Cheat sheet on how to check the car before buying it: save for the future

Шпаргалка о том, как проверить машину перед покупкой: сохраните на будущее

Buying second-hand car — it is not the simplest, in many ways even risky, from a financial point of view — and costly, says lifter.

Hopefully, the tips that we give you in this article will help to reduce all risks to a minimum and to choose the best car possible.

Before buying a used car, you should check the following:

  • the presence of the original technical passport;
  • if the car previously in an accident;
  • not repainted if the car;
  • no modifications (tuning) of electric, fuel, suspension, steering and brake systems.

If the survey and inspection there is any doubt at least one of these questions, you should resolve to move to the next car, not escuchas suitable price since the car market is being flooded with offers and be sure to find one you want.

After receiving satisfactory answers to these questions you can move on to a detailed inspection of the car.

A detailed examination is best done with a true companion who knows how to check the car before buying so as not to miss during the inspection important points. You should also arm themselves with a notebook to record all observed deficiencies. They will be needed later to conduct an objective assessment of the condition of the car and determine its real market value.

An important caveat: the inspection should be a Sunny day in bright light, avoiding suggestions about the checks inside the boxes, garages, showrooms.

The hood.

Should be several times to open and close the hood, checking the reliability of the castle and at the same time viewing it from the inside for violations of the paintwork and rust. In the salon you should check the action of the lever that opens the bonnet.

Engine compartment.

Here, we recommend the following inspection procedure:

  • Visually assess the condition of all components, paying attention to the presence of drips of oil, fuel, special fluids. On a dirty engine and they are clearly noticeable on a clean engine you need to carry out a paper at all sealing areas after it run at high speeds. The place drips need to be studied more closely to find the cause.
  • Check the level and consistency of motor oil and special fluids. They should remain homogeneous without impurities and suspension.
  • Inspect the piping and wiring. No cracks, marks breakdown, sharp bends — a sign of health. If there are new details, it is necessary to find out the reason for replacing the old.
  • Start the engine, paying attention to throttle response, no extraneous sounds at work.
  • Inspect the radiator engine and air conditioner faulty cells and the absence of foreign objects. Must be all sorts of deformation of the ribs. Precise causes of dents in them.
  • Look at the condition of the torque struts. Mud flaps and the Cup should not hang out.


  • On all sides check the outside body, assessing the uniformity and monotony of painting. The presence of zones where the tone is different in shades or gloss, talking about the second painting, which can occur due to repair after an accident or significant corrosion. To identify the paint and putty of the individual parts of the body, use a feeler gauge.
  • If cars with mileage body looks perfectly smooth, without rough edges, small chips, scratches, it should be alerted. Perhaps the technical condition of the car is unimportant, she had been in an accident and was completely repainted.
  • In any case, it is a signal that in the future you will be able to find any unwanted hidden defects. There is nothing worse than not knowing, so you should choose another car with a more open and known history of use. If the seller himself has no information about the condition and history of the machine, the more you should not buy a car from that owner.
  • Write down in a notebook all the damage to the paint, as they must be processed and painted to prevent further corrosion.
  • Note the profile of the car front and back with closed doors. Doors must not protrude or be recessed much. Door gaps, the gaps between the bonnet, boot door and the body are kept still the same around the perimeter. If there are obvious deviations, it is indicative of the changed geometry of the body that is the result of a strong blow in the accident. This car has bad handling, so the purchase should be abandoned.
  • In the same way, check the liftgate.
  • Opening the door, look at the sills, sealing gum, the factory welds. If it was done post-accident repair, the seam will be different in shape or size from the factory. Check the extra washers in the door hinges that say about the attempt to compensate the door sagging that occurs when it is replaced.
  • Carry out a single inspection of each door, checking the keys, locks, handles, window regulators, mirror adjustment. Pay attention to the reliable fastening of the panels, no gaps. If the panels have a gap, it says that it was dismantled and the damaged plastic clips.
  • When checking the operation of the locks is useful to look at the response part. If a door or the lock was changed, then there will inevitably remain traces of the position control of the castle. You should find out the reasons for these actions.
  • Opening and closing each door several times, check the ease and completeness of setting of the lock without jamming. If the door opens or closes hard with a strong cotton, then find out why. She may be working or deformation of the mounts, the repair of which will require significant expenditures.
  • When inspecting the roof you should pay attention to possible traces of its replacement, expressed in difference of tone painting, the violation of its geometry, damage to the weirs.
  • Check out how to open and close the hatch and the gas cap.


