No one likes to get ripped off, especially when purchasing a used car. However, there are a few key things to keep in mind when used cars in montclair, whether the vehicle is new or pre-owned, to avoid being taken advantage of.
Just a note, this article is specifically about used cars since they’re more likely to have been abused or not adequately maintained than a new car. So with that in mind, let’s get started!
1. Kick the tires, literally
Yes, it’s a bit of an old cliché, but there’s a reason this saying exists – because it’s true! Checking the condition of the tires is one of the most important things you can do when inspecting a used car.
If the tires are bald, unevenly worn, or visible damage, that’s a red flag that the car has not been properly maintained. This could lead to expensive repairs down the road, so avoiding such a vehicle is best.
2. Check under the hood
Again, everyone knows to do this, but few take the time to do it. Popping the hood and looking at the engine, radiator, hoses, and other components can tell you a lot about a car.
If the engine is dirty or there is any visible damage, that’s a sign that the car has not been well-cared for. The same goes for the radiator and hoses – if they’re cracked or leaking, that’s another red flag.
3. Take it for a spin
Of course, you can’t know how a car handles and drives until you take it out for a spin. Nevertheless, this is an important step in the process, so don’t skip it!
Pay attention to how the car feels when you’re driving it. Does it shake or vibrate? Are the brakes squeaking? Does the steering feel loose? These are all signs that something is wrong with the car, and you should move on to another vehicle.
4. Does the car stink?
Yes, this is another odd one, but bear with us. People often try to cover up the smell of cigarette smoke or other foul odors with air fresheners.
If you notice an overwhelming smell of air freshener when you first get in the car, that’s a sign that someone is trying to cover something up. It could just be tobacco smoke, or it could be something worse.
5. Check underneath the car for rust
You’ll need to slide under the car for this one, so it’s best to have a friend help you out. Once you’re underneath, look at the frame’s condition and suspension.
Rust is bad news for a car, as it indicates that the metal is beginning to degrade. Unfortunately, this can lead to all sorts of problems down the road, so it’s best to check now and avoid a potential headache later.
Don’t get swindled out of your hard-earned money
Nothing is worse than getting taken to the cleaners when buying a used car – but it doesn’t have to be that way. You don’t need to be a mechanic to spot a lemon; you just need to know what to look for.
These tips are easy to do and only take a few minutes. But by taking the time to do them, you can avoid being swindled out of your money and ending up with a car that’s nothing but trouble.