Tips on Inspecting a Used Car Before Buying


carcraftBuying a used car is always met with a certain level of trepidation, much of which is entirely unwarranted. In truth, buying a used car really shouldn’t be much of a problem, as long as you do your homework and check it out thoroughly before handing over your hard earned money. While some sellers will try to pull the wool over your eyes, the vast majority will just be normal people trying to move their car onto a new owner.

When it comes to buying a used car, whether you find it via Carcraft or another method, you need to be certain that you have made the right checks for the vehicle thoroughly, so that there aren’t any surprises a few months down the line. In order to do this, you should consider these helpful and simple tips.

The place to start is the car’s exterior. If the car seems to have a fresh lick of paint on it, check around it for any damages, and find out when it was done and how much it cost. Often a cheap paint job will hide some of the more pressing problems the car may have.

Next, it would be wise to check for rust. Look at the wheel wells, the bumper, and check the underside of the vehicle as well. Whilst you’re doing that check for scratches and dents, check the vehicle for any superficial problems. Always look for inconsistencies with the bodywork, such as whether the doors line up properly, and whether the frame looks straight. If certain things appear slightly misleading, it may indicate that the car was involved in a serious crash beforehand, something that the seller may not wish to tell you up front.

Ask the seller for maintenance records, and ensure that they all match up with any problems you find with the car itself. For example, if you notice that the car isn’t aligned properly, and there is nothing in the maintenance report that suggests that the car was seriously damaged in the past, you might want to consider looking elsewhere. If something doesn’t add up, do not take the buy any further.


Start up the engine and see that it comes alive immediately. When you take the car out for a test drive, check the brakes to make sure that they don’t squeal or give off any funny sounds or smells. Make sure that the car turns properly and doesn’t feel laboured in its handling, and tick off particular aspects such as the lights, the windscreen wipers, and so on to ensure that everything inside works as advertised.

Once you are happy with everything, have the car checked over by a professional mechanic before you sign up to buy it. Tell the seller that you want to buy the car on the provision that there are no hidden problems uncovered after being professionally tested. They should be fine with this. If not, they can’t be trusted.

After everything has been fully checked over and ticked off, you should feel happy enough that the car is in a good enough condition to buy. If there is any scope for negotiating the price down because of problems you found, take the chance and play hardball. This is obviously easier if you have several options available to you, giving you a greater degree of power as your barter over a lower price.

If you do run into any problems, cancel all ties and re-start your search back with the likes of a leading car supermarket like Carcraft, or wherever else you may be searching for your new vehicle. Be patient and firm within your search, and eventually you’ll find a perfect match.


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