Brand new cars are tempting but often involve a massive financial investment that we may not be extremely comfortable with. Thankfully, it is a common practice for driver enthusiasts to purchase their cars second hand. There are a wide range of dedicated places and online platforms where used cars can be bought.

Before proceeding with the purchase and payment of your selected second-hand car, it could be useful to familiarize yourself with the most common areas to observe when analyzing the pros and cons of the vehicle. Especially if you are buying a car from a car dealership that specializes in used cars, the vehicle may seem in perfect condition but this may be a far cry from reality.

Second Hand Car

Here are a few pointers on areas to investigate when deciding on a used car to purchase!

General Overview – The Outside

Once you have arranged a viewing for your car-to-be, begin by making a general overview of the automobile and examine its external parts. Check the tires by giving them a gentle kick to see how stable they are, check if they are original or have been replaced with alternative ones. What is the car’s overall vision? Can you spot any exterior scratches or damages? Look for any panel gaps, which may be a result of previous car crashes.

It’s also advisable to observe the car’s glass to see whether there are any existing cracks, which may cause trouble.
Tip: It’s always a good idea to view the vehicle in bright daylight to avoid missing any obvious exterior issues.


Once you are in the car, the interior upholstery will almost immediately make an impression. If it is a good one then you’ve most likely chosen a car that has been well cared for. If you notice stains or unpleasant smells this does not necessarily mean the car is not worth the purchase but it might be useful to keep an eye open for other areas where it has not been maintained well. Check whether all the electrics work such as the air conditioning, if any, the lights, seat heaters, any mirror switches or other extras.

Vehicle History

Knowing the history of your future car is crucial as it will give you an overview of any potential additional costs associated with fixing issues that may arise after a certain time period. Ask the current car owner of any previous difficulties he may have faced with the vehicle. It would be ideal if they can provide you with information on the repair history of the car, when it last had its full car check and how often it has been used. Keep in mind that the mileage showing on the car board may be manipulated by professionals so it’s worth asking a few additional questions to determine whether you are receiving accurate information.

Previous Accidents

Check whether the vehicle has been in accidents or whether it has been crashed before. Ask about the damage that the accidents have caused to the vehicle and the cost of repair. This way, you can get insight on how expensive the car parts for the specific model are if you haven’t done any previous research. Furthermore, you will get an orientation on which areas of the vehicle have already suffered or could potentially cause difficulties in the future.

Test Drive

Whether you are considering making your purchase from a car dealership of a previous owner, it is extremely important to ask for a test drive. Only after starting the car and putting your foot on the pedal will you be able to gain a realistic idea of what the vehicle feels like and how it works. It is key that you personally have the chance to drive the car before making a decision as previous owners or experts may be familiar enough with the car to prevent you from feeling or witnessing any existing issues.

These are just a few pointers on the most important areas to observe when selecting a second hand car for purchase. Don’t forget to check if all the necessary documentation is existent and available. Owning a car brings numerous perks such as increased mobility, flexibility, and freedom to travel or even the ability to receive an easy auto title loan when in need of immediate cash. Make sure you make the best choice and select a second-hand car that will be worth it!

Image by Ian Fuller


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