5 Factors to Consider Before Buying a Used Car
Your car VIN is a 17-character long identification number that records events in the course of your car’s life. The first number shows where the vehicle was built while the second and third identify the manufacturer. It is useful to run a vehicle history lookup before buying a used automobile. This check can be used to verify mileage, odometer recalls, service history, accidents, as well as theft and recovery cases.
Here are some of the critical aspects to consider before buying a used car.
1. Vehicle Recalls
When buying a used car, you want to ensure that it does not have any manufacturer issues. Certain jurisdictions in the United States prohibit selling an automobile with a recall that still requires repairs. However, you can always run an online VIN lookup to see if it has had any issues.
A recall does not necessarily mean the car is faulty. Instead, it shows the manufacturer identified the defect and came up with a fix for the same. The problem comes when the seller does not disclose that fact during the negotiations. The dealer needs to fix the car for you if there is a recall.
2. Service History
A car needs servicing every six to 12 months to keep it running efficiently. Manufacturers often create a maintenance schedule that determines when parts require tune-ups. Your vehicle history report can give you a clue on how well the owner cared for the automobile.
However, not all car owners will have their maintenance work captured in the vehicle history. Some may choose to service the automobile without recording the repairs. In such cases, you can consult the owner and inquire about the frequency of the car service. You can also request that they provide additional records from the garage where the repairs were conducted.
3. Impound and Arrest
The vehicle history lookup also has information about impounds and towing. When the car is taken to the impound lot, an officer will record the incidence and allow access to detectives.
Sometimes vehicles sustain damages while they are at the impound lot. They can get dents or have paint peeling off. Frequent towing may also damage the car’s transmission. You should, therefore, be careful when purchasing a car with such a history.
Mileage is a critical aspect that you may overlook when buying a used car. Many online dealers are not willing to volunteer the mileage stats as part of their free service. Luckily, you can assess the service history and mileage using a VIN check before completing the transaction.
As the buyer, always evaluate the mileage against the age of the car. This will give you a rough idea of how much wear and tear the car has endured.
Some Vehicle history lookup services can provide information on whether the model is in impeccable condition. The VIN search collects data and puts it together for the buyer. You can use it to review the reliability reports and the state of the exterior. You don’t want to buy a lemon.
Buying a used car can be risky if you have no way of finding out its condition from reliable records. A vehicle lookup is one of the best ways to determine if the car is worth buying as there are several factors of the history that you should not ignore. Be sure to use a service that provides comprehensive data on the model you want to purchase.