4 Things To Avoid When Buying A Used Car

7 August 2015
 Categories: , Articles

So you've decided to hunker down a bit of cash and splurge on a used car. Good for you. Buying a used car can be a rewarding experience. Finding the right used car for you can be great for stroking your ego: you have found an inexpensive vehicle, maybe not that many miles on it, and it looks almost brand new. You found the deal that no one else could find. However, if something looks or seems too good to be true, it probably is. You need to be extra careful when hunting for a used car as fraud abounds. Throughout the course of this article, you'll learn about 4 things to avoid when buying a used car. Don't get suckered in by the sound of something that sounds too good; chances are the car won't be able to live up to the hype.

Electrical Problems

If you've found a used modern car with an annoying electrical problem, be aware that this can be a pricey issue to fix. Today's cars are electrically complex. This is both a blessing and a curse. While at once they can do things and literally shed light on situations that cars of yore could never dream of, the complexity of the engineering involved in the electrical work can mean that it is quite difficult to fix. In fact, many cars with such electrical issues take hours to even diagnose, especially if there is a computer issue involved. Due to the complexity of these issues, many times specialized automobile electricians must fix the problem. Any time you have to deal with a specialist, expect to pay quite a bit of cash correcting the problem.

Poor Body

Unfortunately, there are many body shops that exist in the world that should not be qualified to fix the body of a car. Sadly, many times used car lots will often send these cars into these fly-by-night businesses in order to fix the body of a car. This can create numerous problems, both aesthetic and substantive. For example, you may have misaligned panels, different colors on different parts of the body (which adds an element of "cheapness" to the vehicle), as well as mismatched headlights (one could be clear, and the other could be "foggy", for example). A poor body is also usually a good indication of poor engineering under the hood, as well.

High Mileage

Although many people believe that purchasing a car with high mileage does nothing but work for dropping the price in their favor, this is simply not the case. A high mileage will most likely mean work for you in the near future. Cars with over 100,000 miles on their odometer usually need a litany of work done on them. This might include everything from a paint job on the body to some considerable work done under the hood, like a brand new transmission. Don't trust people that state that the vast majority of that mileage is from "freeway" or "interstate" miles. A mile is a mile.


If you see a car with rust, it's best to just walk away. If you're thinking about purchasing a used vehicle and you know that it has been driven in a "snow state", make sure to check the car's fender, its doors, and its rear wheel wells for signs of rust. Rust is not merely a cosmetic problem, but can be indicative of the fact that the integrity of the vehicle is, in fact, withering away. Extensive rust damage can be quite expensive to repair.

Purchasing a used car is not the simplest thing in the world to do. There are certain things you should check before writing out that check.