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How Long Can My Honda Civic Last??

redpathmanredpathman Member Posts: 3
edited May 2015 in Honda

writing from Canada.

I have a 1998 Honda Civic EX with about 125,000 miles on it. Bought it in 2000 with about 13,000 miles on it.
This car is amazing. Runs like the day I bought it. Nothing wrong with it. I've followed the maintenance guide meticulously and I'm about to start at the beginning of the guide again. I've decided to keep it as long as possible. It's turning into a bit of a project to see how long it will last.
The paint shines like new. I have it rustproofed every year.

On my 3rd set of tires, 2nd battery. A/C still works good.

My dealer tells me they have some customers with over 375,000 miles on their Civics and Accords! I can almost save up for a new one before this one dies!!
Any feedback appreciated.

See Also: Make Your Car Last 200,000 Miles
Go Green by Driving It Til the Wheels Fall Off


  • patpat Member Posts: 10,421
    Hey, that's great! Meanwhile you might be interested in this topic: 500,000 Mile Accord. Welcome!
  • kenlwkenlw Member Posts: 190
    congrats. Good maintenance is key and you appear to understand that already.
  • raykramarraykramar Member Posts: 8
    There is no reason that you should not be able to easily get into the upper 200's before having any serious issues. Even those are generally fixable - transmission, etc. Depending on your level of commitment there is no reason that you cannot reach the 400's.

    My 2001 Civic has 135k on and runs like new - I am in the same boat as you - wanting to see how long it will run. I know several others with Honda's that run well with mileage in the 200-350k range. Its amazing what taking care of a car can do.
  • raykramarraykramar Member Posts: 8
    One thing I forgot. You may want to consider switching over to a fully synthetic oil. It has virtually stopped the aging on my engine. However if you do make the switch over you can never switch back.
  • kiawahkiawah Member Posts: 3,666
    Why can't you switch back?
  • raykramarraykramar Member Posts: 8
    My mechanic told me that it will cause leaks. He's a master tech for Honda and is very straight up. Although I've heard both that it is fine I don't care to test it.
  • redpathmanredpathman Member Posts: 3
    Well I'm keeping this thing. As I drive around, I've begun to take note of pre-1995 Civics and Accords. They're everywhere.

    Took mine in for an oil change the other day and had this same conversation with one of the service advisors at the dealer. Told him those 2007s looked pretty good. He said, yes they do, but mine is better. Better overall car than the newer ones. In fact he claims that the 1996-2000 batch of Civics were particularly good. I still love driving it; and my ego can take it. It still looks great too.
  • richcup1989richcup1989 Member Posts: 5
    I also have a 1998 Honda Civic, the LX model, other than the routine tires, exhaust,oil change every 3k and the routine water pump/timing belt change every 80K, I've done nothing to this vehicle and it runs like new, looks like new (no rust) just as you described. I have 200,000 on it right now and am torn about about getting a new one or waiting. Truth is, since the tune up at 175k, and the K&N air filter, I've been getting 40mpg average, way more than the new ones I've seen are getting.
  • richcup1989richcup1989 Member Posts: 5
    I just switched over to synthetic at 175k also. currently at 200k, runs great, also help improve mileage along with the K&N air filter and the tune-up!
  • kenlwkenlw Member Posts: 190
    switching to synthetic after so many miles is usually not recommended. Besides, after 175k, what more could synthetic help? your air filter and synthetic probably have very little to do with improved mileage, I would place all the credit with the tuneup.

    If your car is running fine, there's absolutely no rational reason to get a new one. A monthly car payment can buy a lot of maintenance!
  • patpat Member Posts: 10,421
    If your car is running fine, there's absolutely no rational reason to get a new one.

    Shhh... at least eighty per cent of the Forums' members will be devastated to hear that. :cry:

  • redpathmanredpathman Member Posts: 3
    And I suppose you're talking MILES? I'm in Canada and I just turned 204,000 Kilometres, about 127,000 miles. So mine is nearly new!

    I'm getting this bad habit of peering into older Civics and Accords in parking lots, curious as to the mileage. Someday, I'm going to get punched out.
    I regularly see 350,000 KMs plus - about 218,000 miles. Some pretty rough bodies, mind you on some of them. Imagine how long it will go if you take care them. I rust proof mine annually and baby it.
  • vinny13vinny13 Member Posts: 1
    I also own a 1998 Honda Civic EX. It's got 209,000 miles. I looooove this car. Changed the battery at about 110000 miles. The Ignition coil went south at 125000 miles. I changed the spark plugs, wires , cap and rotor at 175000 miles. I change the oil, with Mobile 1 fully synthetic oil every 7000 miles(ok a few times 10000 miles). It's making a few funny noises now and then, but I love her anyway.
  • drmbbdrmbb Member Posts: 80
    Seen on Craig's List -

    The guy has replaced normal wear items (timing belt, water pump, clutch, so forth), but claims that's it.
  • punkr77punkr77 Member Posts: 183
    I had a 95 Civic EX coupe. It made it past 140k with the original AC and clutch. The only things that broke on their own:

    The cupholder (replaced with one from a junkyard ($30)

    The screw holding the inside passenger doorpull broke loose (fixed with a 50 cent screw and washer)

    The only real repairs came from an attempeted car theft. Someone decided they deserved it more than me, and jimmied out the drivers side outside doorhandle. Did some damage to the body panel.

