Did you know that the US saw over 17 million cars sold in 2016? But, what happens when these cars are sold on? Are things like the rear windows still safe? You always want to be thorough when it comes to buying a used car. Learn what red flags to look out for when you’re considering a buy!
It Has a Bad Title
Whenever you buy a used car, ask to see the title. The title of a vehicle is where you will find out if it is branded or not.
Branded cars are one’s which will have had a problem previously. They may have a brand such as scrap or salvage. If this is the case, you may wish to consider another car.
Branded cars are more complicated to obtain. You can still buy them, but financing may not be an option. If the title is bad and sellers won’t finance it, take this as a sign not to get the car.
It’s Covered In Rust
Most of us will have seen a rust bucket driving on the roads. These are not cars you should wish to buy.
Some cars may only have a small amount of rust on them. The rust could be out of apparent sight, so make sure you check the car over thoroughly.
Check places such as under the car or around the wheels. Cars with a lot of rust will have a weakened structure. Safety should be your main thought when buying a new car.
Does your current car have rust patches? Follow this link to learn how to remove it.
Front and Rear Window
Check over the windows of the car. Your windows will be another aspect of safety.
Are there any chips or cracks which will weaken their structure? If you find damage, it could be costly to replace windows.
Is the rear window damaged or obstructed? If you find that it is a struggle to see through the rear window, your driving safety may decline.
Do the door windows wind down all the way? If a car has hit in the side, it may cause the window not to wind down all the way.
It Has Bad Oil
Oil is like the blood of the car. If you find a used car with lousy oil, this may negatively affect the rest of it.
Check the oil when you inspect the car. If it looks dark or seems quite gooey, then this is a red flag. Gooey oil will damage the engine.
The used car may run now, but it may already be too late if the oil is bad. The car’s engine may have become damaged, which will need replacing.
It Looks Like It Has Been in an Accident
Accidents happen, It’s part of life. But, if the used car looks like it’s in bad shape, then the structure will be in bad condition.
Check over the whole of the car to see if any damage has been poorly fixed. Or, even worse, if the current owner has tried to cover it up in order to sell.
You should never buy a car if you feel you would be unsafe driving it. Skip past this red flag of a vehicle if you find it.
There’s a Strange Smell Inside
Now you have checked the exterior, let’s have a look inside. When you sit in the car and close the door, do you get a strange smell coming from somewhere? If you are getting a mildew smell, this could be a sign of hidden water damage.
The mildew smell could have been caused by wet leaves remaining in the car for too long, which isn’t necessarily bad. But, it could have been caused by severe water damage, such as the vehicle was flooded at some point.
If you smell mildew, don’t risk buying the car. If it smells of other things, that could just be the previous owner.
There’s Visible Water Damage
Check the interior of the car for any signs of water damage. You may notice it in such areas as under the seats or in the glove box.
If you find such signs, this will be a red flag like the mildew smell. If you are still unsure, you can use the car’s VIN to check the car’s flood damage history.
Driving It Makes a Weird Sound
Take the car for a test drive. If the owner refuses to let you, that’s a huge red flag. But, if you are able to, then listen out for what noises the car makes.
Is there a strange knocking when you accelerate? This could be coming from the engine.
If an engine starts knocking, it will need mending. To mend such a problem could end up costing more than what the price of the car is.
The Transmission Isn’t Quite Right
As you are driving along, how does it feel to change gears? If you find it a struggle to go from one gear to the other, turn back around and walk away.
It could be a simple solution to changing the transmission fluid. But, if the fluid is OK, then it’s the entire gearbox that is broken.
Replacing or repairing is similar to an engine. It could cost you a lot to fix.
Check out the rearview mirror as you drive. Can you see a cloud of black fumes following you?
Black fumes could be a sign of excessive fuel burning. The number of problems this could be linked to is too large to not be a red flag.
To be extra safe, have a friend drive behind you. They will be able to see the black fumes far clearer than you might.
Used Cars Arent All Bad
Now you know what to look out for when buying a used car. Make sure you check over everything before buying.
Look over the rear windows. Check the oil. Take it for a test drive.
Don’t forget to use our services to check your potential new car’s VIN or license plate. Or, check out what cars we have for sale now.