Q & A Guides

How Many Miles Can A 50cc Scooter Last? I Have The Answer

Plus tips on how to extend a scooters life

We all love the lifestyle a budget-friendly 50cc scooter gives us, and we never want that fun to end. So let’s explore how many miles you can expect them to last.

On average, you should expect a 50cc scooter to last anywhere from 20,000 to 30,000 miles. This of course assumes you follow some important principals. I’ve included some tips and maintenance guidelines below that will give you the best chance of keeping your scooter the road as long as possible. Because like most things with motors and moving parts, there’s a lot that could go wrong.

Extend Your Scooters Life With These Tips

Get cozy with a cup of coffee. We’re about to recommend you actually read the owners manual. While this may seem boring and unnecessary, there can be wealth of usable knowledge in there.

Familiarizing yourself with the parts list, for example, may give you the confidence to attempt some basic repairs yourself. Because smaller motored scooters tend to be simpler in mechanical design, they are often easier to work on. I find this extremely valuable as the typical cost (labor and parts) of bringing your scooter into a repair shop rarely warrants the value.

Instead pick up a basic mechanics tool kit, typically these are fairly inexpensive at around $25, and spend a Sunday afternoon fixing your scooter. You may find it more rewarding than you think. Also, because you’ve fimailized yourself with the manuel, using online resources to help you with fixes, like YouTube videos, will be a lot easier. How you ask? Often you’ll find a video explaining how to make the repair you need, but unfortunately the work being done is on a model different than yours. This can be very confusing. But having the manual in hand gives you a chance to “translate” the advice you’re getting, and successfully applying to your scooter.

Remember! Proper maintenance will give your scooter it’s best chance of exceeding the 30,0000 mile mark. Don’t simple dismiss its importance.

As you comb the manual take special note of what I like to call the “Big 8”. Basically these are the more important sections you’ll want to focus on.

  • Battery
  • Air filters
  • Tires
  • Transmission oil
  • Engine oil
  • Spark plugs
  • Brakes
  • Drive belt

Basic Mileage Maintenance Guidelines

200 mile checks / monthly:

  • Check engine oil level.
  • Tire pressure is at manufacturers recommendation (probably more often than every 200 miles, but it’s at least a good start).
  • Test the horn, turn signals headlights, and brake lights.
  • Tighten handlebars and mirrors

1000 mile checks / twice a year:

  • Lubricate throttle and brake cables.
  • Check your tires thread. Your looking at thread depth and signs of uneven or extreme wear. Note: If tire pressure in general is always low, this may be a sign you may need replacements. They’ll cost around $50.
  • Inspect belts for tension and excessive wear and tear.
  • Make sure your alignment is straight. If your scooter pulls either to the left or right, you’re probably out of alignment.

Carry These Items For Basic Repairs

Safety should be always the top of your list. Having a pre-ride checklist can go a long way in making sure you get where you’re going safely.

Another great benefit of using a checklist is making sure you have the supplies with you needed to make some basic en-route repairs. Odds are these repairs-in-a-pinch will require you to channel your inner MacGyver.

That said, here are a few thing I think MacGyver himself would most likely carry.

  • Duct tape
  • Rubber bands
  • Flashlight
  • Screwdriver
  • Patch kit
  • Mini pump
  • Zip Ties
  • Pen and pad
  • Small first aid kit

How you use these items is up to you. I guess more actually, it’s dependent on the situation you’re in. But trust me, these items can help you make temporary repairs which may end up saving you big money in the long run.

That’s quite the list. I bet you’re wondering how you’re going to store all those items, right? One of the best accessories I know of is a Top Tail Luggage Box (can go by may other names). It’s basically a small box that sits behind your backseat. Usually the dimension of these types of boxes are around 17 in. x 14 in. x 11 in. The only downside we found to a top box is it occupies the space directly behind the passenger, which can sometimes make things feel a little crapped. If you’re riding alone an alternative is using a bag hook which sits between your legs.

Keep in mind these storage add-on are optional. Matter of fact, some scooters may not even have the ability to use these products. The good news is most scooters, if not all, come with a built-in under seat storage, but the space is usually very limited.

Don’t Ride It Like A Rental

This may sound obvious, but the way you ride your scooter will be one of the biggest determinants on how long it lasts. The good news is because 50cc scooters don’t go very fast, 20-30 mph, the temptation to beat up on them is kept a bay. Still, we find some people treat their scooters more like bicycles than motorcycles.

Remember, they were built for the street, not off-road adventures or hopping curbs!

Lastly, use premium gas (unless instructed to do otherwise by the manual). The gas mileage on small motor scooters is incredible! Some manufacturers claim their models can get over a hundred miles per gallon. So don’t skimp.

Remember, the goal here is to make your scooter last, not save a few cents.

Proper Storage Could Lead Extra To Extra Miles

Let’s talk about the winter months, or for that matter any extended length of time your scooter is going to be in storage and not running. If the goal is be the proud the owner of a “High-mileage Warrior ”, the odometer reading is not the only important factor.

The two major problems with storing scooters for a long time are the battery going dead, and the fuel destabilizing.

Luckily both these problems are straightforward to solve.

For the battery part of the problem, all you have to do is simply remove it from the scooter and store it somewhere that’s not super cold and can be kept dry. For the fuel, adding a small amount of fuel stabilizer should do the trick. Products like STA-BIL 22206 Fuel Stabilizer comes to mind.

Wrap Up

There you have it. My tips on staying on the road as long as you can. I’d love to hear your thoughts and advice by sharing with others by leaving a comment below.

Ride safe!