    My mothers 96 accord had very few problems as well. An A/C problem. Also, someone tried to steal it as well. They popped the door handle off, got in the car, and butchered the ignition. They were probably about 5 seconds from having it before they apperently got scared off.
  • tyriptyrip Member Posts: 13
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    Please don't write in all CAPS, it is considered yelling and is very annoying.

    Unless you plan to extend your oil change interval (OCI) to 10,000 miles or more, switching to synthetic oil will be a waste of money.

    If you opt to not extend your OCI, buy a good quality conventional oil such as Havoline.

    Lucas oil stabilizer is a waste of money.

    Lucas fuel treatement is a waste of money.

    Really long drives won't bother the car at all.

    Best Regards,
  • tyriptyrip Member Posts: 13
    are their any other brands of oil that are equal to havoline,and what brand oil and air filter,and why do you dislike LUCAS PRODUCTS.....thank more thing how often would you change the oil.....
  • shiposhipo Member Posts: 9,148
    Based upon Used Oil Analysis (UOA) reports that are published on the web site, Havoline pretty much stands alone as the best non-Synthetic oil currently on the market. If you want to go the Synthetic route, Mobil 1 0W-30 or German made Castrol Syntec 0W-30 is a good place to start.

    As for air and oil filters, just go with quality products from say Pure (Purolator), Napa, Wix, Bosch and even (dare I say it?) OEM Honda filters.

    Regarding the Lucas products, they're basically snake-oil, on the market to suck in folks who don't know any better. Don't believe me? That's fine, would you believe Honda? Great, open your Owner's Manual and read it. The bet is that Honda explicitly recommends that you use NO oil or fuel additives. The fact is that modern oil and gasoline are formulated in such a way as to not require any additives. Hey, for all you know the Lucas stuff is reacting with some of the oil and/or fuel ingredients and taking a bad situation and making it worse.

    Regarding changing the oil... Here again, what does your Owner's Manual say? Honda knows a whole lot better than I do about the care and feeding of your engine. If your Owner's Manual says "Change your oil every 6,000 miles", and you decide to use Havoline (or any other non-synthetic for that matter), go with what Honda recommends. If you decide to use a good quality Group IV synthetic oil, bump the factory recommendation by at least 50%.

    Best Regards,
  • pladoplado Member Posts: 1
    I bought a Civic 1.6 VTEC in January 2001 and I think it was assembled in the UK at Swindon. Most of its life it has been a Motorway journey car, never caned. Regular Services at the correct intervals. It used to manage 400 miles on one tank of petrol (11gals) which translated to over 42 mpg.
    However the engine now though feeling still like new is only managing 25 mpg at best.
    It does have AC on some of the time and nowadays it gets a lot of shorter journeys. So 25mpg is the currenet Urban level.
    There's very little oil consumption and I'm wondering why it doesn't still do in the 30mpg zone?

    The wear in the engine in the Civic 1.6 is astonishingly good considering that it's nearly done 200,000 miles. Back in the old days a British engine couldn't get much past 60,000 without needing a decoke or the valves grinding in. Most company cars were totally driven into the ground by 100,000 miles but this Civic has a literally stunning life-span.

    Do you think it needs tuning or does the fuel injection system start to get thirsty when they get fairly old?
    I'd be glad of advice so that I don't waste money trying to get dealers to improve it when it isn't possible.
  • 94hondacivic94hondacivic Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1994 Honda Civic LX 4dr sedan. It has over 228,000 miles on it.

    But I have to tell you. Over the life of the car I was religious about following the maintenance schedule recommended by Honda. And I had oil changes done 3-4 times a year.

    The engine is still good. The body is good. There is very little rust. And I was not good about washing the car.

    About 4 years ago she started burning oil. So, I have to put a quart of oil every 400-500 miles.

    I am hoping to get another year out of her.

