Skip to Content

Does A New Engine Reset The Mileage On A Vehicle?

Disclosure: We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

A car's mileage tells you the distance traveled throughout the years of use. When the time to replace the engine, typically the mileage on your odometer would already be hundreds and thousands of miles. It might get you thinking that if you replace your engine, will your mileage be reset? In this article, we have researched for you and found the answers that you are looking for.

No, replacing your engine does not reset your car's mileage. The odometer is not connected to the engine; it is connected to the front wheel hub. Any changes made to the engine, even as far as replacing it, will not affect the odometer reading. Your car's mileage will only be reset by tampering with the odometer.

Continue reading the article as we discuss more details about the topic. Learn things such as whether it is legal to reset your car's mileage and more. We will also be giving you information on when you should replace your car's engine, so stick around to find out.

The powerful engine of the modern car. Does A New Engine Reset The Mileage On A Vehicle

Does a new engine mean new mileage?

Replacing your car's old engine with a new one will not affect your car's mileage. As we mentioned above, your odometer has no connection to your engine, so if the engine breaks down your odometer will not, and vice versa. 

Instruments such as your odometer and other gauges give you readings about other parts of the vehicle. For instance, you get your speed reading in the dashboard through your speedometer which is connected to your wheels. This is where it reads the speed you are on. Here is an article we previously wrote about the gauges in a car.

On the other hand, you get your fuel gauge reading through resistors giving various sensor indications that sends a signal to your dashboard and display the amount of fuel you have.

Not everything in your car is connected to your engine, yes it may be the heart of the vehicle where the power and torque come from but everything is not connected to it. 

Can you reset your car's mileage [is it legal]?

If you are asking can you reset your odometer, the answer is yes, you can. However, resetting your car's mileage is illegal in the United States. There is a Federal statute mandating this practice as illegal and should not be practiced by anyone unless you want to commit a crime.

49 U.S. Code § 32703, section two, clearly states that disconnecting, resetting, altering an odometer intending to change the mileage registered is completely illegal. But in some particular instances, resetting an odometer would be necessary if there is a malfunction in its mechanism.

According to the 49 U.S. Code § 32704, You can repair or replace an odometer of a vehicle if the mileage registered by the odometer remains the same before the repair or replacement. Resetting can only be done if the repair cannot fix the malfunction. You would have to reset the odometer to zero, accompanied by a sticker on the left door stating that you had to reset the odometer.

So unless special circumstances, avoid as much as possible resetting your odometer because it is illegal. If you are trying to sell your car, resetting your car's mileage can cause a big problem with the person with whom you transact. By lying, you are falsifying documents resulting in tampering with the legal papers of the car and you can be sued for it. 

Additionally, falsifying the odometer reading for a sales transaction misrepresents the vehicle's true mileage. Therefore, it is illegal and could pose a safety risk to the new owner if the car's current condition is not accurately reported.

Instead of resetting your odometer after replacing your engine, read about what to do after replacing your car engine, instead. Here we will be giving you proper, safe, and most of all legal advice on what should your next steps be after swapping out your old engine. 

When should I replace the engine of my car?

The average life of an engine is 150,00 miles. However, your engine's lifespan depends on the type/brand of the engine, vehicle model, regular engine maintenance, and whether the engine has had any damage. 

The first thing you should do is have a reliable and trusted mechanic check your engine and make an evaluation. Usually, if some parts of the engine just need repairing, like a loose belt or hoses that need replacement, you will not need to replace the entire engine.

But when parts of an engine have suffered severe damage, such as blowing out or an accident, it can warrant total replacement.

Removing the engine from the car, using engine crane

Cost of Engine Replacement

Having your engine replaced is not a cheap repair as it may cost you anywhere from $3,000 to $8,000 depending on the type of engine that you need.

If you are looking for a newer engine, the replacement prices can shoot up to as much as $20,000. So having someone that will give you an honest assessment is imperative because the cash involved is no joke.

V8 Car Engine Repair using torque wrench

Engine Maintenance - To Make It Last

You can do things to make your engine last and maybe even break the average of 150,000 miles. Choosing the right car brand and model can help you reach more miles than expected. Some cars have the reputation of not being reliable. If you want your vehicle to last with you, pick one that has good reviews and has been tested by consumers.

But a reputable car brand and long-lasting engine don't mean a thing if you will ignore the preventive maintenance needed for your car. Maintaining oil and fluid levels will help your engine last longer and keep a smooth drive even while piling up the miles in your vehicle. As the old saying goes, take care of your car, it'll take care of you.

Another tip in making your engine last is not abusing it. Avoid doing burn-outs and revving until you red-line because these practices are not safe for your vehicle and are quite annoying for other motorists on the road, so be a responsible car owner and driver.

Close up detail of new car engine

Does a new engine add value to my car?

Having a new engine on your old car can increase its value compared to the same car with an original engine, especially if you opt to replace it with a more powerful one. But this still all depends on the overall condition of the car. You would also have to take into consideration other parts if they are still in good condition.

Additional things to consider that may affect the value of the car are things like, was the work done well in replacing it, and doubts from the buyer on why the engine had to be replaced. It is important to discuss with potential buyers why the engine had to be replaced and be upfront if there are other issues that the car has.

Another thing to consider here is the age of the car, newer cars that are still under warranty but with already a new engine might cause skepticism from the buyers because it is still relatively new. So a thorough discussion of the car's history is needed.

If you are planning to sell your car in the future, take care of it while it is still new and be up to date with its preventive maintenance schedules. We have written an article about good mileage for a used car called, "What’s A Good Mileage For A Used Car? [12K Miles Rule Explained]," to help guide you if you are planning to sell your car or buy a used car yourself.

clean and shiny car engine close up on the front side. Does A New Engine Reset The Mileage On A Vehicle

In summary

A new engine will not reset your car's mileage because those two systems are not connected. It is also illegal to just adjust your car's odometer without any valid reason. You must follow the regulation set by the law to avoid any problems in the future, remember it is there for the safety of all of us.