye on your engine. For example, my car needs a new timing belt at 120k but belts also degrade with heat and age. Not replacing it in time would literally ruin the engine. Your hoses will also degrade. Just pop the hood after an oil change and examine the belts and hoses. If they're looking frayed or old, take it in. You can also have the shop take a look if it's not one of those oil-only places.

Oh, replacing the air filter and cabin air filter is very, very, easy. Don't let the oil change places charge you for it.

Thanks bacchi. Good counsel on all. Yup on the filter counsel in particular.

Drive belts were replaced six years ago @ ~ 77,000 miles.

Hoses were replaced nearly four years ago @ nearly 100,000 miles.

Timing belt was replaced nearly four years ago @ nearly 100,000 miles.




Primm

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2014, 07:08:24 PM »
Rubber deteriorates over time as well, so things like tyres, fuel lines and fan belts will "go off" regardless of whether you use them. Not quite as quickly, but they'll still need replacing. I'm assuming a 2001 Subaru will have air cond as standard too, so it would be a good idea to run that fairly regularly to keep the seals lubricated.

CarDude

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2014, 07:19:34 PM »
Lots of good advice already. Just basically be sure to run the car at regular intervals. It's much better to drive 10 miles once a week instead of 40 miles once a month, which itself is much better than driving 480 miles once a year.

Ozstache

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2014, 07:38:43 PM »
Brake fluid and coolant are two other time, not mileage, critical change outs. It is usually two to three years max on both, as specified in your car's handbook.

dragoncar

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2014, 08:32:12 PM »
It definitely depends on the maintenance item.  I usually google "replace x miles vs time" or something similar and find the answer on car forums.  In general, rubber and fluids seem to be more time based whereas metal seems more miles based (engine adjustment and spark plugs for example).

RapmasterD

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2014, 09:17:00 AM »
Thanks all.

I drive about 14 miles per day...about five days per week, on average...sometimes more. And typically another 25 miles or so on the weekend max.

I deserve many a face punch -- e.g., I gladly take my car to the DEALER for all service. My former Acura dealer was a legendary P.O.S., but the Subaru dealer in these parts is simply outstanding, and yes...fair.

And my driving is down from 56 miles per day weekday commute to the current status. So I give myself a full body hug for that one. Just this past weekend, I walked and biked a total of 19 miles instead of driving. So I give myself a full body hug for that one as well.

Great tip on the brake fluids...and rubber versus metal.

BlueMR2

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Re: It's not the years it's the miles (or is it...?)-CAR MAINTENANCE Q
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2014, 10:08:32 AM »
I deserve many a face punch -- e.g., I gladly take my car to the DEALER for all service. My former Acura dealer was a legendary P.O.S., but the Subaru dealer in these parts is simply outstanding, and yes...fair.

Some dealers are reasonable and fair.  I use a local dealer for work on my Toyota on occasion (and I'm a gearhead that likes to do a lot of my own work).