Approaching 200k km on the odometer

Garwin Beukes - ​Over the past few weeks we spoke about life after service plan and all the nightmares to expect when you're buying a car with more than 200 000 kilometres on the odometer.

So how do you preserve a car that's well n it's way to the 200k mark? Well firstly, acceptance is the first step.

This is something I am currently battling with. I own a “burnt orange” 2011 Volkswagen Polo Vivo that has exaclty 169 750 km on the meter. I've been hanging on to the car's youth but decided to make peace with the fact that she's becoming an adult.

So from my perspective, here's how to deal with it:

  • Prevention is better than cure. Replacing parts (or getting them fixed) will save you a lot more than waiting till something snaps to replace it.
  • If you detect any squeak, see an access of oil or notice something strange about your car, immediately have it checked.

  • Have a qualified mechanic run through your entire car to check for problematic areas that might give you problems.
  • No quick fixes. About a month ago the pulley on my air-conditioning pump started squeaking. So I popped the cap on the front of the pump and resorted to anti rust and contact spray lubricate the pulley. Two weeks later the sound returned and this time worse. It's a no-brainer, if I was to continue this process I would've damaged my entire air-conditioning pump. Fortunately I had it repaired professionally.
  • Take it easy on the car. The older the car, the more fragile it becomes. Don't drive it as hard as you used to.
  • Look at the finer details - always ensure your wheel nuts are tightened, check your water and oil levels as well as all the other fluids frequently.

If you have some more tips on how to maintain you older vehicle, let us know!