  • The glass surface must be free of chips, cracks, scratches. Mount the headlight is hard without rattling. Glass with a large number of scratches are subject to early replacement, as strongly put the brightness of the device. Depending on the brand of machine replacement glass can result in a round sum.
  • Interior lighting and illumination of devices is checked when the ignition is switched on. Adjust the brightness of illumination should be smooth and continuous.


  • Alternately guide the examination of both bumpers on the reliability of the suspension, the presence of chips, cracks, breaches of paintwork, traces of repair. Fit of the bumper must be smooth and tight with no large gaps. Fog light emitters and sensors must have a reliable mount.
  • Next, examine the condition of the mudguards on their integrity.
  • You should check, as a fixed threshold pads, moldings and other exterior elements.


  • The disks should pay attention to dents and ellipsoidal deformation. If they are, then certainly they impact on the work and condition of suspension components that can be detected only when the control away to the landfill.
  • Check the air pressure in the tires must match on all or in pairs on front and rear wheels.
  • Measure the tread wear of a tire according to the available indicators or a ruler. Rarely, when a used car has new tires. It is therefore important that the rubber could move to the moment when they change for the season.


  • Inspect glass: they should be free of cracks, chips, thick mesh of small scratches. The operation of heaters of glasses, you can check the heating is turned on and touch the glass after some time.
  • The operation of the washers and janitors is the simultaneous inclusion of them in different modes. We should pay attention to what trail reserves the brush wiper. If you have large gaps you should make a conclusion about necessity of replacement gum.
  • If the headlights are equipped with wipers and washer, you should check their work.
  • Special attention should be paid to the window seals. If they are new or have a sealant, so the glass on the door was changed. Need to find out why.


  • The thresholds in the doorway of the cabin should not be rotten. Tapping with a metal object (tire iron) on the sills and underbody, determine the degree of wear and tear. If the sound is ringing, means the metal is in good condition.
  • Inspect the seat should removing the covers. It verifies the integrity of the adjustments, backrest angle and longitudinal position of the seat. Should be no backlash in the position of the back. Chair should move freely on the slide and can be locked in the selected position.
  • Check for a faulty heated seat.
  • Check the back shelf for integrity, the lack of extra holes and loose.
  • Inspection of the ceiling is to test the condition of skin health the top of loops or handles, performance, General lighting, fixtures, and fixing the position of the sun visor. The top hatch should open smoothly. It needs to be free of damage, cracks, chips. Seal without deformation and impulses.
  • Check up reliability of fastening of the instrument panel. She has to be dead. Try how to open and close the glove box door on the latch and lock.
  • Test all the seat belts. Check for damage, condition of locks, the ease and length when you pull the lock with a sharp pull.

Luggage compartment.

  • Inspect the door as he inspected the other doors and hood.
  • You should carefully inspect the place for the spare wheel to the presence of corrosion, welding, or painting, pushing the covering of the Luggage compartment.
  • Check the trunk light.
  • Opening and closing a few times the tailgate, check the accuracy and reliability of the operation of the lock and internal drive.


  • Check out how the devices and pointers on the instrument panel for their testimony. Handles deflectors should move without jamming and Zapadni, surely to be fixed in any position. The panels should be smooth without defects.
  • Check proper operation of all optical devices: alarm, switching the headlamp beam, turn signal, headlights, reverse, fog lamps.
  • The operation of the Central lock is checked against the definition of trigger locks and blinking devices.
  • When turning the steering wheel should trigger the anti-theft steering lock.
  • When closing the doors should illuminate the indicator belt.
  • You should run the engine and check the operation of other instruments — tachometer, temperature and oil pressure, etc. in accordance with the instruction manual.

Heating and air conditioning.

You should close doors and Windows. Next:

  • When the engine was running to turn the stove on maximum mode. After some time, have to go warm air from all the ducts. Should be no smell of burning and fuel.
  • Turn on and check the air in different modes. It should not make extraneous sounds at work. Should appear cold stream of air.


  • On average, ordinary private car drives 10-20 thousand miles per year. Consequently, for 5 years comes out to about 100,000 km of mileage. For the mileage on brake discs 2-3 mm from the pads. If you see new pads, so the mileage is likely more than 100 thousand km.
  • Fabric upholstery is erased in approximately 90-130 thousand km of mileage, automatic — 200 000 km, and Especially too abrasive on the armrest of the side seat support.