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Tips For Testing A Car Before Purchase

Buying a new car is a very exciting prospect, although when this new car happens to be a pre-owned car, there may be some hesitation involved. We’ve all heard horror stories from friends of friends who bought a lemon after not properly inspecting a car before buying.

The excitement becomes too much and, all of a sudden, an uninformed decision has been made. You drive the car home and can’t sleep properly because you’re just so excited. The next morning you find a huge pool of oil in your garage…and your heart sinks. You’re quoted a repair bill of eight hundred dollars and, suddenly, your heart is beating out of your stomach.

Situations like these can be easily avoided with a careful eye – either that of a qualified mechanic, or your own. Not everyone wants to spend money to have a mechanic perform an inspection, which is why, if you want to save money by properly inspecting a car yourself, it’s important to familiarise yourself with these simple tips to get you started:

  • Make sure that when you inspect a car, your environment is properly illuminated. It can be difficult to spot small, almost unnoticeable flaws a car might have without sufficient light. This could include body marks, dents, patches of rust, scratches, and similar defects.
  • It is important to look at the tyres of the car. Firstly, for obvious things like blading or low tread; but then for less obvious things, like even wear. Issues stemming from uneven wear include under inflation and feathering (which indicates the vehicle is poorly aligned).
  • Check underneath the body of the car, the bonnet and the boot area for any signs of rust. There might also be evidence of welding that may indicate that the car was repaired after an accident. This is especially evident where there are large gaps, which indicate poor quality crash repairs.
  • Oil leaks are a very good indication that the car is suffering from mechanical issues. Check the space below the car, in addition to checking the dipstick for the oil level. A low oil level indicates that the owner has been neglecting their vehicle.

Keep these in mind next time you examine a used car and you should have a far better idea of the true condition of the car you are looking at. Better yet, hire a mechanic to look at the car for complete peace of mind.

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