    Enjoy your Civic!
  • hondaddicthondaddict Member Posts: 3
    My Civic has about 150,000 highway miles. Have it serviced at the dealer according to maintenance schedule. A couple days ago my A/C seemed to die. I tried to check the coolant level. Followed the manual instructions but found it impossible to see the max and min lines on the reservoir. Do I need to get under the car? Wanted to fill it myself if it was low, but I can't tell. Thanks. :P
  • hondaddicthondaddict Member Posts: 3
    Shame you didn't get the oil problem fixed cause you would be good to keep the car going indefinitely. I have a 97 Civic with 87,000 miles on it and plan to keep forever. Also have a 02 besides regular maintenance, tires, brakes replaced once and a battery replacing both sets of struts this year was the first major repair. Car looks like and runs like new. Why would anyone buy anything else?
  • awn7eawn7e Member Posts: 12
    I am delighted to read about fellow Civic owners who, like me, 1) love their cars 2) have put tons of miles on it 3) plan to keep it forever.

    Min4e is a 99 LX four door auto with 201,500 miles. I have done nothing except the regular oil changes and replacement of parts as they fail (timing belt, water pump, rotor, catalytic converter, oxygen sensor, manifold, alternator, mid-pipe).

    One major problem I have with this car is that it burns oil. A lot of times when I check the dipstick, it's either completely dry or below minimum. I have had this problem since almost day one. I am not sure what can be done about it.

    Any ideas?
  • the_one_fivethe_one_five Member Posts: 2
    Summary: Based on my experience and observations there should be no issues for at least 50k and with proper maintanence until 200k (or till car is 15). Then you will want to inventory the condition and possible corrosion issues. If you live in a cold climate washing the salt off the under body of the car during the winter is a good investment of time and money.

    Caveat: Obviously certain "unorthodox" driving styles can lead a dramatic decline in longevity. For reasons best understood by the practitioners some people shift automatic transmissions manually. More realistically superharsh gridlock commutes and saline drenched roads like the Chicago area can also be problematic.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------- -----

    I had a 1993 Civic. I got it when I was 16 (it was new) and replaced it at 203k miles with a new Civic DX-VP this May. It absorbed a huge amount amount of punishment: I consistently drove it at terminal velocity when I first got my license and live in the pothole covered salt slicks of Chicago. Though being averse to bicycles and public transportation I never stirred the gearbox.

    The corrosion and a number of routine maintenance issues that were coming due on my 93 prompted the change to the new car. The 93 needed its tune-up and the 2nd timing belt/waterpump was overdue, its dilapidated radiator was a decade old, the brakes were kaput and the tires were bald. All important issues whose interval had arrived. The combined expense of these items was not a viable investment.

    Another incentive for change was my new Civic DX-VP at 14.2 cost only 2500 more than the original one did in 1993 (the 93 lacked the VP's A/C, hubcaps, power windows, passenger side mirror).

    I don't know if each generation of Civic's fares better against the onset of longterm corrosion but I suspect there is good chance that exposed to the same conditions your car might fare slightly better than my 5th generation did- the trend seems to be upward in that realm. But we won't know for 5 years.

    Unfortunately this corrosion is a threat and is time contingent as well and miles contingent. Flying in the face of some conventional and outmoded wisdom it will effect the suspension components and underbody of an Volvo, S-Class Mercedes or Jeep just as much as a subcompact. In fact, it is a less expensive problem for the cheaper to repair subcompact. I did have to replace a tie-rod at 193k miles. The gauntlet of potholes, bumps, salt and snow were the culprits. Move to a sunny climate with reasonable roads and this wouldn't have occurred unless I made a habit of plowing into curbs.

    I don't know if other snowy climates use the salt levels that Chicago does, or if the roads look like they have been hit with JDAM GDU anti-runway munitions. Those issues are outside of your control to some extent. The reason I harp on this issue is that corrosion can be an expensive nemesis for any high mileage vehicle.

    Complete the routine maintenance and that car should give no problems till 175k or so- though after that you will probably be looking at all the interval related expenses. This can vary depending on sequences. For example: the timing belt/waterpump is recommended to be replaced at 90k so the second one would be at 180-200 depending on when you changed the first one. With this and other engine related issues taken care of the car should continue to run fine.

    But I cannot reiterate enough- if you live in area with unconscionable roads and winter like Chicago in 5 years or so you will want to take a look at whats going on with corrosion type issues effecting the tie-rods and such (I had to replace 1 at 193k).
  • briiilewisssbriiilewisss Member Posts: 1
    Well I am in desperate need for a car, used. I drive to the city a lot, which is about thirty minutes away. This 2007 honda civic (rebuilt title) has 95k, how long do they last, i love hondas, but i need a realistic mileage. Ive heard good and bad!
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,114
    The fact that it has a rebuilt title means that no one can give you any realistic expectations. It all depends on how well it was rebuilt. I would never buy a rebuilt vehicle without having it thoroughly inspected by an independent mechanic.


