What to Look for When Buying a Second-Hand Car

If you have ever bought a used car, you will already know that there are risks involved, and the older the vehicle, the greater the risk of ending up with a car that is not worth the asking price. In order to help you minimise the risk of this occurring, here are a few important things to look for when buying a used car.

  • Checking the Vehicle’s History – Every car has a service history, as the garage that carries out the service enters the details in the rear section of the owner’s manual, which always accompanies the car throughout its life. A car that has a full service history (FSH) is worth more than a model of similar condition that does not have a full service history, plus if the car has FSH, you know it has been looked after.
  • Warranty – Avoid any ‘sold as seen’ arrangements when buying a used car, as you are not protected should the car suddenly develop a serious problem, which is yet another reason to go to a registered car dealership, as they always issue a warranty on every used car they sell. There are, for example, second hand cars in Canberra from an established car dealership, and they offer a very fair warranty on all their used vehicles.
  • The Bodywork – It is important to inspect the car bodywork thoroughly, making sure to look under the car and also under the wheel arches, where rust could be found. It is possible that a car that has been in a serious accident could be repaired, and to the untrained eye, there might not be any apparent signs of that.
  • Overall Condition – There are several standards regarding the condition of a used car, ranging from ‘poor’ to ‘pristine’ and the condition of the car obviously affects the sale price. Check the upholstery carefully, looking for tears, holes and stains and should you find even a minor flaw, mention it to the dealer, plus have a good look under the car when it is ramped up, specifically looking for signs of rust.
  • The Feel of the Car – Obviously, you will test drive the car, which gives you a chance to get a feel of how the car responds. The steering, for example, should be responsive, the brakes should perform well, plus testing the car for acceleration is also a must, although you will need to choose the road carefully if you plan on putting your foot to the floor.

Buying from a respected dealer means that you are protected and you can be sure that the car has been thoroughly inspected and any issues resolved.

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