How To Evaluate A Used Car
It’s a bit of a usual thing when more people would discourage you to buy a second- or third-hand car. Yes, used car buying is indeed a great way to save money, but because of the many risks involved, not there are just not too many fans of it. But it shouldn’t be such a bad idea. They are less expensive (because of depreciation) but they can still provide you mobility, as it must be the very first reason why you’re buying a car.
As we have been buying cars in Melbourne Australia for over two decades now, believe us when we tell you that there’ll always be some good buys and amazing deals around! The thing is, you just have to be diligent and smart enough to find them. And because we are experts in the used car buying and cash for cars industry, we would be able to help you in finding that great buy: a used car that’s in perfect shape and will fit your budget. They key to finding that? A careful and painstaking evaluation. So now we’ll give you some tips you could follow to evaluate the used cars you’re considering to buy:
Vehicle History Check
This one will require you to shell out some money; but it’ll be all worth it. There are lots of databases collated by professionals and businesses that provide you information on that used car you’re eyeing. By getting a car history check, you’ll know whether that car has been stolen, flooded, got into an accident, and if it has some pending financing. Those information are legitimate as they are provided by state and local government offices, insurance companies, auto salvage yards, and more. If you don’t have the money to do this, you may just check its VIN and get help from your local traffic and crime offices.
Personal Visual Check
Have you ever heard of someone buying a used car just by taking a look at some pictures? Without going personally to see or check it? We sure hope not. When buying a car that you don’t know anything about, at the least, you must personally go there and check it out. Even if you have little to no knowledge about engines and other car parts, you still have to inspect it – a basic, informal inspection will do. Schedule your visit during the day so you’ll get a clearer visual of all the parts. And if possible, do it outdoors. If it’s your first time, here’s what you must do: Check the BODY > TYRES > ENGINE > INTERIOR. Then, you must be able to double-check the following:
- Its paint work is consistent all throughout – no parts have different shades of color.
- Assuming that all used cars have some dents and scratches, just take them all into account (or jot them down)
- Body panels must all be aligned
- There’s no rusting inside and out
- Tyres (including the spare) are basically in good shape
- Doors and windows properly work
- There’s no electrical issue – as with the lights, signals, dashboard indicators
- The air conditioning system is working perfectly
- If you have some knowledge about the engine, check the radiator, battery, transmission, exhaust, and more.
The situation will get a little more suspicious if the owner would refuse to let you test drive the vehicle. But if he does allow you to, then it’s a great opportunity to really know if there’s something wrong with that car. Make sure to observe everything. Open your eyes, ears, and nose. And be sure to get a good feel about everything. Test the car during stop-and-go driving, neighborhood stroll, and at highway speed.
You may head to a pre-purchase inspection facility to have experts check the car thoroughly. But if you don’t have the budget to get such service, you may also ask your trusted car mechanic to take a closer look at that vehicle. Remember to tell the professional about the observations you have gotten from your visual check and test drive. Verify if your suspected car issues are indeed true and ask how serious they can be. It’ll also help them if you could have them take a look at the car history check you have obtained.
Whether or not you are a buying a used car, it is always smart to carefully check the vehicle before making a final purchase decision. Besides, it is our hard-earned money, convenience, and safety that are involved. If we unfortunately make the wrong move because we have failed to spot a car problem or issue, then we’ll regret our decision and be crying over spilled milk for a long time. The worst part is, we would be incurring more expenses in the future – way more than we had originally planned. So even if this whole process sure is tiring, effortful, and time-consuming, just bear with it a little. Because after doing so, you’ll be able to spot that great buy in no time.
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