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MAP Weighs In On Service Intervals For High-Mileage Older Vehicles

In response to shops and consumers seeking guidance on how best to maintain older vehicles, the Motorist Assurance Program (MAP) has issued a position statement on service intervals beyond the vehicle’s original maintenance schedule.

This comes at a time when consumers are keeping their vehicles longer and the average age of a vehicle on the road is more than 10 years old. In many of these older vehicles, the odometer reading already exceeds the mileage intervals listed in the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule. Motorists and shops both question whether these vehicles require more or less maintenance at such an advanced age and mileage.

MAP contacted several vehicle manufacturers and asked which maintenance services they recommend for vehicles on the road and well beyond the intervals listed in the service schedule. Although none the OEMs offered a documented policy, virtually all stated that those vehicles should be maintained according to the original schedule and that neither more nor less maintenance was beneficial.

Therefore, MAP has issued the following:

“Many consumers are holding onto their vehicles longer — sometimes well into the second hundred-thousand miles and beyond. As a general rule, higher-mileage vehicles should follow the same routine or periodic service intervals as lower-mileage vehicles, based on conditions in which the vehicles is operated, to help maintain performance reliability.

“In some cases, the original vehicle manufacturer addresses these continuing service intervals in the owner’s or maintenance manual(s), or through instrument panel service indicators. However, some vehicle manufacturers’ recommendations are no longer listed after a specific time or mileage interval.

“It is the position of the Motorist Assurance Program (MAP) that, in the absence of original vehicle manufacturers’ recommended service intervals (beyond the original schedule), vehicle owners should revert to and repeat the original time and mileage service interval schedule, or as advised by the instrument panel service indicator.”

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