The choice of buying a used car must always be particularly pondered and in most cases it is influenced by considerable factors. Being able to find the right balance between the budget available and the characteristics of the vehicle is often a complicated operation, but knowing how to properly deal with the seller can play to your advantage to conclude buying a used car and make a real deal.
As a car ages, it can manifest more or less serious problems, depending also on the way it has lived. It is not said that problems emerge at first sight: for this reason, it is important to be able to catch the symptoms of incipient problems. It is not necessary to be an expert, although specific expertise obviously allows you to make more detailed diagnoses. All it takes is a little attention and following our advice. The careful examination of the car is always useful, but it is essential in case you buy it from a private person, who, unlike dealers and salon owners, is not obliged to issue a guarantee of conformity. In addition, usually the cars offered for sale directly from the owners are not subjected to aesthetic and mechanical reconditioning treatments, so they are more “sincere” in showing their condition. For this reason, a car that presents itself to the examination clean inside and out, even in the details, with tires in good condition and of correct size and with well-documented maintenance, almost certainly has also been driven with care.
HOW TO EXAMINE THE CAR
Even an apparently well-kept car could still hide some defects, but it is certainly a better basis than an obviously neglected specimen, especially with regard to periodic maintenance, i.e. those checks that are of fundamental importance on modern cars, especially in diesel and supercharged gasoline. The turbocharger, in fact, can hardly stand deferred oil changes and lubricants of a quality that does not correspond to the prescriptions, therefore it is good to scrupulously examine the invoices of the coupons (do not be satisfied with the stamps on the service booklet, easily falsifiable), also in order to trace the actual mileage of the car. In this regard, it should be remembered that it is almost always possible to trace the maintenance operations carried out through the official service network workshops. In the absence of this, there are various ways to assess the mileage of a car: the simplest is to examine the state of the steering wheel rim.
In addition to the examination of the documents (including the registration certificate and the ownership certificate), a thorough look at the car is useful to highlight the state of health and the presence of any body repairs, which may be due to trivial accidents or more serious accidents. Even without dedicated tools, it is almost always possible to identify the work of the coachbuilder from details, such as traces of paint on seals and profiles adjacent to repaired parts, or logos and stickers that are not perfectly aligned. A deformed rear license plate is also always the sign of an impact, which may be due to a clumsy reversal or a more violent collision.
A test drive, finally, is very useful to assess the functionality of the main organs of the car. An owner who is sure of the state of his car will have no difficulty in granting it, at least with him at the wheel. And even as a passenger, with a little attention it is possible to detect the symptoms of various malfunctions, such as abnormal engine noise when cold, suspension or abrupt engagement of the automatic transmission. During the test drive attention should be paid to any noise when the engine is cold, a sign of wear and tear that is expensive to repair, to the beating of the suspension on uneven ground (arms and ball joints to be replaced), to the whistling of the turbo and drifts to one side under braking. If the clutch slips when passing from second to fifth gear and accelerating hard it is necessary to change it, while with the automatic transmission there should be no jerking in the clutches.
WHERE TO BUY USED CAR
From a dealer
A first place where you can buy a used car and close a deal is undoubtedly the dealership. The squares of the dealers are usually populated by numerous used cars waiting to find a buyer, but it is good to know that in this case during the negotiations you will find yourself in front of an expert in the art of selling.
For this reason, it is always a good idea to do some research online to find out the market price of the used car you intend to buy and, once you have gone to the dealer, start a negotiation to try to get the price down.
If the dealer should be inflexible on the cost of the car, you can try to include in the final price of new accessories such as tires so that you have a set of tires still intact and amortize the cost of replacement over time.
Remember then that buying a used car from a dealer obliges the seller to guarantee the car for one year unless it still enjoys the two-year warranty valid for new cars.
Finally, if you don’t manage to close a deal for the purchase of a used car, don’t give up and go to another dealership where you will surely find the car of your dreams at the desired price.
Buy a used car from a private person
Not only the dealerships are the places where you can buy a used car and make a real bargain, but you can also buy the car of your dreams from a private person.
On the web and on paper magazines there are thousands of ads of private cars for sale, often with very interesting prices, but before concluding the negotiation it is a good rule to inspect carefully the vehicle.
In addition to checking the condition of the bodywork and the interior, which must not present imperfections, it is essential to verify the proper functioning of the mechanics. If, in spite of our advice, you still do not feel sure about this, it is advisable to be accompanied by a mechanic who can check the state of the car and also carry out a road test so as to ascertain any malfunctions that could affect the final price.
If it will be necessary to carry out mechanical interventions, there are two ways to do it: to make the seller lower the original asking price or to oblige him to proceed to the repair at his own expenses before the sale.
Unlike cars sold by the dealer, buying a used car from a private party does not oblige the seller to the annual warranty. Even in this case, however, depending on the age of the car you can find offers of cars that still enjoy the original warranty of the House.
Where to find cheap and convenient used cars
As we have seen above, both on the web and in print magazines you can find thousands of ads for used cars at a bargain price.
Our suggestion is to consult sites, which offer a wide choice thanks to the numerous filters that allow you to quickly find the ideal car; moreover, the numerous ads present are accompanied by numerous photos that describe in detail all the conditions of the used car.
Among the thousands of ads you will surely find the car of your dreams and then it will be enough to follow the advice we have provided above to buy a used car and make a real deal.
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