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Inspecting the Car: Inspecting your Used Car

Finding the perfect used car is only half the battle. To ensure you drive away with a reliable vehicle and avoid costly surprises, a thorough pre-purchase inspection is crucial.

DIY Inspection Checklist: Your Visual Guide

Areas to give attention to when inspecting the car.


Exterior: Body Panels, paint, windows, lights, tires, and wheels.

Interior: Seats, upholstery, dashboard, controls, electronics, and carpets.

Engine: Oil level and condition, air filter, coolant level, hoses, and belts.

Undercarriage: Frame, exhaust system, suspension components, and steering linkage.

Read the Cars Vehicle History Reports:

Car history reports such are invaluable tools for uncovering hidden problems and potential red flags. These reports typically include:

  • Accident history: Records of previous accidents and damage to the vehicle.
  • Maintenance records: Documentation of past repairs and service performed on the car.
  • Odometer readings: Verification of the car’s mileage and detection of potential tampering.
  • Title information: Confirmation of the car’s ownership history and any outstanding liens or salvage titles.

Investing in a car history report from reputable providers like Carfax or AutoCheck before making your final decision can save you from costly repairs and unexpected future issues.

Getting a Professional Inspection: Expert Eyes for Peace of Mind

While a DIY inspection is a valuable first step, hiring a qualified mechanic for a pre-purchase inspection offers a crucial layer of security. Trained professionals can:

  • Identify hidden problems: Their expertise allows them to scrutinize the car’s mechanical components, uncovering issues you might miss.
  • Evaluate the car’s condition: They’ll assess the overall health of the vehicle and provide an expert opinion on its value.
  • Negotiate with confidence: Armed with their findings, you’ll be in a stronger position to negotiate the purchase price.


  • A thorough pre-purchase inspection is essential to avoid hidden problems and costly repairs.
  • Car history reports provide valuable insights into the car’s past.
  • Professional inspections by qualified mechanics offer peace of mind and expert advice.

By following these recommendations, you can approach the used car market with confidence and drive away in a reliable vehicle that will serve you well for years to come.