What Research to Do Before Buying a Car: 6 Essential Checks for Peace of Mind

by Rosemarie Hardison
what research to do before buying a car

It is not a simple process to buy a new automobile for oneself since there are many factors that you need to consider, and you cannot spend hours upon hours learning about all of the many features to keep in mind. However, it is essential that you are informed, at least to some extent. In this section, we will outline some straightforward items that will provide you with a more distinct image of what it is that you want and need.

Choose the best dealership

You should research the dealer’s standing before purchasing a pre-owned vehicle from them. Begin by learning how long the dealership has been operational. A consistent length of stay is encouraging. For example, if you want to look for a Subaru Forester for sale in Brisbane, always look for the utmost quality and professionals who can offer great advice regarding every aspect of the car purchase. Look at the dealership’s internet reviews to determine whether it often receives high marks or is criticized for making the same errors. The dealership’s Facebook page, if it has one, and review sites are good places to start looking for feedback.

Finally, you should prioritize the dealership’s service and dependability while shopping for a car. Additional services and inventory selections may also play an important role.

Check documentation

The V5C, commonly known as the registration document, is the most critical document to verify when purchasing a used vehicle. Verify the V5 and license plate number matches the brand and model of the car you want to purchase.

Since it is now possible to verify an automobile’s MOT status and history online, the need to present a current MOT certificate is diminishing. If you’re not aware of it, the MOT test is an annual requirement for any car older than three years. Validity dates may be found on the MOT certificate (or online), and cautions should be noted.

Check the interior and exterior of a car

Look for corrosion, dents, scratches, and any other signs of damage throughout the vehicle. Minor dings and scratches won’t impair the car’s safety or performance, but it’s crucial to spot any big flaws before buying. Paint quality, panel gaps, and mold growth within the cabin are all items you should inspect.

Check that the inside electronics, doors, lights, and turn signals are all in good working order. Get the warning lights checked out before you buy the car if they are on in the instrument cluster.

Check the engine

When looking for a new automobile, it is also important to check out the engine. Make sure that the engine’s fluids, cables, and hoses are all in good condition. The presence of leaks or misaligned fasteners is another warning sign that the engine compartment has been compromised. If you’re not comfortable doing it on your own, bring along someone who is more knowledgeable about automobile engines, such as a friend or a technician.


About 20,000 kilometers are added to the odometer of a typical automobile per year. Divide the number that is shown on the odometer by the age of the vehicle to determine whether or not the automobile in question has high or low mileage. A vehicle with high mileage will have greater wear and tear on the mechanical components than a vehicle with lower mileage.

Tire condition

The tread on all four tires should have the same amount of wear, and the tread depth should be the same. Uneven tread or additional wear on a couple of the tires is often indicative of improper alignment, which may be an indication of problems with the steering, suspension, or chassis of the vehicle. When driving, a vehicle that is not properly aligned will drift to the right or left.

Consider your budget

When looking for an automobile, one of the most crucial considerations is cost. We’d all prefer a luxury car with the best comfort and performance features, but we have to be practical about our budget. The monthly payments on a used automobile may be far more manageable than those on a new car, and you can still receive the car of your dreams.

A used automobile may be in almost showroom condition yet still be priced lower than a brand-new vehicle due to the fact that it has already been owned. Be sure that the monthly payments on the automobile don’t put you in a struggling position. Choose a less costly model that has the same or comparable features as your top pick.

Be mindful of vehicle durability

Certain makes of automobiles are notorious for being particularly prone to breakdowns. For off-road vehicles, whose chassis will often be jarred by rough terrain, durability is of paramount importance. If you often replace your vehicle, you may not care about how long it lasts. However, if you want to keep your automobile for a long time, durability should be your first concern.

A more long-lasting car may cost more than a less sturdy alternative, but you’ll definitely get your money’s worth out of it in the long run. It will need less regular maintenance and repairs, and it will last for years to come.

Take a test drive

Before visiting a dealership, you should have a clear idea of what you’re looking for. And be wary of their attempts to upsell you. Even if the shop doesn’t have your ideal vehicle in stock but does have one that is quite similar but more expensive, thanks to a fancy new stereo and leather upholstery, you shouldn’t buy it.

Choose a path that will give you a taste of a variety of driving situations. A car’s handling on the highway will be different from its handling in the city. Take note of everything that looks out of the ordinary. Is there a rattling noise whenever a bump is hit? Are there any strange sounds going on? You can use this information to move forward.

In summary

Buying a vehicle is a major investment, and there are many things to think about before making a purchase. Keep in mind that everyone has different requirements for a vehicle and that one person’s dream automobile may be completely inadequate for another. Most individuals base their decision on their financial situation, so think about how much money you’ll need to spend on gas and repairs before making a final choice.

Related Posts