6 Factors to be aware of Before Buying a Used Car

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Getting your hands on a used car has a lot to do with researching carefully and spotting problem areas to help you save expensive repairs in the future. However, it can be challenging to start your search, navigate the models, and analyze their specifications to find the right one. You can get more info here on various pre-used car models and their features which could help with your purchase process. But before you get down with buying, here are some vital things you should look at.

Window sticker

When buying a used car, you must read the window sticker carefully. Your car dealer must comply with the regulations of the Federal Trade Commission to post a buyer’s guide on the pre-used vehicles. The attached guide provides information like if the car has a warranty or if it is being sold as-is and the percentage of repair costs the dealer needs to pay. The information in the guide is likely to override the presence of contrary provisions within the sales contract. Hence, if coverage changes are negotiated, the dealer needs to alter the guide, and it must reflect the changes before the sale. Moreover, if you have opted for a car with no warranties, the issues you face post-purchase are not the dealer’s responsibility.  

Inspect the exterior

Glass: Make sure that there are no cracks or pocked areas in your car’s glass. If the car has cracks in the windshield, the damages may worsen over time and lead to a costly repair.

Tires: You may overlook the tires while browsing through used car models. It is alright if the tires have slight wear and tear, but you can’t buy one that needs immediate replacement. Also, you must look at the kind of wear in the tires, as each type of wear indicates a specific problem. For example, there is an alignment issue when a tire tread lies down in the middle or is uneven on the edges. Or, when you see that front tires are more worn out than back tires, it means that the front tires carried the engine’s weight throughout. So, before buying, thoroughly check the condition of the tires, which could help you prevent a lot of hassle.

Suspension: Check the condition of the shock absorbers. If they are in good shape, the car will not bounce up and down. If you hear any clunking sound in it, the suspension joints or wheel bearings may be shot.

Lights and lenses: You should check that all lights and reflections are working and not cracked or fogged with moisture.

Rust: Rust can be a severe issue for your car. So, while making the purchase, check rust on the trunk or cabin floor and inspect if the carpeting feels musty or wet.

Inspect the interior

Odor: The car’s odor can tell you a lot about its condition. A mildewy, moldy and musty smell could be indicative of water leakage.

If the car has an acrid smell, someone must have smoked inside the car, and remember, it can be quite difficult to get rid of such odor.

Seats: You need to try out all the seats to be sure that they are comfortable. Also, check if the upholstery is worn or ripped. You may also try different seat adjustments to ensure you have a good position while driving.

Pedals: The rubber on gas pedals, clutch, and brake indicates the extent of car usage. If the rubber has worn in spots, it means the car has been driven a lot. 

Inspect underneath

Leaks: You must not forget to check for leaks in your car. The most common leaks that you may find are engine coolant and engine oil. The coolant should be orange or greenish and not rusty or milky. Also, red or green fluid on the engine is not a good sign.

Tailpipe: Feel the tailpipe for residue. An indicator of burnt oil is black or greasy residue. It ideally should be dark gray and dry. While it may have some rust, heavy rust could call for a change in the exhaust system.

Buying a used car can offer you a lot of benefits. However, you need to be careful about purchasing one in the right state so that you don’t have to make costly and immediate repairs.

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