Buying a used car always comes with risks. No matter how reliable the dealership is, a thorough inspection is crucial before buying a used car as it will save you from any repairs or breakdowns that could come up later on. By following the steps mentioned below, you can uncover potential automotive issues and ensure the vehicle meets the necessary safety standards.
Inspecting The Exterior
Take a walk around the vehicle to spot any visible dents, scratches, or signs of paint damage. Pay attention to areas like the windshield, bumpers, headlights, windows, and wheel arches. If you have identified any irregularity, inquire about the damage with the dealership or the owner. Repairs and replacements of minor issues and parts can be negotiated before signing the deal. However, if there is major damage, it is better to look for another vehicle as it may compromise safety while driving.
The ideal time to inspect the vehicle is during the daytime with ample sunlight. Inspecting the vehicle during broad daylight helps in spotting a repainted surface. Examine the exterior thoroughly and look for visible differences in the glare. A genuine paint job always feels smooth to touch whereas an aftermarket paint job has a rough texture. Comparing the paint texture of different areas will assist in determining whether the car has been repaired or not.
Checking The Underbody
An underbody inspection of the vehicle is necessary to ensure the body is not affected by rust. A car with rust all over the frame indicates that the vehicle has been previously exposed to areas of heavy rain or flooding. Rusty cars should be avoided as rust makes the vehicle frame weak.
Heavily modified cars with a lot of aftermarket parts should also be examined completely as the vehicle might have been driven under rough conditions. Vehicles like these are prone to accidents and might require you to consult car accident lawyers if there is personal injury involved. There are a lot of scenarios where an accident lawyer might come in handy. Still, ensuring your safety should be the priority so accidents like these can be avoided altogether.
Identifying Major Repairs
While issues like minor scratches and dents can be resolved afterward, always look for any major dents or repairs that have been done previously. Cars with major repairs can pose safety issues while on the road. You should also look for any signs of repairs on the floor or the insides like having a welded frame or punch holes. A roof inspection should also be done to look for any damage. Minor scratches or dents can be ignored but a car with a redone roof is an indication that the vehicle toppled over or was damaged significantly and has undergone extensive repairs.
Checking The Tyres
On average, tires last from 30,000 to 40,000 kilometers before they need to be replaced with new ones. Ask the seller about the condition of tires and never hesitate to replace old tires with new ones if they are already worn out. Another thing to pay attention to is the vehicle’s mileage. For example, if the car has been driven around for more than 25000 kilometers, the condition of the tires would not be new. However, if you find new tires on a relatively older vehicle, it might be an indication of a recent accident.
Lastly, check the engine and the interiors to confirm the used car you want to buy is in working condition and can fulfill the road safety standards set by the relevant authorities. Inspecting a vehicle might be a daunting task for some. Therefore, you can also, for a small fee, utilize car inspection services that can easily help you determine whether you are making the best decision.
Also read: What to Do After a Car Wreck in a Rental Car