Tips for Buying a Used Car
Buying a used car is a very good financial decision due to the rapid depreciation of new cars. Finding great deals on used cars is more than a possibility given the large amounts of used cars that are available at new car dealer showrooms and used car dealers every single year. However, buying used cars also encompasses several risks that may backfire to the buyer within a relatively short period of time. The risks are often associated with any potential damage to the car that is not visible, internal damage, loose parts and other components that may need considerable fixes or repairs. Other risks entail the possible used car fraud in buying a car that seems to be in great conditions but it is actually in terrible conditions within all possible aspects.
The following list represents the top tips when buying a used car, taking into consideration all the possible aspects that must be kept in mind to avoid any potential frauds, scams or long term damages for the value of the car itself.
1. Always Make Sure to Check for Rusted Floorboards
Rusted floorboards represent a major safety hazard for any driver in any form of vehicle. Rusted floorboards are responsible for keeping all the vehicle’s exhaust and carbon monoxide emissions out of the actual interior of the car where passengers travel. Buyers who plan to buy a used car must make sure to check for rusted floorboards at a car mechanic. If any part of the floorboard is rusted, then it must be changed or repaired in order to prevent safety hazards in the long term. Repairing a rusted floorboard can be a major expense and requires keen mechanical skills to fully repair any major part of the rusted floorboard itself.
2. Visualize Damaged Frames
Damaged frames can be easily visible whenever a car has been in an accident or in a crash. However, there are many times where the frames are damaged internally and not always externally, making it invisible for buyers to actually determine whether the car has damaged frames or not. It is imperative to check for damaged frames both internally and externally in order to prevent accidents through the loss of control. The frames of the car are the major parts that receive the most resistance while traveling such as air resistance, friction and other aspects. Frames must be checked thoroughly every now and then so that accidents and damages can be avoided at all costs.
3. Check for Oil Leaks
Oil leaks signify problems within the internal combustion engine of the car and unmaintained internal parts. Buyers should always check any oil leaks present whenever planning to buy a used car. It is fundamental to check these oil leaks since the repair costs of the oil filters can be quite expensive.
4. Check for Coolant Leaks
Coolant fluid maintains the car cool and avoids any overheating issues within the engine and its parts. If a coolant leak is present on a car, then it represents serious trouble when it comes to the engine reliability and it is very likely that the car will overheat very frequently. Repairing the entire cooling system of the car is a major expense as well as the coolant fluid itself. Buyers are encouraged to check the car’s cooling system and any potential coolant leaks.
5. Making Sure that the Engine Lights Work Effectively
There are several engine lights that let the driver know whether there is trouble with the engine on the car’s dashboard. It is important to verify that all engine lights work efficiently since the driver must be fully aware what is happening to the engine at any given time.
6. Searching for Maintenance Records
Used car dealers usually give false promises with regards to full and detailed maintenance records. It is the buyer’s responsibility to obtain all maintenance records from the seller. It is also recommended to search online for auto maintenance records and past owner’s maintenances if existent. Proper maintenance over the life of the used car is a key factor to decide in whether buying it or not.
7. Searching for Crash History
Over 35% of all used cars sold in the United States have been in at least one crash. It is highly recommended to look for a crash history report in order to be aware of how many crashes the used car has been involved in, whether the car suffered any damage and other important information regarding the crash and its impact on the car. Crash history reports also prevent buyers from buying repossessed used cars when the previous owners have been delinquents due to non-payments.
8. Water Damage
Many natural disasters have occurred in the United States that have severely damaged cars, especially hurricanes, floods and other disasters associated with water. These damaged cars are often put into the used car market in order to be resold. Used car buyers must be aware of the conditions of the car relating to water damage through a careful and professional examination of an auto mechanic. Only an experienced professional mechanic will be able to conduct this type of examination and evaluate if the car has any water damage that may cause problems in the long term.
Buying a used car is not a process that buyers should not take so simply. There are numerous factors that must be addressed in order to avoid getting a used car that is damaged. Getting the most value for one’s money incorporates extensive research in terms of all the tips mentioned in order to verify the true condition of the used vehicle, its history and projected long term reliability. When all these factors are taken into careful consideration and practiced, getting a great deal on a used car is more than a possibility, with the peace of mind that the car is reliable and highly optimal for continuous use in the future.