what to consider when buying a used car

So you’ve decided to buy a used car – that’s great! In today’s market, used carsĀ are completely worth it! Buying a used car is much better than forking over a crazy amount of money on a brand new one. However, there are a few things you need to consider as you’re looking through used cars.

This article is going to show you exactly what to consider when buying a used car. Let’s take a look!

Vehicle History

One of the first things you should always look at with a used car is its history. Most reputable companies can provide you with a full report but if they don’t, take it upon your self to look it up!

You can simply do this by asking for the VIN number of the car and then search it on the internet. There are plenty of websites that can run a car report for free.

You will want to look and see if it’s been in any accidents before and if so, how serious was it. In the report, you should also be able to see its service record – this is important to note so you know if the car was well taken care of!

If the report comes back with an accident or a bad service record, it may be best to find a different car.

Interior and Exterior

Thoroughly check through the outside and inside of the used vehicle. Look for scratches, dents, or rust! These all will only get worse down the road so you want to consider these seriously.

As you’re going through the vehicle, check for the functionality of everything as well, including:

  • Do the doors open and close properly?
  • Do the locks all work?
  • Do all of the windows go all the way up and back down?
  • Do the hood and trunk close and open?
  • How are the seatbelts?
  • What about the mirrors, do they move properly?
  • Do the front and back seat recline as they should?
  • Do the AC and heating work?
  • What about the radio?

These are all things to take into consideration as you inspect the inside and outside of the used car.

The Car’s Mileage

Another thing to always take into consideration is the mileage of the car. Now, low mileage doesn’t mean the car is in good shape, and likewise, high mileage doesn’t necessarily mean that it is in bad shape.

If the car has high mileage, look at the maintenance of the vehicle. Has it been well taken care of or does it not have any service records? If it has a good service record than the vehicle could still last a long time for you.

When a used car has low mileage it does mean it may have had less wear and tear. However, if the car hasn’t been used much and has been sitting for a while, the plastic and rubber parts may have started to dry out and crack. This could cause serious issues or cost you in repairs. So make sure the car has been used recently and consistently.

Bring a Mechanic

Another thing you can consider doing when look at used cars is bringing a mechanic. If you’re not well versed with cars or mechanically inclined this might be a good idea for you.

This can help you ensure that everything within the car is working as it should. Mechanics work on cars all day and know what they should look, sound, and smell like. A mechanic may be able to detect an issue, which can save you from costly repairs.

Check the Tires

As you inspect the car, remember to look at the tires as well. Tires are not cheap and you wouldn’t want to have to spend the extra money right away to replace them.

Make sure that they still have tread on them and that the thread has been worn evenly. If the tread appears to be uneven, this could be a sign of another serious issue with alignment, steering, suspension, or frame issues.

It would be best to avoid a vehicle that might have these issues.

Test Drive

One of the best ways to inspect a car is test driving it. This is going to give you a feel for the vehicle and let you know if you even like it.

Not only that, but test driving it may prove to show the vehicle might have some other issues. You want to make sure that the car is moving as it should. Pay attention to the following:

  • The car’s acceleration
  • Does it break as it should?
  • How does the suspension feel?
  • Are there any weird noises from driving or turning?
  • Does it turn ok?
  • Is the transmission shifting good or is there a delay?

You want to make sure the used car is doing all of that with no issues, otherwise, you should consider a different car.

What to Consider When Buying a Used Car

In an article about car prices rising, ConsumerAffairs shared that in February of 2020, the average new truck and car cost around $37k – 3 percent higher than last year! Buying a used car is much better and has a ton of benefits. Just remember to take into consideration everything we talked about above.

If you are looking for a used car or have questions about used cars, head over to our contact page and send us a message!