What to Look for When Buying a Used Car?
Finding a trouble-free used car is not about luck. It is a task that requires you to apply your research and investigative skills to determine whether the car you’re eyeing is worth buying. Determining how reliable a used vehicle is and spotting potential problems can save you from expensive repairs down the line after your purchase. Listed below are some suggestions of what to look for when you’re in the market for a used car.
Do Your Research
When you are looking for used cars, don’t be afraid to put your detective hat on and conduct some research on popular and reliable car models. Select a few models that meet your needs and dive deeper into the specific functions and features of these models. You can check Internet forums and car review websites to pinpoint the problem areas and weaknesses of your selected models and use this information to help you during an in-person inspection.
The car’s exterior bears the brunt of the force delivered by mother nature, so, overtime, you are bound to see some imperfections like color fading, scratches, and dents. You need to look closely at the body of the vehicle for any immediately noticeable imperfections. If the car has been in an accident in the past and the repair work is not done properly, you may notice some roughness along the joints of the panels. Often, big dents can be patched with a filler.
Run a magnet over the body panel and see if it sticks properly. Wherever there is filler from previous repairs, the magnet won’t stick to the body panel. Also, inspect the glass for cracks or dented areas. All this exterior inspection would help you gauge the condition of the car to some extent and make a rational, informed decision to go ahead with the purchase or leave the deal.
Test the Suspension
Make sure the car’s suspension is working properly. Put significant pressure on each corner of the car and see how it rebounds. If the shock absorbers are working properly, the car should rebound only once. If the car keeps moving up and down the shock absorbers are not working properly and might need to be replaced.
Always ask to take the vehicle for a test drive to find out more about suspension problems. Some of the symptoms of suspension failure that you should be aware of include: the car pulling to one side while driving, feeling every bump on the road, and the car being out of line with the direction of the steering wheel.
Even regular tires, in perfect working condition, can show signs of wear and tear across all tires. In simple words, the treads should be even. If the tread depth is uneven, it means that the driver has not aligned the tires and did not bother to rotate the tires. This is a clear sign of careless wheel maintenance.
Light and Lenses
Check the lights for any signs of damage like cracks. Also, ensure all lights including brake lights and taillights are working properly.
There are few things to be aware of while looking at the interior. Take note of the condition of the seats, dashboard, and pedals. Is anything broken? If the rubber on the pedals have been worn down, the car has probably been used a lot. Also check the instrumentation, controls, and sound system and make sure all are working properly.
Everybody out there wants to make money and you need to be careful when making a big purchase like a used car. The tips above provide a useful guide to help you avoid getting swindled into a lemon and to find a used car that makes you happy.