PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Taking care of and holding on to a reliable car, rather than buying or leasing a new one every few years, is a smart financial move, especially with the high price of new and used cars
Used car prices are down from record highs, however, still a lot more than usual, and the Troubleshooters are getting many complaints about increased prices and fees for new cars.
So, here are some ways to get your existing car or your next one to 200,000 miles or beyond.
"Stay on top of problems and follow the maintenance schedule for your car. And don't delay routine oil and filter changes, belt replacements, or tire rotations," said Mike Quincy, Consumer Reports Auto Editor.
But how often you should service your car can vary depending on climate and other factors.
If you live where the weather is extreme or if you drive in lots of traffic, shorter service intervals may be necessary.
Also, check your owner's manual and be aware, that cutting corners and buying less expensive parts is not better.
"Make sure to always buy original equipment or equivalent parts, like belts and hoses from name-brand suppliers. You don't have to buy from the dealer, but make sure you're buying quality parts," said Quincy.
Using the wrong oil or transmission fluid could wreak havoc on your car, or even void your warranty.
And if you're looking to reach 200K miles with your next car, start with a vehicle that has a proven track record of rock-solid reliability.
Every year Consumer Reports surveys its members, and from hundreds of thousands of responses identifies the most reliable, problem-free vehicles that can go 200,000 miles or more with proper care.
"If you're looking to buy a new car that will take you beyond 200,000 miles, our data shows you can't go wrong with Toyota Camry or Prius or a Honda Accord," said Quincy.
Those are also good options as used cars, as are the Honda Civic, Mazda 3, Nissan Altima, and Subaru Legacy.
Also, never ignore those service indicator lights. If you don't know what they mean, find out.