Road Trip

I have an 04 ford explorer and am planning on taking it on a trip from new york to illinois. the trip is roughly 1000 miles each way. Im planning on making the trip there and back in about three days. My car has about 170000 miles on it. Is this trip doable or is 2000 miles a lot to put on such an old car in a short amount of time?
Im thinking that with an oil change before I leave and after I get back I should be good to go.


As long as the vehicle is in good shape, a 2000 miles trip should not be a problem. However if it’ll help you sleep better you could always rent a car.

It could be easier on the car then doing 2000 over several weeks. As long as you car has been running well, maintenance is current and you aren’t straining the vehicle with too heavy loads or excessive speeds, you should expect it to run normally. Do the usual pre trip check list, of tires and fluid levels. If the car is due for an oil change before your trip is done, by all means, doing it before would be a good idea.

Miles don’t hurt a car. My son last summer took his 2004 Mazda 3 on a tour of the Western USA, starting in Montana, through Washington, Idaho, Oregon, Calfornia, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, then back North. The car had 140,000 miles on it at that time and ran flawlessly. He uses 0W30 synthetic oil which caused no oil consumption going through the desert in July.

As others say, check the car out beforehand, and make sure the A/C is up to scratch.

Happy motoring!

I’m more worried about you. 2,000 in 3 days is a lot. Doable, but leaves about 0 time for stopping at your destination.

@texases Agree; although I have driven that much in 3 days, I agree it is tiring. Suggest taking it easy and take a day off at the destination.

The longest continuous trip I have taken was from Buffalo to Seattle, with 2 overnight stops.

@docnick @texases

Ill be driving with three other people for a graduation ceremony so between the four of us i figured it should be okay driving, thank you both though!

@ginger134 Thanks for the clarification. You should be Ok, except have 2 drivers in good shape AFTER the ceremony! The worst non-stop trip I made was in a 4 year old VW Beetle in Spain from Madrid, North to France and finally crashed in Biarritz on the Atlantic Coast. Roads in Spain varied from adequate to awful, and the bug had no A/C. The road was 2 lane all the way at that time.

A lot of miles in a few days is actually very easy on a car. If you are due for an oil change, get it. But an oil change before and another change after a 2000 mile trip is overkill. If your car is maintained properly it should be good for a 2000 round trip at anytime. If you’ve been neglecting maintenance, then you might need to have the car serviced to be sure it is up for the trip.

Actually I’m taking a similar graduation trip mid May (Scranton PA to Tampa FL) in an '01 Toyota Sequoia with about 140K miles. The car is good for the trip, but I have a tire slowly losing air that I need to get fixed before the trip.

@docnick thanks for the advice! ill make sure we’re well rested! going to be a long few days!

@UncleTurbo good to know about the oil changing. the car is in great shape- never been in an accident, just got new tires a few months ago and the breaks were fixed about a month ago. I may take it in just incase to get it looked through but it sounds like ill be okay.

Thanks again, really appreciate it!

Never do maintenance just before a trip, if you can’t get it done at least a week in advance, it would be safer to just skip it as long as you have been keeping up you maintenance. Be sure to check the tire pressure just before you go though.

I can do 800 miles in one day but it is a grueling, boring time of it. 500 would be better on you.

Tow insurance, a prepaid legal membership, no nails in tire/spare tire and its equipment/know how to use said equipment.

So what is the next car that you want if you do breakdown?