3 Vital Parts of Used Cars You Should Check Before Making a Purchase

Just because you’re shopping for a used car doesn’t mean you wouldn’t find a good buy. In fact, a lot of used cars in Portland are still in very good condition. All you have to do is to inspect properly to ensure that the vehicle you’re buying is still in good condition.

When checking a used car, there are three important parts you shouldn’t forget to inspect.


Check Under the Hood

Never buy a vehicle without checking what’s under the hood because it’s one of the parts that are most vulnerable to floods. Using a dipstick, check liquid levels and the oil consistency. If you see black oil, water in oil, or low liquid levels, walk away. Signs of mold and moisture issues in the filter or air cleaner can indicate that the car has been flooded, so make sure to take a look at those. You should also pay attention to the tube seals, timing belt, battery, and brake fluid reservoir.

The Exterior

The body of the car can say a lot about its history. Mismatched paint, scratches, dents, and uneven parts indicate a significant collision, so ensure that you look out for these when checking the exterior. Other equipment like side mirrors, wheels, head and rear lamps, and wipers should also be in good condition. Once you spot a problem, don’t hesitate to ask the dealer for the vehicle’s service records.

The Interior

Use your nose when checking a used car’s interior. A pungent smell could mean that the car has been flooded and mold has already built up inside. You can also turn up the seats to see signs of moisture problems.

Another thing to do is test all components such as door locks, window controls, air conditioning, music player, LCD monitor, and others. Don’t forget to determine its mileage as well. You can do this by evaluating the car’s wear and tear and checking what’s on the odometer. See if the figure makes sense depending on the car’s overall condition.

After checking all these vital parts, you may want to end the inspection by test driving the car. Reliable used cars dealerships will let you do this to allow you to have a feel of driving it. This way, you can find out whether it matches your driving style and preferences.


Inspecting a used car, consumerreports.org

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