Car Care Month: Maintenance Mileage Checklist

October 23rd, 2023 by

Whether you’ve recently purchased a new or used vehicle, it’s important to know the stages of mileage in which certain maintenance items should be addressed. The checklist we’ll explore today, as we close out Fall Car Care Month, includes major milestones, and minor ones within those. Though some tasks may seem more costly and won’t appear to be immediately necessary, the wisest car owner is a proactive one, not a reactive one. So be sure to follow this timeline based on your vehicle’s mileage, and you’ll get significantly more life out of it. 

Maintenance From 0-30,000 Miles

The maintenance tasks included in this range are important at any stage of your car’s life. However, some of them will need to be done more often as your vehicle ages. 

If you’re driving the first 5,000 miles of your car’s life, you should be getting the first oil change at around 5,000 miles. However, if you do have a used vehicle that is close to this mileage count, it’s possible that the seller took care of the oil change before you bought it, so that’s worth checking on and adjusting your timeline accordingly. Whatever your timeline ends up being, an oil change every 5,000 miles is important to follow.

When you hit the 10,000-mile mark, you should be scheduling a tire rotation, if you haven’t already. This is a task best done every 6,000-8,000 miles during the early life of your vehicle. Also, consider cutting down on your trips to the auto shop by having your tires rotated whenever you get your oil changed. 

Finally, somewhere in the range of 15,000-20,000 miles, you should have your engine air filter checked/replaced and replace your brake pads. If you do start hearing your brakes squeak at any point, they should be checked and potentially replaced at that time.

Maintenance From 30,000-60,000 Miles

Even though you may have already replaced your brake pads, once you hit 30,000 miles, you should be changing out the brake fluid as well. This task can be done at home by draining your current fluid and replacing it with newly purchased fluid from an auto parts store. 

An important milestone that falls within this range is 36,000 miles, which is when most manufacturers’ warranties tend to expire. This is a good time to get an extensive checkup on all systems covered under your warranty. These typically include suspension, heating and air conditioning, and your audio system. 

After this, 50,000 miles is the next major milestone in your maintenance schedule. At this time, you should replace brake pads (unless you have done so recently). This is also an excellent time to consider replacing your tires. Important signs of a need for replacement include uneven or excessively worn tread, cracking or cuts, bulges or blisters, and excessive vibration. Most of these are caused by uneven alignment, so that’s an important thing to take care of whenever you have your tires serviced. 

You should also be checking the belts, valves, hoses, and your battery around 50,000 miles. The battery is a particularly important part to pay attention to here, as it can be a major pain to have this die on you unexpectedly. Batteries last around five years but can die sooner depending on how much mileage you put on your car.

Maintenance From 60,000-100,000 Miles

Your car will be nearing a crucial point in its lifespan during this range of miles. How well you’ve maintained it up to this point will determine how much longer it will last. A well-maintained car should be able to get well over 200,000 miles. So take extra care to treat the vehicle well as you approach 100,000 miles.

At 75,000 miles, you should flush and replace your power steering fluid. And at 90,000 miles, change out the rubber hoses throughout your car’s body. This rubber can crack and break over time, so replace these before a major leak occurs when a hose breaks. 

As you approach the 100,000-mile mark, the last things to take care of are transmission fluid and spark plugs. Both of these will need to either be replaced or upgraded to high-mileage versions to ensure your car operates properly past 100,000 miles. 

Beyond 100,000 Miles

Certain parts and functions can start to break down at this stage which will end up expensive to repair or replace. Notable parts among these include the entire AC system, the transmission system, and the suspension. 

Even if you’ve taken care to service those parts over the course of your ownership of the car, it is always possible that these integral systems can fail entirely and require a costly replacement or repair. But until that happens, continue to replace coolants, brake fluid, shocks, and struts, and get your alignment and suspension inspected as you approach 125,000 miles. 

And though those may be the most crucial parts to monitor beyond 100,000 miles, everything that we’ve mentioned up until this point remains important. So keep changing the oil, rotating the tires, checking your air filter, and inspecting your brake pads. 

With all of these things taken care of on time and ahead of any issues arising, your car will do well in the 200,000+ mile range. 

If your vehicle is in need of any of the services or inspections we’ve mentioned here, schedule a visit today with our excellent service department at Kia Country of Charleston.