What To Look Out For With Used Cars

Used Car Buying Guide

Buying a pre-owned vehicle is a great option for many reasons, including affordability and slower depreciation. At Simpson Chevrolet of Garden Grove, we offer a large selection of quality used cars, including Certified Pre-Owned vehicles and vehicles under $10K. But before you start looking, it's important to be prepared so that you can make the right choice. Once you've found a used vehicle that seems like the perfect fit, here are a several things to consider before making the final purchase:

Research & Wait

Waiting is never fun, especially if you need to buy a vehicle as soon as possible. But it's always a good idea to do some research before buying a vehicle you may regret later on. If you know how much the vehicle you're considering should be worth, you'll be better equipped to make an informed decision. Two great resources for estimating the value of a prospective used car are Kelley Blue Book® and Edmunds trade appraisal. These tools can help you determine the value of the vehicle you're considering so that you can be prepared to negotiate the best price.

Determine the Vehicle’s History

It's crucial to find out a used vehicle's history, if possible. Ask the dealer for a CarFax vehicle history report. This will provide you with information regarding accidents, what the vehicle was used for, number of owners, maintenance, repairs, mileage and recalls. This information will also help you determine the vehicle's value.

Look Under the Hood

If possible, have a professional inspect the used vehicle before buying. If not, check for unusual sounds or vibrations, smells or signs of leaking. You don't want to have to spend a fortune fixing issues down the road, and if you sense there's an issue with the engine or transmission, it's time to consider other vehicles.

Inspect the Vehicle's Interior & Exterior

It's important to closely inspect both the exterior and interior when considering any used vehicle. When walking around the vehicle, look for scratches, dents or rust. Inspect the body panels to  make sure they line up evenly, and try all the doors, hood and trunk to make sure they open and close easily. Next, look at the tires and make sure they match and are in good condition. In addition, don't forget to check the lights to make sure they're all in working condition and free from any damage. Inside, look for wear and tear and any stains that might be present. Notice any odors? This might be due to mold, must or mildew caused by a leak or flood damage. Don't forget to check the seats to make sure they adjust properly.

Take a Long Test Drive

And now for one of the most important parts: the test drive. Once you're behind the wheel, try the controls, including heat and A/C, and instruments to see that they are all in working order. Pay attention to how long it takes for the engine to start and make sure the transmission shifts smoothly. While you're driving, pay close attention to how the vehicle handles and how the brakes respond. Try the vehicle on different roads and at various speeds.

Figure out the Costs

Financing your vehicle is the final step. Using the results of the research you've done, you can now negotiate the best price for the vehicle. However, don't forget to factor in the cost of fees, car insurance, as well as annual maintenance and repairs. Don't hesitate to talk to our finance team about your questions or concerns, and find out from your auto insurance company how much insurance will cost for this particular model.

Did you find our Used Car Buying Guide helpful? If you have any questions about the used car buying process or would like to test-drive any of our used vehicles, stop by Simpson Chevrolet of Garden Grove at 10150 Trask Avenue, Garden Grove, CA 92843 or give us a call to set up your appointment. We welcome customers from Santa Ana, Anaheim, Buena Park and Westminster.