If you’re going to buy a car and specifically, a second-hand car, then it’s not a decision that you can rush. This is a massive financial decision that is going to impact you for years. Unless you sell the car on and even then you might not get the money you paid for it, particularly if you didn’t complete the right checks in the first place. So, what should you be watching out for when you buy a car? We’re glad you asked.
BRAND NEW PARTS
Brand new parts on an older vehicle shouldn’t be considered a massive red flag but does raise questions. Why did these parts need replacing? If for instance, the owner has replaced the pedals or the gear stick, then this does suggest significant wear and tear. That’s fine as long as you check the car doesn’t have any significant issues from a lot of mileage.
WHAT IF IT’S A LOW MILEAGE?
You might think that a low mileage is a good news when buying a car and it can be. But be careful here because a low mileage can also mean that the previous owner wasn’t able to drive it that much due to a serious issue that they couldn’t fix but didn’t stop it from passing the MOT. On average a car will complete about 7,200 miles per year. So, it’s simple maths based on how old the car is. Now, there are exceptions here. It could be a second car or even a summer car. You’ll often find that cars with retractable roofs have lower mileages because they tend to be driven through the summer months. In this case, a low mileage shouldn’t be a massive cause for concern.
If you look at a car from a source like a used car supermarket, then you still need to arrange a test drive. If you fail to do this then it’s going to be to your own detriment. Ultimately, there are certain issues that can’t be spotted just by looking at a car, particularly in pictures. When you do take the car out for a spin, test the brakes, steering, and how it handles. Some problems such as a car that is swerving to the left while driving, are going to be more expensive to fix. This is just one example and another piece of key advice would be to listen out for any peculiar noises. Drive with the window down because they will likely be coming from the outside of the vehicle. Don’t have the radio on.
Finally, you should check different aspects of the history for the vehicle. You need to look at how many drivers the car has had and the type of drivers. Cars driven by women tend to be in better shape so that’s something to keep in mind. You also want to check if it’s been in any accidents and you can find this out with a quick check online. Ultimately, you need to know exactly what you’re buying.
Photo Credit: Hyundai