Steps to Consider Before Buying a Used Car: Brand new cars might be nice to own but in most cases they aren’t worth the price. A properly chosen used car is a lot less expensive but can equally do its job.
Would you like to buy a second-hand vehicle but aren’t sure how to make the best decision and avoid the risk of getting fooled into buying something that has little value for money? All you need to do is properly check a few key aspects before making a purchase. The tips below will tell you what to pay special attention to.
Are you buying a legal or a stolen car? Has this vehicle been involved in any severe accident before? Instead of asking such questions to yourself or the previous owner of the car, run a simple background check.
Search the used car’s VIN number to know its past details. Don’t buy it if you see that it’s been involved in any serious incident. Also make sure the car has passed a vehicle safety test, and that its registration documents are in order.
While you are delving into the car’s history, don’t feel ashamed to demand servicing and maintenance documents as well. It is well within your rights to know when the car last visited a servicing shop.
Having a good idea about the car’s condition and past usage will help you assess how many years it can run smoothly or when you might need to change its parts. If the car has been low on maintenance, it may be a solid ground for you to negotiate its price.
Don’t be impressed by a used car before examining the engine. Remember that the condition of the engine matters as much as and the fluids which keep the car running. Any leakage or lesser levels than required may be a sign of the crucial parts damage.
The good news is that you don’t need a mechanic to measure the fluids. For checking engine oil simply remove the dipstick, clean and insert it for a best reading. Knowing when the car is due for an oil change will also give you an idea of what expenses you should expect. The level of coolant and brake fluids are worth checking, too.
When it comes to the external car condition, tyres are the absolute must. Above all, you should check the tread wear. Keep in mind that the tread depth requirements can vary depending on the roads.
If you see or feel that the tyres are worn out too much or in an uneven way, investigate further – ask what kind of road the previous owner typically drove on and how much importance they gave to servicing. Also consider the conditions where you’ll be driving the car.
If your used car is not fuel efficient, it can turn out to be a stressful investment.
First, do some research online and check what models have low mileage. Remember, though, that apart from the mileage itself, it is also a matter of how well a car has been maintained. In some cases, high fuel efficiency may be more deteriorated if the car owner didn’t pay enough attention to its maintenance.
Once you buy the car, be aware that its fuel efficiency depends on you. So have your tyre pressure checked frequently enough, get the wheel alignment right, and regularly monitor the fluid levels.
When you’re satisfied with the condition and features of a used car you’re planning to buy, take it for a test drive and check how you feel. In case anything is wrong, you’ll be able to notice any weird noises or problems in combustion, gear, ignition, or suspension. Also check if you feel it right under your feet – after all, you’ll be driving it so it’s for the sake of your comfort.
Although there are quite a few risks related to buying a used car, it’s a question of knowing how to perform the right check. Remember to always take these aspects into consideration before finalizing the deal – even going through them twice is well worth it considering the price you’re about to pay.
Artice Writer: Giles kirkland ( Car expert and freelance writer)
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