Things to Look for When Purchasing a Used Car

June 19th, 2015 by

So you’ve decided to purchase a preowned vehicle, but you’re a little apprehensive based on your friends’ and family’s horror stories.

While Dan Cummins Chevrolet will never force a bad used car on you, there are still some things you should be vigilant for, regardless of where you purchase the car. Let’s take a look at some important things to keep in mind…

How the Car Drives


I’ve only purchased one used car, but during my search, I had at least ten candidates. How did I possibly narrow down that list? I crossed off every car that I couldn’t test drive.

Test driving is an accepted part of the car-buying process, so it’s surprising that used-car buyers neglect to give their potential buy a drive around the block. Not only will you get an actual feel for how the car runs, but you’ll also be able to identify any potential issues.

How the Car Looks


This doesn’t mean giving a quick peak at the exterior and interior. This means giving a thorough lookover of every nook and cranny in your prospective purchase. When it comes to Lexington, KY used cars, taking the time to haggle over the car’s price, identify a scratch on the passenger door or a burn mark on the back seat could save you some cash.

Some dealers may try to sell you a car under the notion that it has never been damaged. An easy way to identify whether the vehicle has had body damage is by checking the car’s saddle, which connects the front fenders and holds the radiator in place. If they’re bolted, you’re all set. If they’re welded or scratched, that means parts of the body have been replaced.

How the Engine and Tires Looks


Don’t stop there. Make sure you open the hood and check out the engine, as rusted parts could indicate that the vehicle will inevitably run into some problems. If possible, give an additional look under the car, as this could identify any leaks or unibody damage.

Make sure you do the same thing with the trunk, assuring that there’s no rust, water, or holes. Finally, give a look at the tires. If they look similarly worn, that indicates that they’re in good use. If you notice that the tires are misaligned, you may want to continue your search elsewhere.


Unless a particular issue completely turns you off from purchasing that respective vehicle, make sure to write down any odd details you come across. Even it seems minor, there could be a more sinister issue hiding under the surface. Besides a notepad, a camera is a good accessory to bring along when shopping for used cars. Not only can you use the car’s minor issues as a tactic for negotiating, but you can also prevent yourself from getting hustled if the car later proves to be a dud.

If you have any questions regarding used cars, head down to Dan Cummins Dealership today!