Would you buy a new car if it had to be greased every 1,000 miles?

Todays new cars remain mostly maintenance free for many miles. But cars of yesteryear needed all sorts of routine maintenance, and on a quite frequent intervals. Like all the grease nipples dosed every 1,000 miles. Even my 70’s Ford truck, Ford recommends its fuel filter be replaced every 4 months.

Of course there’s a price to pay for the convenience of infrequent servicing, included with the price of the new car. So what if the new price was lower, but it needed more frequent servicing? Would you buy a car if it was $10,000 less than comparable cars, but required greasing 6 grease-nipples every 1,000 miles?

A manufacturer would not build such a car today… it would fail from neglect before the 3 year warranty was out!

Also, sealed ball joints and tie rods are cheaper than ones with grease zerks.

So, moot point.


How do you explain that old cars that needed frequent servicing years ago usually lasted more than 3 years on the road? Do you mean that today’s owners wouldn’t buy one? If so, I’m not talking about today’s owners. I’m just asking about your own opinion. Is it worth $10,000 to you to have to grease 6 fittings every 1000 miles?

Cars of that era often didn’t have heaters either. You’d have to cover yourself w/a blanket in cold weather. But somehow people still used their cars daily, and enjoyed using them.

George , what is with all these nonsense questions ?


People expected and conformed to those maintenance requirements. People changed their oil every 3 months or 3,000 miles. People drained and refilled the coolant every 2 years. People checked the electrolyte level, and added distilled water to their battery every few months.

But no one expects these kind of maintenance requirements today. People would either refuse to buy the car, or they wouldn’t do the recommended maintenance, perhaps resulting in mechanical breakdowns. Heck, manufacturers have even eliminated distributors, ignition wires, and timing belts, because people don’t change them at the recommended interval, sometimes with disastrous results.

People fed their horses every day in 1800. Don’t think they’d buy a car that needed daily attention. Just like they wouldn’t buy a car today with 1930 maintenance requirements. Odd question, George.

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Because owners expected to do that maintenance. Today’s owners do not expect to do 1000 mile services. Heck, some can’t remember to do 7500 mile oil changes. Considering grease zerks were eliminated, oh, 40 years ago on many vehicles, i’d bet the Iffy Lube folks would not know what to do with them.

As for a 10K discount for 1000 mile maintenance… as I posted before, I don’t think that is possible… but I with rising labor rates, I’d say no.

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Why would you grease them every 1000 miles?? Every oil change and tire rotation I might push on the grease boot, if I can feel grease in there then it is good to go, but unless it is worn out, or over greased, the boot will retain the grease for a good long time…
If you over fill them then the grease will leak out…

EDIT: by the time I got in the game, I didn’t see anything older then 60’s vehicles on a regular basis…

From about 1957 on, I don’t recall any car being greased every 1000 miles. I do recall as part of an oil change the zerks were greased though.

What do you base this assumption on, that it would be less expensive the old way?
My opinion is that not only will it require more frequent servicing, but cost more in parts and labor than the current sealed bearing approach. Think about how many individual parts there are and how much labor is required for each approach…

There is nothing wrong with your question, George.

The only question that is nonsensical is the one that hasn’t been asked.

I like your hypothetical question. I’m just going to say I rather pay more to avoid having to use up more of my time than to pay less and having to use up most of my time servicing a car.

This is why I avoid Nissan vehicles, the cheap ones, such as their Sentras, Altimas and maximas. Rogue, too. And buy the more expensive alternatives Toyota Corollas, Camrys and etc.

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Nissan Maxima start at 38000 dollars . I don’t call that cheap .

What car from Toyota competes with the maxima? The Lexus ES? Then I’ll buy the ES over the Maxima.

Nope, a thousand times no.


Remember checking dwell angle/points every 3000 miles

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It’s time for you to buy a brand new car

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Saw a meme today, it said; People are like Distributors, some are advanced and some are, well, I will just leave it at that…
And some are like electronic ignitions, they have no points… :grin:


The Sentra and Corolla competed with each other
The Altima and Camry competed with each other
The Maxima and Avalon competed with each other

The last Avalon was 2022, the last Maxima was mid-2023, no idea if either will be back for 2025 or later, don’t care not looking it up… lol

Before ball joints became standard front suspension used wrist pins and king pins which had no rubber cups for grease.

1000 miles? Even when vehicles had zerks- Never seen one with such an idiotic requirement. Everyone I’ve ever owned or seen - 5,000 miles was the MINIMUM.

When the sealed units first came out, I wasn’t a fan. If my vehicle had zerks, I’d grease them every oil change (5k miles). My 1980 Pathfinder was the first vehicle I owned with sealed system. However - each of the sealed units had a little bolt you could remove and install a zerk (which I did) and then greased each zerk a oil changes. That was the last vehicle I saw a zerk on. And I thought I’d have problems with the new ones. But nope - Hundreds of thousands of miles and very few problems. I had to replace a total of 2 tie-rods in all our vehicles with a total of over 1 million miles. So in my experience - sealed systems work fine.

A couple of my large mowers I owned still have zerks.