More people turn to used cars because of the increasing prices of new vehicles. Others choose used cars because of the fast depreciation of a car’s value. However, finding a good car deal is not a walk in the park. You need to keep an eye out for hidden damage. Otherwise, you will end up with a proverbial lemon. Below is a detailed checklist of the things you need to consider before purchasing a used auto.
Thorough mechanical inspection
Start by checking the exterior. Does the car have deep paint scratches? DIY paint touch-up kits for this kind of damage can set you back by $300 to $900. How about the bumpers? Do you see any visible dents? You might need at least $1000 to have your bumper fixed. Make a mental list of any damage. Count every exterior car part that requires a repair job.
You should also do the same for the interior parts. Check the chassis, motor, exhaust system, oil pump, and carburetor. If there are a lot of damaged mechanical parts, you need to drop the deal. Surely you don’t want to end up losing thousands of dollars to get those defective parts replaced. It is not worth the trouble!
Ask for a test drive
When you visit dealerships, be sure to ask for a test drive for your target car. It will help you assess the driving condition of the vehicle, most especially the brakes. You need to feel how to vehicle responds to shifts plus sharp turns. Pay extra attention to the noise made by the engine when you drive around. While on the test drive, you should also look at performing a leak test. It’s not good to find fluids leaking from the engine.
Bring a trusted mechanic with you
With the help of a professional mechanic, you can easily spot potential issues with the car engine. They can also find hidden engine problems car dealers won’t divulge to you. By understanding the real condition of the car, you can quickly estimate its value.
The car is in excellent condition, what now?
If you don’t find any problems with the vehicle, your next step should be learning more about the model. What do car owners say about their vehicles? What are their complaints? Then, you need to ask for a vehicle history report to identify any ownership issues or previous accident records. You also need to learn how to decode the VIN of the vehicle. This is a crucial step to ensure that you don’t purchase a stolen car.
Once you have everything figured out, you can head to your selection of dealerships in Utah to negotiate the price. If you plan to finance the car, you must research the current rates in the city. This way, you have more control over the negotiation. Now you are more prepared to buy a used vehicle. Just follow the steps above so that you can get the best deal for your money.