Buy a used car can comes with a lot things to consider and, this can also seem overwhelming and difficult. Before you pay for a used car, take your time to check the exterior, interior, engine and transmission to make sure there aren’t any major problems. Test drive the car to ascertain its performance on the road. Finally check the vehicle’s history and negotiate a fair price before coming to a final decision.
Here are car inspection tips to aid your decision;
Check Car Body
Look for rust spots, dents, or scratches on the car body. Ensure the car is clean for the paint condition to be very visible. Rust, scratches, and dents on the car body don’t affect the performance of the engine, but they can affect the monetary value of the car.
Frame damage, even when repaired, will greatly reduce the life expectancy of a used car. Inspect the undercarriage and where it connects the front fenders and holds the top of the radiator. Check the bolt heads at the top of the fenders inside the bonnet.
Scratch marks on the fenders could indicate that the fenders have been replaced or realigned, possibly after a collision. Check that the bonnet of the car opens easily and prop to remain open. Open and close the bonnet to make sure that it is easy to access and closes securely.
Check the Interior of the Car
Check the seats and upholstery for any tears, stains, or damage. Make sure the seats can be adjusted and comfortable. Check the air-conditioning to make sure it’s working. Check the temperature control by turning on the heat and the cold. Inspect the fan speed on high and low to know if it’s working properly
Inspect the Light and Electrical System of the Car
Check the radio, switches, buttons and all the lights are working. Some of these malfunctions might be a major electrical problem. Don’t buy a car with a major electrical or sensor problem.
Inspect the Car Boot
Check the car boot for any sign of rust or water damage. Carefully look out for cracks, holes, and other signs of wear and tear inside of the boot that would indicate damage. Check that the boot opens easily and closes securely. If the damage or crack are just cosmetic then you have nothing much to worry.
Check the Tires for Wear
Inspect the surface of the tire for uneven wearing that could indicate a bad alignment. Worn steering/suspension components or frame damage could cause bad alignment. And this can affect the performance of the vehicle.
Inspect the Exhaust System
Any black spots on the exhaust system can indicate leaking, so look out for these. Inspect the car frame for damage and rust. Rust on the exhaust indicate wear and tear but it doesn’t necessarily mean that you shouldn’t buy the car. It may just enhance your bargaining advantage.
Dents or cracks in the exhaust system are major red flags because exhaust are expensive to replace or repair. You shouldn’t buy a vehicle with exhaust damage unless you’re prepared to pay for repairs.
When the engine is cool, check the exhaust with your finger. Greasy grime means that there’s a possibly costly problem.
Inspect the Hoses and Belts for Damage
The hoses and belts shouldn’t have cracks or obvious signs of wear. Check the timing belt, which can be costly to replace. A good radiator hose should not be soft and also not brittle.
Check for any dark brown oil stains on the engine block. This indicates that there is a leak in a gasket, and could possibly lead to an expensive repair in the future. The fluid levels should not be empty. If any of the fluid tanks are empty, it could be a sign that there’s a leak.
A foam residue on the inside of engine oil cap indicates a leaking head gasket. This head gasket could be complicated and expensive to repair. Don’t buy a car with damaged gasket and leakage problem.
Pull the transmission dipstick to check the fluid. The fluid should be pink or red and full even while the engine is running. If the fluid isn’t the right color and smells burnt, it could indicate that there’s a leak or the transmission is damaged. A car may have dark transmission fluid but it should not look or smell burnt.
Before Your Final Decision
Test drive the car with the owner. Ensure that the brake, clutch, gear and transmission system are working well. Observe the suspension system, exhaust smoke, engine and car sound.
You may need to bring someone who knows cars to inspect the car. Two heads are better than one. It is a good idea to bring along a good mechanic or trusted friend with automotive experience to check things that you are not sure of.
If everything checks out, now is time to negotiate the price of the car.
A good car business deal must not be 100% because you will a perfect used car. Depending on the condition and quality of the vehicle, feel free to offer a price. Don’t forget this fact, no matter how good the car is today; it will certainly require maintenance to stay in good shape and will depreciate in value over time.