Things to Check Before Handing Over Cash for a Used Car

Posted on 18 September 2017 by Tony Santos

When buying a used car, you’re usually going to get one that’s got no problems or no known problems. However, there are other times when you’ll deal with sellers who don’t know if there are any problems, or they’re simply not telling you if there are. Therefore, it’s crucial you run a few checks on the used car before handing over any cash.

Here are some of the important things you should check when buying a used vehicle.

Ensure the Car is on Level Ground Before Checking Tires

If a vehicle is parked on a slope, you’re not going to get any real indication of its overall condition. Ensure the car is parked on level ground before doing any checks, so you know your checks aren’t pointless. Check for any car sagging and ensure the tires are in good condition before you drive the vehicle for a test drive. If you don’t inspect used cars for sale on flat ground, it might prove to be a waste of time when you take a car out for a test drive.

Investigate the Interior for Water Damage

Usually, just by opening the car door you’ll get a smell for how well the car has been looked after. You may get a whiff of dampness; that smell is hard to hide. Check between the seats and the inside of the doors. Also, inspect the sun roof (if any) by running your hand around the rubber lining to see if it’s damp. If you really want to inspect for leaks, ask the car owner if they’re willing to give the car a hosing down.

Make Sure Any Inside Hardware is Working Properly

While you’re checking used cars for water leaks and any other interior damage, you’ll want to inspect the dash to ensure all hardware is working properly. Test the air con, radio, indicators, mileage, and individual warning lights to give you peace of mind. The electric windows, windscreen wipers, onboard computer, and the other hardware can be tested while you’re out on the road giving the car a test drive.

Under the Hood is Where It Really Matters

If you’re not clued up when it comes to mechanics, bring along a friend who is. You’ll want to check under the hood for any problems in terms of rust and damage. Pay close attention to any corrosion on car parts and check pipes and hoses for any cracks or other damage. It’s crucial you inspect under the hood thoroughly because that’s where the most expensive car parts live.

Of course, you’ll want to give the car a drive around the block a couple of times to ensure it runs as smoothly as the seller says it does. Sometimes the seller might not know if there are any problems so it’s up to you to give the car a once over to make sure it’s in perfect working order. While you’re on the road, make sure the brakes work nicely and the car is a joy to ride before you hand over any cash.

Categorized | Car Tips

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