There are many ways you can buy a used car – you can go the old-fashioned route and select one from a private seller advertisement, or you can check online for any used car deals from dealerships. There are plenty of other ways to save money when you want to buy a new car, but of course, you have to make sure that the car you buy isn’t a ‘lemon’ and you can at least get some value out of your purchase. If you’re lucky, the car you buy could still give you more than a few years on the odometer. So how do you select a used car that makes all the difference? Here’s how to choose the best used car for your needs.
Do some research on the market value of the car
First things first – you should figure out the car’s market value. You should have a good idea of what the car is worth on the market today, and you can get a clearer picture of the car’s worth by checking Edmunds.com and Kelly Blue Book. They have plenty of tools online that can estimate a car’s value, but ensure you get as many details as possible – including the car’s make and model, mileage, year, options, and general condition. With this, you can start negotiating, and if the price is too high, you’re better off with the next in line.
Do a visual inspection
As we all know, the car’s condition is of the utmost importance, so a well-maintained vehicle says a lot about its owner. But when you do a visual inspection of the car, you should look at some things in particular – such as the seats, especially the driver’s seat and if you can fit comfortably in it; the interior, including the floor, the car’s doors and ceiling. Then, for the exterior, check the car’s trim, paint job, and bumpers, and check if there are any major dents or scratches. Aside from these, check the lights of the car and the mufflers and tires.
Don’t forget the smell!
Not many would know this, but the smell of the vehicle has a lot to do with its condition because certain odours – such as the smell of mildew and smoke – are unpleasant. But there are also certain smells, such as the smell of burning – gas or oil – that is a bit more severe as they can indicate deeper problems with the engine, as confirmed by used car Utah specialists like Young Automotive.
Inspect the engine
Another thing to watch out for is the engine – a poor engine could indicate a lack of maintenance. If there is evidence of oil on the engine, it could mean leaking. If the belts and hoses have cracks, this could be expensive and indicate a lack of maintenance.
Don’t neglect to drive
At the end of the day, the inspection won’t mean much if there’s no test drive – and take note of the small things, such as the amenities, power steering, and power windows. You should also check the car’s sound system, heating, and air conditioning. Lastly – if there are any flashing lights, check with the dealer or owner and see if any maintenance is required.