Used Car Inspection Tips

Used Car Inspection Things to Beware of

used-carAs mechanics, we are accustomed to hearing our customers say, “But I just bought this car!”  Buying a car that is used is often a positive experience, but if you do not know what problems look like when you see them, you could be in for a lot of future repairs.

To help you buy your next used car, we have compiled a list of 8 things to look for in an inspection report.  Of course, if you need a second opinion before you buy, call us to see how Leavitt’s Auto Care can help.

1. Check the exterior

Do you see any dents, rust, or scratches?  Is the paint job rough in places?  Is this indicated in the paperwork?

2. Belts and hoses

Pop the hood and look for cracks in hoses and belts.  Does anything else look like it is in poor repair?

3. Engine

A thorough examination of the engine will be best done by a mechanic.  However, if you pop the hood and see leaks, rust, or corrosion, you might have serious engine problems in the near future. A burnt smell is also a cause for concern.

4. Tires

Is the car on level ground?  If it is not, have them move the car to an area that is level.  It will allow you to see how the tires sit.  If they look worn, bulge too much, or are bald, think about how much money it will take to replace them.

5. Odometer

A car that has too many miles will cost you.  An older car with few miles will also cost you.  Consider this when you are making a tough decision about a lower price because you may be in for multiple repairs in the near future.

6. Lights

Do not forget to check interior lights as well as exterior lights.  Dim lights or ones that do not work at all could indicate a problem with the electrical system or the fuses.

7. Frame

Used car dealers are required to tell you if the vehicle was in an accident previously or has been damaged in a flood.  A buyer can look for welding and scratch marks around the fenders and trunk with a flashlight to detect issues.

8. Brakes

When you are test-driving, make sure you try out the car at 30 MPH or more.  When you are in a safe area like an empty parking lot, press hard on the brakes.  This will test them to see if they are in good working order.

Buying a used car has many benefits. If you would like Leavitt’s Auto Care to do your pre-purchase inspection, call us today!