T Nation

Car Question


#1

I'm transferring from FIU in Miami, FL to UCF in Orlando, FL in the fall. I'm going to be taking my 1994 Toyota Corolla w/ 70,000+ miles on it. This car has never given one single problem. EVER. My parents are nervous that the car won't make the trip because it's "old." Should I take it to a mechanic for a check up or would that be unnecessary?

Fact:I don't know shit about cars. Question: Are there any addons that could possibly improve the miles per gallon on a gasoline car?


#2

Dude I have a toyota with 175,000 miles on it and it's still running strong, 70k is like new.


#3

I can't tell you whether your car will make the trip or not. Have you been keeping up on all the general maintenance (oil changes, transmission services, air filters, tire checks, etc.)? If you have, then 70,000 miles isn't much. If you aren't confident, bring it to a mechanic. Better safe than sorry, as my Momma always used to say.

For the gas mileage, this is largely a factor of maintenance also. It will help to change all fluids to synthetics, especially the transmission and differential fluids. Change the air filter and the fuel filter. The biggest improvements will be made by adjusting your driving habits: do not accelerate quickly off of the line, keep your speed at o below 65, etc. Basically, drive like there is a raw egg on your pedals. (Personally, I sacrifice a little gas to have fun driving!)

Good luck at UCF

Jeff


#4

We had a 1994 Geo Prizm. It is the exsact same car with a different nameplate. When we finally got rid of it in 2000, it had over 150,000 miles and had only had the sparkplugs changed.

Those cars will run forever. Damn Japanese workmanship.


#5

Coming from a Cadillac Technician (when not deployed). Save yourself the possible pain and take your car to a GOOD mechanic. Ask around because their are alot of bad ones!!! Avoid placed like Midas and Jiffy Lube!!! A dealer is usually more expensive but they also usually have better experinced techs. Something very small that an experienced tech knows to look for can save you many headaches and lots of money in the end. Just tell them about yuor trip and that you want to make sure everyhint is ok. Most places will just charge you for a half hour inspection. That would be around $45 dollars for my dealership. Good luck with your trip. If you think you are being robbed pm me and i can try to help, I am on Leave now but will be traveling back to my Base from Sunday to Wed though.
Dastang


#6

Dude, what is that, like a 5-6 hour trip? Get real. If you were driving from Cali to Florida, then a different story, but come on. Grow some balls! Plus, of hugenormous importance: it's a Toyota! Yeah, it's ~12 years old, but that is damn low on the mileage. And Toyotas are notorious for lasting forever with hardly even an oil change. If you are tight on the budget, cover the basics (fluids, brakes, tires, etc.) and drive conservatively (like 60 instead of 90), as in general, older cars don't handle high speeds as well as newer models.

Bastard


#7

Guys, a thanks a million for the great advice. I appreciate it very much.


#8

I've got a 1995 Corolla with 125,000 miles on it. Got it late 1994. Runs like a champ. No worries.


#9

Check or change all your fluids before you go depending on the schedule.

No worries.


#10

Toyotas, hondas, and Nissans...all they're engines aren't even considered broken in untill 100k.

I still buy American though dammit! 03 Chevy Silverado, 71 Chevelle...love the bowties!


#11

Would anybody know about how to find out the average lifespan in miles of your toyota? I have a Corolla w/ just 50K miles. Runs like a champ.


#12

with so many cars with so many different ways to treat and drive them, there's really no way to find out what the average life span of any car is. There's just way too many variables involved. I would venture a guess that 150k with no problems is a fairly safe bet for most vehicles these days...But again, that depends on how it's driven and taken care of.


#13

With 70K, you'll be due a timing belt change pretty soon. Moderately expensive (probably $275-$350, depending on where you have it done), but absolutely necessary. Other than that, just change the oil regularly, and drive it! We just traded in an '88 4Runner with 326,000 miles.