Post It
hood open on a rusty used truck

5 things to check when buying a used car 

If you’re in the marketing for a different car, then it’s important to know what things to check when buying a used car. A used car can be a really smart investment or… a really dumb investment.

If you don’t do your research and complete a thorough inspection of the used vehicle, you could end up with a car that breaks down before a full month is even up. 

To make sure this doesn’t happen to you, we’ve laid out a few solid tips to keep in mind when buying a used car — including things to check when buying a used car, what mileage is considered ideal, and what brands to avoid.

Important things to check when buying a used car 

If you’re in the market for a used car, there are a few things you’ll want to check before making your purchase. 

  1. Take a close look at the body of the car. Are there any dents or scratches? Is the paint in good condition? This is obvious but the condition of the car sometimes reflects the persons car for maintenance if they have owned it for some time! 
  2. Take a look under the hood. Check to see that all the hoses and belts are in good condition. Too shiny is bad, this means they are most likely prepping it just for you (last minute) to strike a deal. Make sure its not just sprayed with the scent of WD-40! 
  3. While you’re under the hood, check the oil level and make sure there are no leaks
  4. Start the car and listen to the engine. Does it sound healthy? (If you are not mechanically inclined, don’t worry, you should just simply not hear anything unusual!)
  5. Take the car for a test drive. Pay attention to how it accelerates and brakes. Listen for strange noises. If everything seems to be in good working order, then you may have found yourself a good used car. But if not, move on to the next one!

Join Our Community

* indicates required

What brands typically make decent used cars?

When it comes to finding a good used car, there are a lot of things to consider. But one of the most important factors is the brand of the car. 

Some brands are just better built and last longer than others. So when you’re on the hunt for a used car, be sure to keep an eye out for these five brands: Honda, Toyota, Subaru, Nissan, along with Ford and Chevy F150 / Silverado trucks. These brands/models are known for their quality construction, dependability, and longevity. So you can rest assured that if you buy a used car from one of these brands, you’re getting a good deal.

With that said, there are definitely some brands that you should avoid if you’re looking for a used car. For example, vehicles from luxury brands often come with high price tags, even when they’re secondhand. In addition, sports cars tend to depreciate quickly, so you’re likely to lose money if you buy one used. And finally, while pickup trucks are durable and versatile, they can also be difficult and expensive to repair.

What is good mileage for a used car?

When you’re in the market for a used car, one of the most important things to consider is mileage. After all, a car that has been driven for 100,000 miles is going to have a lot more wear and tear than one that has only done 10,000. 

So what is considered to be good mileage for a used car? Generally speaking, anything under 50,000 miles is considered to be low mileage. Anything between 50,000 and 100,000 is considered to be average mileage, while anything over 100,000 is considered to be high mileage. 

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule. A car that has been driven regularly and well maintained can easily last 200,000 miles or more. Conversely, a car that has been driven infrequently or poorly maintained may only last for 50,000 miles. 

Ultimately, it’s important to consider all of the factors before making a decision. But if you’re looking for a used car with good mileage, aim for something with less than 50,000 miles on the odometer.

When is it a good idea to buy a used car?

There are a few things to keep in mind when considering whether or not to buy a used car. 

  • First, take into account the price of the vehicle. If it’s significantly lower than the sticker price of a new car, it may be because it has serious problems that aren’t immediately apparent. 
  • Secondly, consider how long you’re planning on keeping the car. If you’re only going to keep it for a few years, it may not be worth the hassle of dealing with potential repairs down the road. 
  • Finally, think about your driving needs. If you have a long commute or often drive in bad weather, it might be worth opting for a newer car with more features that can better handle those conditions. 

Ultimately, whether or not to buy a used car is a personal decision, but it’s important to do your research and weigh all your options before making a purchase.

Need help making the right decision on a used car?

We’d love to help! At DoUHave, we have decades of combined experience buying, selling, and fixing up used cars. If you’re interested in getting feedback on the used car you’re eyeballing, send us an email. 

We’ll give you feedback on the condition, pricing, and brand of the vehicle and help you decide whether or not it’s a good investment. 

9 thoughts on “5 things to check when buying a used car 

  1. Check how bad the oil looks on the dipstick. It should be fairly clean looking.
    Have someone turn steering wheel to the left and right while looking at steering box to frame mounting. No rust and no movement on frame and steering box. Got burned by an almost 80yr old man that told me how good a ride it was. No plates so I couldn’t take it on to the street.

  2. I am interested in a 2015 GMC Acadia SLE-1- 67-k $17,887

    2016 Acadia SLE1 75k $16,267

    2018 Acadia SLE1 45k $27,488

  3. Looking at a Nissan rouge with less than 80000 miles 2017 only problem is a 10 year loan cause credit and cash problems on my part

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *