First Checks, Buying Used Cars

Buying Used Cars, First Checks 

The general trend is to buy used cars to save some money, new cars can often require substantial budgets. Choosing the right used car does take some effort, you cannot make a rash purchase no matter who the current owner happens to be. The wrong purchase can result in the secondhand car, draining your finances. It is rightly said that a professional mechanic is the right person to evaluate a used car. However there is much that you can do in terms of inspection. Do a preliminary check and if everything does look interesting, fix an appointment with a mechanical expert and bring him or her along on the next visit.

Preliminary Checks:

It is quite common for cars to develop leaks after being driven for a while. Bend down and look for any drops on the floor under the car, do the same thing after the engine has been turned on for a few minutes.

Check the doors by opening and closing them, the cover of the trunk is also something that needs to be checked. The movements should be smooth and not jittery, rattling doors are a sign that repairs might have be done soon. Check the door locks both from inside and outside, check the keys and make sure that the doors shut tight when closed.

While some worn out features might be acceptable when buying a used car, there are somethings that you just cannot ignore. The external lights in a car perform important functions, dimmed or burnt out lights can endanger you and others sharing the roads. Get someone to sit in the car and operate the lights, stand beside the car and check the headlights and tail lights. The turning lights need to be in perfect condition, turn them off and on a couple of times and make sure that they work.

The last thing that you want to do is to purchase a used car and spend money right away on replacing worn out tires. Inspect each of the tires, the threading should be at least half centimeter deep. If the seller does not seem interested in replacing worn out tires, work the cost into the pricing when you negotiate the deal.

The presence of rust on the metal work of used cars can imply that, a fresh painting job needs to be done. If you buy a used car in such a condition, expect to pay a tidy sum for the painting job and be prepared to have the car in service for a few weeks. Inspect the edges of the doors and the hood on the trunk. Open the car and take off the rubber mats on the floor. Severe rusting at any of these places can mean that, you need to look at another car and leave this one aside.

A leaking air conditioner or dripping oil can result in a smelly interior. Slide into the front seat of the car and sniff around. If you get the sweet smell of a flowery room spray, keep all doors open and let the smell lessen. Now turn on the engine and look for any unusual smells creeping into the car.

If you have got this far without any major issues, you can now spend some time checking the interiors. The music system if it does exist, should be in good working order. Turn the volume up and down, any hissing or jarring sounds could mean that the system needs to be replaced. Feel the cooling and heating systems, do the controls make a difference. Worn out seats can look very ugly, repairs and replacements can add up to significant spending.

Now step back and try to make an assessment of the features and mechanics that you just checked, does the used car still seem like a good deal. If you decide to go ahead, take the next step, hire a professional mechanic to do a more detailed check. He or she should also, be able to give you an idea of repair costs where necessary.