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  • truth91truth91 Member Posts: 1
    there is a product called "restore" they have 4-8 cyl canisters, this is an oil additive which you add at an oil change, it re-seals the piston walls, if the oil still burns it's a different and possibly bigger problem.
  • nike818nike818 Member Posts: 1
    hey i am currently a high school student i want to buy a honda civic ex coupe year 2000 and it has over 175,000 miles and they want 2,995. If anyone can help me decide to either get this car or walk away would help me and my wallet.
  • pcollenpcollen Member Posts: 2
    I have a 2001 Civic EX with 338,000 miles on it, mostly highway/interstate driven 110 miles each work-day. I just replaced the OEM alternator casue it was making a rattling seemed to be functioning perfectly. I just put in my third set of platinum spark plugs. Aside from routine maintenance like air filters, oil change, brake pads, and a timing belt change at 185K miles, nothing else has been done to the car...nothing. It gets 40 mpg on the highway, and I expect to get another 100-150K out of it.
  • pcollenpcollen Member Posts: 2
    You need to have it checked out bey a good mechanic/shop. You can't understand yourself if there are any unseen problems. Ask for maintenance records, such as timing belt change, brake work, transmission work, etc, or if they have a mechanic/shop that has been doing the work and inquire by VIN for records. I'd offer $2500 on condition that everything checks out OK: electrical, mechanical, A/C, heater, etc. You pay for the checkout. Timing belt replacement will run $500+ if needed, so you don't want to need that right away.
  • danwat1234danwat1234 Member Posts: 27

    My car has 236,500 miles on it, a 1999 Civic DX automatic. Completely reliable. I've had both 02 sensors replaced, valve cover, oil pan gaskets replaced. Preventative replacement of thermostat. Some piston chatter when the engine is cold but is quieted down quite a bit by switching from 5w30 to 10w30 (Chevron Supreme dino oil).
    I do a drain/fill (~3 quarts) of the transmission every 20K for preventative maintenance with Honda DW1, engine every 5K, brakes every 20K, coolant every 40K. About 30MPG combined in the winter, 33MPG combined in the summer. I have an upper grille block for MPG.
    I recommend an HID kit because the stock headlights are sucky so I put in a 55W 5000K (white color) HID kit with a lifetime warranty. Goes through a bulb about every 18 months.

    Am thinking about a nice used red Chevy Volt when they get cheap. With how long my car will last I can probably wait as long as I need to.

  • bmccue1964bmccue1964 Member Posts: 1

    2001 Honda Civix LX - 5 speed standard - 291,000 miles. Replaced clutch at 200,000, rear brakes around 250,000. Still has original exhasut system. Other than a little rust by the rear passenger size wheel opening (thanks to an accident in my driveway when my wife backed our Odyssey into it), it is just fine. I have a goal of hitting 300,000 by the end of 2014. Possibly even going beyond that!

  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,114
    edited July 2014

    @bmccue1964 said:

    I have a goal of hitting 300,000 by the end of 2014. Possibly even going beyond that!

    At this point, you might as well just drive it until it won't drive anymore, just to see how many miles it will go. I mean, barring a major/expensive issue, that is.

    We had a Tercel that did over 300k, and it had the courtesy to die peacefully in the driveway.


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  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonMember Posts: 20,350

    We had a Civic traded in once with 459,000 miles. It had dents in every panel and it barely ran but it made it to our store!

  • C2001RC2001R Member Posts: 1
    I have a 1994 s10 with 85000 miles on it but reverse is starting to go and my buddy offered to trade a 1998 honda civic hx coupe 1.6l vtec with 225k i love Hondas is it worth it tho?
  • Shm0oDoGGShm0oDoGG FloridaMember Posts: 6
    Just recently, a civic was discovered buried in a cave on an offshoot of a no longer flowing branch of the colorado river in the Grand Canyon.

    Given the back seat contents, which contained multiple papyri , several necklaces , and both a 3 foot obelisk and a reproduction of Hathor, it's estimated that it had been here since at least 7896 B.C .... before the Common Era.

    Using simple math, with proper maintenance, your civic potentially ( provided you Scotchgard and used REAL WAX not just soap) could last 37 millenia.

    Good luck with your purchase.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 187,525
    lol 😋

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  • OsborneOsborne GhanaMember Posts: 1
    Honda Civic 2001 ex manual is the strongest and most reliable especially for long journeys. Aside a few repairs with the power windows and locks,a/c condenser and starter replacement, the car's in perfect condition at 240k +. I love this car.
  • JMillertimeJMillertime Member Posts: 6
    If you keep up with maintenance there's no reason you shouldn't get 200K or even considerably more. The question becomes when it's worth it to move on because of the cost. If you can avoid anything major, you might well cruise for a long time before you'll need to replace it.
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