Confused At Used Car Garage? Here Is The Helpful Checklist To Pick The Best Used Car

by IndianAuto Team | 09/10/2018
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Buying a used car can be a daunting task. You certainly don’t want to bring home a car that has a bunch of faults that lie hidden until you drive it for a few times. Here is the used car buying checklist to make the task easier.

One of the most important things to consider when buying a car is whether you should purchase a new car or an old one. Buying a new car is definitely beneficial to your wallet, but it is not likely to be an exciting task and may entail a lot of risks one way or another, be it that you purchase from an individual or from a professional dealer. However, there are some tips you can follow to mitigate the risks and ensure that the car you bring home is the car that you expect it to be, or at least closest to what you hope for.

Before actually going to the dealer’s place and taking a look at and checking out cars, you need to do some research yourself first to save time and effort. The first thing you want to make up your mind about before going to the dealer is a shortlist of models you are looking for. After that, ask around and look up on the Internet to know the problems and repair costs that the cars usually have, so that you can kind of anticipate what to inspect when you stand in front of the real cars.

Man researching car on tablet with coffee cup nearby

You should do your own research beforehand

Also, despite whatever models you want to take a look at, there is a simple checklist that can help you with your decision making process. Make sure to bring at least one copy with you when you visit your dealer.

1. Exterior

  • Are there any major scratches or dents on the body?

  • Is there any chip, gap, breakage, or gap on the windshield?

  • Is there any rusty mark on the door edges, hinges, and trunk?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with all the doors?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with the headlights, directional lights, brights, and tail lights?

2.  Interior

  • Is any warning light on the dashboard illuminated?

  • Is it possible to adjust the seats smoothly and easily?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with all the gauges?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with all the locks, from both the inside and the outside?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with the hazard lights?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with the power windows?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with the windshield wipers, blades, and fluid?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with the air conditioning/heater?

  • Is there any malfunctioning with the stereo?

3. Tires

  • Is there any crack or cut on the tyres?

  • Is the tread unevenly worn?

  • Is there any problem with the spare tyres?

  • Is there any problem with the jack?

4. Engine

  • Is the check engine light on?

  • Is there any weird odour from the engine?

  • Is there any fluid leaking?

  • Is there any weird noise, such as knocking, ticking, or hissing?

  • Is there any sign of corrosion on the battery terminal?

  • Is there funny-coloured exhaust fume?

5. Brakes

  • Is there malfunctioning with the parking brake?

  • Is there any grinding noise when you apply pressure on the brake?

  • Is the car unstable or leaning on one side when you apply pressure on the brake?

6. Handling

  • Is there resistance, shaking, or vibrating when you turn around the corners?

  • Is there any lagging or jolting when you shift gears?

  • Is there any weird noise when the car is in reverse?

After doing your pre-inspection work, now you are at the dealer’s place. Please remember to bring your checklist, a small flashlight, and some paper towels (for the dirty engine fluid checking) with you to do the examining work. You need to take your time with the inspection, so even if the dealer shows any sign of irritation or impatience, you should keep going slowly and carefully. Or in case the dealer flat out refuses to let you do an examination, you should take your leave. And another thing, when at the dealer’s place, do not forget to ask him or her for the car’s history report. If the dealer says there is no such report in existence, you should have doubts about the actual quality of the car.

a girl checking a car

Take your time inspecting the car carefully

When the visual inspection is done, you need to ask the dealer for a test drive, and while many people do not have a test drive, this is actually very important so that you can make your best assessment of the car. A decent and good dealer will let you have your test drive. But if he or she says no, it is high time that you left, too.

Test drive

Test driving is a must

Read more tips and guides from IndianAuto

3 reasons why you should buy a used car

How to buy a used car in India

What are The Best Used Cars with High Mileage in India?

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