What you need to know before buying used cars

So, you’ve been looking for a car and you found your dream car. It is used, but the price for it is well worth it.

You really want to buy it and you have the money ready or maybe you have a used car finance agreement. Wait! Stop! There are a few things you need to know first before you decide on buying used cars.

buying used carsDon’t go solo

You shouldn’t go view a car on your own. You will not be able to check everything necessary if you are on your own. That extra pair of eyes can help you spot any scratches or signs that you may miss on your own.

Take a friend or family member and get them to sit in the car and test the lights and indicator. This allows you to walk around the car checking those lights work. You can also get them to rev the engine hard and you check if any black or blue smoke comes out of the exhaust. If it does then that car is burning too much oil. If you need help, the team at Rix Motors can help you find great used cars.”

Pick a dry day

Weather may seem like an odd thing to bring into this, but bear with me. When owners know someone is coming to view their car, they usually get them cleaned and polished to ensure they look good. If it then rains, the raindrops will sit lovingly on top of the polish. They also give good cover for scratches. Best to go on a dry day to spot all the scratches.

That is not to say that rain doesn’t have its uses. It is good for checking windscreen wipers, seals and if you take the car for a test drive, the car’s level of grip. Best to go and check the car a few times to see it and drive it in the wet and the dry.

Does it have a spare tyre?

When buying used cars, you will obviously check the tread on the main tyres to ensure they are useable and legal. But also, ensure you check the spare tyre as well. If you don’t you could end up with a bald or damaged spare, which would require you to purchase a new one, costing you more money. They can usually be found in the boot of the car. Also, check that the car comes with the equipment to change that spare tyre, including a jack, wrench and additional tools.

Air-con and heating

The weather in Britain is pretty fickle. One moment it can be dry then it is wet. It can be warm and then go cold. We are for the most part used to it, but we also prepare for it. To be prepared for either winter or summer, your car needs to have a working air-conditioning system and heating system. Get in the car and blast them on to ensure they both work effectively.

Does it lock?

When you view the used car, check all the locks work. No point in buying a new car that doesn’t lock and ends up being stolen is there? If it has an immobiliser locking system, check it works with both a car fob and the key.


Cup holders! Many of us make our own flasks of coffee or teas or we drop into the nearest Costa or Starbucks and get ourselves a takeaway one. It is a horrible moment when you climb into your car and realise that you have no place to place the cup of scalding hot liquid. Make sure that the car has cup holders otherwise you will regret it.

These checks go for whether you are buying the used cars from a private individual or a dealership. If you are interested in getting a used car as the finance costs are usually cheaper than buying one new, then check out these cheap car finance deals.

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