Confused about what you need to check while buying a used car? Here are all the tips you need to make a worthy purchase.
The automobile sector is said to be facing a slow-down in the new car sales. However, we feel the market space is now shared by the used car space too and that brought a decline in the sales of new cars. In the recent past, the cars have seen technical advancements in coordination with effective quality control from the manufacturers, and that has aided them with longevity and reliability. And with these improved parameters, the car owners are at ease to find new buyers for their worshipped possessions. With so much on its side, the used car market is growing exponentially and sooner or later it will have an almost similar market share as the new car market. But, making a car purchase from the never-ending pool of pre-worshipped cars isn’t easy. One needs to take care of a lot of things, what? Here we have compiled a list of used car buying tips that will come handy while performing the rituals to get you a new car.
Fix your needs; you need a hatchback, a sedan, an SUV or some other body style to fulfil your need from the set of 4 wheels. The used car market is immensely populated with options and being sure about the need, would ease up the daunting task to find something potent. The hatchbacks and SUVs are popular choices among the car buyers, thus have a higher asking price, while saloons and other body styles like pickups and coupes are always a bargain.
The Indian market has seen a lot of auto giants failing to perform here and eventually packed their bags and went back home. Manufacturers like Chevrolet, Opel, Peugeot, and Daewoo have aborted their operations in India, leaving almost no support to the existing owners of their cars. There are other manufacturers which are just there on the tip of the cliff that can fall of any moment. Also, there are cars that have received a generation change or are either discontinued from the manufacturer’s end. Deals on such cars appear lucrative but are a pain in the long run. It’s better advised to stay away from such cars unless you know a good garage that can source the parts for you. However, if everything falls in place, then such are cars are so much more cars for the price one needs to pay.
So, once it is finalized that what car is it that you are checking, there are a few more used car buying tips that help will help in finding if the car is a perfect purchase or not. As there are two phases involved in buying a used car, one is fixing over a make and model, and another is to check the car shortlisted from the listing is fit or not.
Used Car Buying Tips – Exterior and Interior
A clean exterior is important to a car, as it creates an ever-lasting impression about the car. The exterior suffers a lot of damage and undergoes deterioration on an everyday basis given our Indian driving conditions. Thus, a detailed examination of the exterior is required. One should check for any dents, hits, cracks, scratches, rust spots, or if the paint is chipping from any panel of the car. The buyer should also check for any paint difference between the panels that would hint of any accident if the car has met with. The car should also be checked for any defects in the panel gaps of the doors, bonnet, and tailgate. A check for any crack should also be made for the windscreen and other glass panes, but anyways they are a cheaper fix.
The alloys should also be checked for any cracks or scratches around the outer edge, as they are an expensive fix. The tyres being a part of the exterior should be checked for any cracks, punctures, and signs of wear.
The interior being the place, where a car owner spends too much time in, that’s the reason a checklist for the same is here in our used car buying tips list. A car should be checked on for any electronic aftermarket add-ons in the interiors, as that voids the warranty of the car. The door pads, dashboard, center console, and other plastic parts should also be examined carefully for any cracks or decaying plastic. The seat cushioning is prone to go for a toss with an old car, and so is the headliner. Also, check if there are any marks of burnt or soiled upholstery. A deep inspection on the floorboard inside should be performed by removing the carpets, to check for any rusted patch or crack on the floor.
However, rust on seat belt mechanism and smelly interior will hint about, if the car’s encountered floods.
Used Car Buying Tips – Technical Inspection
After exterior and interior, next on our list of used car buying tips is a technical inspection. This would help you to resort away from any technical issue with the car. The inspection should start with a drive, and while on it, check for any stalling issues, noise from the brakes while pressing down the pedal, miss-aligned steering, squeaks, and rattles while hitting a bump or a pothole. However, a clutch should be checked for any noise, or if the gearshifts are hard and there’s too much play in the clutch pedal, as all of it means a worn-out clutch. Inspection for any improper welding should also be made, to know of any accident that the car has been a part of.
A basic check over the service record of the vehicle should be done at an authorized service centre alongside a technical inspection through some experienced hands.
The modern cars come shod with an array of electronic sensors and devices to perform a plethora of functions. With so many electronics on board, there’s too much to go for a toss, thus creating a void to investigate if all’s good there. A small inspection for the controls of various parts likes the lights, air-conditioning, and the ICE. However, a keen eye on the displays and gauges should also be helpful to quote a better price for the car. The most important part of the electronic set up in a car are the wires, and they should be checked for any rat-bites or cuts.
Used Car Buying Tips – Price Research and Paper Work
Search for similar listings in the market and compare their price and then quote one for your find. This way it will be an easy way to calculate the value for the car and offer a reasonable bid to the seller.
The used car market in India is full of con men, and the documentation is often doped. So a thorough check should be made for the car’s registration details, chassis number, engine number, and insurance policy. An easy way to do so is to countercheck the aforementioned details with those mentioned in the registration card and on the Vahan portal. Accessing the details of the vehicle on the Vahan portal will also reveal any registered case or challan against the vehicle.
Also, other than the aforementioned used car buying tips, it's also important for you to take tour sweet time to fix the deal. Once you have finalized your purchase, don’t act eager to close the deal. As there are plenty of cars lying around and finding another one won’t be tough. Acting eager for the car would eventually turn up bad for you as the seller would turn his deaf side up for the negotiation. So take your own sweet time to negotiate aggressively and get the car for lesser money than what the seller has quoted earlier.