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What to Check When Buying a Second-Hand Car

When it comes to purchasing cars, the vast majority of us look for second-hand options. While new cars are highly desirable, they’re also largely out of reach for the average household budget. By buying a used vehicle (whether you do so through a dealer or a car sales website like Boost Cruising), you can save thousands and still get a car that is in top condition and will last you for years to come. To help you make the right choice when automotive shopping, here are three features you should be looking for when buying your next car.

1. Reliability – Low Kilometres 

It’s probably one of the most important things to do when buying a second-hand vehicle: check how many kilometres it’s done. Why? More kilometres equals more wear and tear, which means bigger repair bills for you. The older a car gets and the more driving it does, the more parts will start to wear and the more likely it is that big ticket items like automatic transmissions or clutches will need to be replaced. In some cases, the repair bill for heavily driven cars can cost the new owner more than what they paid for the vehicle. Don’t get trapped in this situation; set yourself a limit for the maximum kilometres you’re willing to settle for and only inspect or consider vehicles that have done under that distance.

2. Safety – Previous Accidents 

One thing that can easily be hidden by sellers is the vehicle’s history, specifically road accidents. While crash damage can be fixed by panel beaters, the impact on the main sub-frame of a car can never be undone. Always make sure you take the car for a decent drive and, if possible, take if for a ride on the freeway. During the test drive, try short bursts of rapid acceleration and deceleration as this will help you to determine if the car is excessively pulling in one direction or another. This can be an indication of previous and significant vehicle damage. Also be sure to check that all doors, the boot and bonnet open and close easily and smoothly. If a car has been in a major crash, this can irreversibly and negatively affect the way it handles and could pose a risk to your safety, particularly as the vehicle ages.

3. Affordability – Fuel Consumption 

The old saying goes: “the only things certain in life are death and taxes”. This should be updated to include fuel prices, as global demand for fossil fuels increases while supplies of this limited natural resource decrease. To help future-proof yourself as much as possible, do some research on vehicle fuel consumption and limit your search of used car search to makes and models that perform well in this category.

There are so many factors to think about when you’re buying a car; however, many of these are likely to be cosmetic and relatively unimportant. When it comes down to it, there are really only a handful of important features to consider when buying your next car. The three categories listed here are a solid starting point you should incorporate into the search and decision-making process you use while shopping around.


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