Shift stick

Everyone will readily agree that if you want to save money, you’re better off buying a used car than a new one. Used vehicles can be as much as 50 percent less than new vehicles, after all. But it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t come with risks – you have to know what to expect from the process, and you also have to know what you should look for. There are definitely a lot of benefits that come from buying used, but what makes it even more beneficial is how you choose your used vehicle. There are some key strategies and tips you should always remember, so here’s how you can select the best and most ideal used car for your needs. 

Figure out the car’s value on the market 

The first step is to figure out the car’s value on the market. It’s best if you already have a good idea or ballpark estimate of the value of the vehicle you have in mind. You can take advantage of online tools to let you know any car’s value, but make sure you get important details about the vehicle such as its make and model, year, mileage, overall condition, and other options that come with it. The more info you have, the closer you can get to the actual value of the car. 

Do a careful inspection 

For most of us, it’s already a standard – you should carefully check and inspect the vehicle before you sign on the dotted line. The car’s condition is vital if you’re planning to use it for the next few years, and a well-maintained vehicle will always be a top consideration. 

When you inspect it, check if it is comfortable for you to sit in and drive, and inspect the interior (seats, floors, ceiling, doors). When you check the exterior, look out for crappy paint jobs and check out the bumpers and trim. Also look carefully at the tires, the muffler, and the lights. It wouldn’t hurt to smell the car, either – certain smells, such as mildew and cigarette smoke, can be a challenge to remove. But look out for the smell of gas or oil that’s burning, as recommended by used car Utah specialists like Young Automotive, as this is a more serious issue that indicates severe problems with the engine. You should also take a look at the engine; if it’s dirty, the car hasn’t been maintained well. If there is oil on top of the engine, this could be a sign of leaking. Belts and hoses that are cracked or look old can be expensive to fix as well. 

Drive the car and test it well

Test drives are important because it’s not just for you to determine how you like driving the vehicle – it’s also about checking aspects like the amenities of the car (power steering and seats, windows), the sound system, and the air conditioning and heating. You should also check if there are any warning lights while you’re driving the vehicle because this could be a sign that the car needs maintenance. Additionally, make sure you assess how the vehicle handles – test it under different situations such as stopping and going, at high and low speeds, with sudden deceleration or acceleration, and with sudden stops and hard turns. Good luck!