Related Articles


  1. Thank you so much for your excellent information on how to care for my 49cc wolf brand scooter I’ve had it 3 years and as 2500 miles on it.

  2. I have a AMSOIL 3 wheel moped, I just got it up to 50,050 miles today, is that a bad thing like will I have to get a transmission replaced?

    1. I have a hard time ever calling a moped with 50,000+ miles on it a “bad thing”. Assuming you’ve haven’t any issues outside of routine maintenance, I’d count yourself lucky! As far as what problems could arise, like a new transmission, I only could make a guess. You’d have to bring it in to your local service shop to see if all is well.

  3. I’m reading this because I’ve just started to have problems with my 50cc – just isn’t starting very quickly.
    Googled the lifespan … 😂
    Never had mine serviced (just MOT) and it’s just hit 50,000!
    That’s crazy lucky 🍀
    (I will start doing theses steps)

  4. I have a 2005 Yamaha BWS. I have 44,000KMs (27,300miles) on mine, and it’s still going strong. This is my every day commuter and I ride regardless of the weather.

    As I was reading your maintenance list, it looks exactly like my regular routine, so, I guess I can testify that proper maintenance is the key to long life! Don’t get me wrong, I have done a lot of repairs and replacement of parts (brake pads, belts, filters, spark plug, tires), but I would call this “normal” wear and tear.

    Good luck and ride safe!

    1. Good point on the ““normal” wear and tear” part. While scheduled maintenance is important, it’s not the only cost of ownership.

  5. What a load of crap! Most Vespa in Italy easily pass the 50K mark without any problems. There are lots of vespa with even more than 100K.
    You must be very young…

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Cobo! Unfortunately my limited expertise leans toward new tech. However, the underlining point of this article is treat your scooter with a little TLC, and to following the manufactures recommendations. This of course applies to ‘classic’ scooters as well. Unrelated to maintenance, I have always dug the look of the older Honda’s.

  6. I got a 49/50cc Tao tao 19’ im not sure, i enjoy it! Problems with it, after some trips she tends to not start right up, like she needs to cool down. And she goes around 25 mph up a hill. 40/45 mph average. I need new brakes. Dont know how to do them!

  7. Hi Andrew, thank you for the great, straight forward information. I recently purchased a 2009 Honda Jazz with just over 3,300 kms. I absolutely love it and cannot think of my life without it now. I’m in Winnipeg so our riding season is only about 6 months, but I plan to ride until the first snow hits. The question I entered into the Google Search, which brought me to your site was: How would I know if my scooter has more than 10,000? For all I know it could’ve had 13,300 km when I purchased it.
    Thank you ☺️, Claudia

    1. I owned 2008 honda metropolitan chf50s, put over 20,000 miles on it. Still looked and ran good. The odometer only had 4 digit spaces. A honda will always have better plastics that are more resilient to oxidation and scuffs than cheap scooters. Not to mention the superior engine/cvt/quality. I would buy a 2008 honda metropolitan with 20,000 miles before I bought a 2021 taotoa.

  8. Hey Andrew,
    You posted so good information that will be helpful in keeping people’s scooters on the road if…. if they follow your advice. .. which I hope they do.
    I think you may have touched on the topic in another post, but the info. is also very relevant here in regard to new scooters: the importance of the break in period.
    Following manufacturs instructions and procedures will ensure the engine gets off to a healthy start.
    I’ve built a performance engines for people and told them to baby the engine for X amount of miles and to not exceed X rpms for X amount of miles at which oil should be changed and X inspected. I’d say about 50% of people want to see how fast or powerful the engine is… and full throttle out the door…. which is probably the best worst thing (Haha is there such thing) one can do…. especially with a new modded engine. Hi revs with fresh builds and tight clearances causes premature and rapid wear.
    Go easy and maintain a new bike and the bike will reward you in the long run with a longer life.
    Also, if the list of tools was a set number and size… Id swap the flashlight for an adjustable crescent wrench. Having a tool to tighten and loosen nuts and bolts is more useful than flashlight…besides unless you way old skool like my uncle , you probably have a cell phone that you can use as a flashlight. Uncle Marty still has an answering machine with a cassette tape! Haha
    Also good to have is a coat hanger or a wound up roll of bailing wire. Unlike zip ties, hangar wire is stronger and more importantly heat resistant so wire can be used in a pinch to temporarily reattach a muffler , fix a broke cable, damaged body piece… in the event of one of those times…. “of the worst possible time and place breakdowns.” Haha again.

    Happy trails… no wait… stay off trails… happy roads.

    1. Hello, Barry –

      Well put together thought! Thank you for sharing. I’m sure others will find this very helpful.

  9. Thanks for this info Andrew, I will be a first time rider in about 4 weeks after my 49cc scooter arrives and I get it registered.
    I have a question. I was planning to try and use to travel to work. which is about 22 miles. is this a feasable distance to go twice a day. not traveling on highways because of law restrictions. This would be in New York City as well. Any advice ?


    1. First-time rider! That’s awesome, congrats.

      That’s a pretty long commute. Not sure if I have any helpful advice for you, Rayj. Maybe someone else reading this can chime with some tips. In the meantime, enjoy your new scooter!.

  10. I’m here because someone is selling a 150cc scooter with 210,000 miles and although it’s shiny and looks almost new, I wanted to see what I could expect from it before it gives out. I bought another one a few months ago with over 62,000 miles and it works pretty smoothly. In fact, it’s hard to find scooters for sale here with less than 100,000 km. This article was about 50cc scooters though so I assume the 150cc’s last a lot longer. I’ll try to get him to start the 150cc scooter and see how it sounds and rides.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *