Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Importance of Taking Your Volvo In for Its 100,000 Service

Volvo cars have always stood for outstanding durability and an advanced commitment to safety. Even today, it is not uncommon to see decades-old Volvo cars still on the roads with hundreds of thousands--or even 2.6 million--miles on the odometer.

So you've clocked 100,000 miles in your Volvo, and you'd like to keep driving it a while longer. If you've kept up regular maintenance, chances are it will still serve you well for many miles to come.

Now is the perfect time to have your Volvo checked out by a dealership or licensed service station, as plenty of vital car parts can begin to wear out at around 100,000 miles. Catching these often small, easy fixes before they turn into catastrophic problems is the key to maintaining the financial advantage that comes with keeping an older car.

100,000-Mile Volvo Inspection and Service: What Comes With It?

If your Volvo is just hitting 100,000 miles, chances are good it was made early or in the middle of the 2000s. Many Volvo cars of this era came with 5-cylinder engines known for durability but prone to catastrophic damage from timing belt failure and other maintenance issues.

A complete 100,000 mile service should include timing belt and water pump replacement, a complete brake overhaul, a full tune-up, the changing of fluids and any number of other small but important maintenance items. Make sure your mechanic checks turbocharger components if your car is equipped with one. This oft-overlooked maintenance item can be an issue with older-model Volvos.

The complete service may cost you a couple thousand dollars now, but will save you thousands more by preventing future repair expenses. It's also a whole lot cheaper than buying a brand-new Volvo.

100,000-Mile Service and Volvo Safety

For more than 50 years, Volvo has led the industry in researching and developing first-to-market new safety technologies that quickly see adoption by the rest of the industry. Did you know that some of your Volvo's safety features (besides just the brakes) need periodic checking and maintenance as well?

Airbags must be inspected, and sometimes replaced, at 100,000 miles because a malfunctioning or punctured airbag can be worse than none at all. Burns can result when the airbag's charge goes off improperly, negating its effects and causing even more problems.

Other Volvo safety systems like anti-lock brakes and some of the market's earliest stability control systems should be checked for proper function. A well-maintained Volvo, with good tires and brakes, proper-functioning windshield wipers and maintenance items taken care of is the best bet in the industry to keep you and your family safe on the road.

The 100,000-Mile Myth

Common wisdom used to state that cars just plain old wore out at around 100,000 miles. For many brands, especially American cars and some of the more exotic European brands, this was very much the case. Volvos do not fall into that category.

From the 1960s to today, these well-built Swedish machines with their devoted following are built to last. Any Volvo built after 1985 can easily clock 200,000 miles with simple preventative maintenance and occasional repairs.

Still, as is the case with all European brands, Volvos can get quite pricey to fix when things do go wrong. Comprehensive repairs that may cost a few hundred dollars on a competing model can easily stretch into the thousands. A higher-mileage Volvo is still a great car and a great investment, but don't neglect the service!

About the Author: Jen Peters is an author and published car blogger, with a thing for Swedish engineering - hey, if you're in need of a taxi in the Seattle-area, check out: http://www.stitataxi.com/

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