What you need to check before you purchase your used car
Buying one of the many used cars for sale is often a great idea. You can get more for your money, making your cash go further so that you can buy a better model, or you can save on the car you’ve had your eye on for a long time – which your bank balance will no doubt be grateful for!
But, of course, you do have to take a few precautions to make sure you get exactly what you’re expecting. To help you out, here’s a guide on everything you need to look for when buying a used car.
Check the Points of Entry
To get a better idea of the legitimacy of the sale, take a look at the points of entry. First of all, go around the car to see if all the locks are the same; if they’re not, it may be that one of them has been changed, which is a sign of a stolen car. Next, take a look at the windows and sunroof, making sure they all open and close properly and don’t have any signs of forced entry.
If the car you’re looking to buy has done a fair few miles, it’s probably going to be in worse shape than one that’s done considerably less – not always, but usually! However, if the mileage seems too low for the age of the car, be cautious of ‘clocking’. This is when someone’s altered the mileage of the car to make it look more appealing, and that doesn’t exactly make the sale trustworthy.
Take it Out on the Road
Taking the used car for sale out for a spin is a great way to check its condition. You can try out everything from the air conditioning to the condition of the brakes, as well as listening out for any strange noises or smells. Once you’ve driven it, check that the bonnet isn’t overheating and open it up to take a look at the components inside. If anything is letting off smoke, steer well clear of the sale.
The Overall Condition
The physical condition of a car can give you a good idea as to how it’s been looked after over the years. Check the car on a sunny, clear day so that you can see any scratches or inconsistencies in the paint-work. Take a look at the drainage points to make sure they’re not blocked and head inside to check out the interior. If it’s dirty, ripped and generally looks like it hasn’t been well looked after, be more cautious of the sale.
Bring an Expert
If you’re unsure of all things car-related, it’s a good idea to bring an expert to check out any used cars for sale. This could just be a friend who knows more than you, or you could try and hire a mechanic to come with you. They can properly take a look at all the ins and outs of the car, giving you the confidence to buy it – or to not buy it, depending on the verdict.
When buying a used car, it’s likely that everything’s going to be perfectly fine, though it’s always a good idea to check just in case. Take those few extra precautions and you can drive away with peace of mind knowing you’re getting a good sale.