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How To Check Used Cars

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Are you buying a Second-hand Car (Used Cars) or New Car? If you are planning to buy a second-hand car, then we say it’s a smart choice because you will be saved from the struggle of an endless trail of paperwork, insurance, and registration process. 

In India, We are witnessing a paradigm shift. The second-hand car market is observing an exponential rise in sales in the last couple of years. Due to the increasing cost of new Cars, owning a new car becomes an expensive investment for the common people, so buying a second-hand car is a good option.

Before buying a used car, make sure that the interior and exterior of the car does not have any major issues. Take a test drive to ensure the proper functioning of the car, check the history of the car and settle with a reasonable value before taking a final decision.

Here we have some tips to check used cars before buying:

1.Park the car on the ground for checking:


If you park the car on the ground level, you will be able to properly check the car exterior, condition of tyres, look if there is rusting, any rough spots, scratches, dent, check undercarriage is in proper working condition, or any crack. The car should be properly cleaned and everything must look neat because all these factors affect the value which you are repaying for the car.

 2.Check whether the trunk of the used car is in proper condition:

car hood

Make sure that the trunk should not have any sign of water damage or rust. Also, check the holes, damage, and cracks inside the trunk which can cause trouble for you. Carefully check the trunk is opening easily and closing firmly. Remember heavy rusting, holes, and cracks will affect the car’s performance and appearance of the trunk.

3.Properly Check the tyres:

Tyres of used cars tell a lot about the car, they should be worn and perfectly matched with each other to ensure alignment because bad alignment can cause driving hazards, frame damage, and affect the car’s performance. If the tyres are in proper condition then it means the car owner is selling a brand new second-hand car for some reason. 

4.Carefully Check the frame: 

Make sure that the car’s frame is in perfect condition and avoid cars having damaged frames because it reduces the longevity of the car. Properly check the undercarriage because a damaged frame tends to break down quickly. Carefully look at the scratches which indicate the replacement of the fenders or realigned due to crash or accident. 

5.Look under the hood:

Open the car’s hood while the engine is cool and check if there is any mark of rust, dents, cracks, scratches, and damage, so in case you find any of these marks this means the car was poorly maintained. Inspect the belts and hoses for damage because they should be damaged or crack free. Carefully check the condition of the timing belt because the belts can be easily damaged and it can cost much for a replacement.

car hood

6.Check Engine for corrosion and leakage: 

You can easily check a used car’s engine by looking at the engine block, if it has dark brown oil stain then it implies that it has a leakage in the gasket which could probably lead to costly repair in the future. And, make sure fluid levels are not empty, but if there is any fluid holding tank is empty then ask the car owner as it can be the sign of leakage.

7.Check the Interior: 

car interior

You must feel good while you sit in the car, properly check the adjustments as well as the functioning of the seats and furnishing for any rips, damages, stains or tears. Turn on the AC to check whether it is in good running condition or not and ask the car owner when the freon was refilled last and is there any freon leakage, as it helps AC to blow cool air and second-hand cars generally have low freon levels.

8.Check Mileage: 

It is very important to check used cars mileage, so you must see the dashboard to track the number which states the miles driven by a used car. Mileage signifies the car’s age by showing high or low mileage. If the car’s mileage is high then it is in good running condition and handles more damages related to mechanical components. On average, a car can be driven up to 20,000 km per year, so it does not make sense if you buy a used car with low mileage.

9.Check both the display and indicator lights are functioning properly:

Properly check all the sensors or fault alerts are in good working conditions as well as warning lights to ensure safety. If the stereo or rear-view camera has a digital display, so carefully check whether they work properly or not. If the display and indicator lights are indicating a problem then it means there is a charging system problem.

10.Test Drive:

Taking the test drive is an essential part while checking used cars as it’s the best way to know all the necessary things related to the car. So, we strongly recommend buyers to take a test drive with the seller because you can ask your queries while driving before coming to a final decision.

  •  Press hardly on brakes to check their functioning: 

By pressing the brakes harder to decelerate quickly, but carefully. You can try this while going around 48 km/h where the are is traffic-free. Make sure the brake pedal doesn’t make a vibration or sound strangely. Also, check the car should not bend while pressing the brakes.

  • Check the car’s history: 

After getting the desired information from the seller, then start your own research by checking the history of the car’s service. Ask for the record of times when the car gets serviced and other information related to performance, problems and repairs of the car. There could be so many reasons for selling used cars such as accidents or negative experiences.

  1. Negotiate for car’s price: 

Keeping all the facts together such as quality, mileage, frame, rusting or any other damages, don’t hesitate to offer an amount which you are willing to pay. And, remember the car requires good maintenance, as well as its value, will depreciate over time.

  •  Transfer used car Registration certificate (RC):

Firstly you need to fill and submit form 29 & form 30 which is issued by RTO nearest to your residence and get signed by the current car owner and you. Then register the transaction and after that local RTO will undertake the transfer. Also, check important things such as if there are no pending loans, have the original invoice, NOC from the finance company of the car, servicing record, Valid PUC certificate and many more.

  • Get used car insurance to your name: 

Make sure you have a valid insurance policy copy of your name, it will help in getting registration transferred. If the insurance policy is under the previous car owner and RC is registered by your name, it would not make any sense and the policy will be considered as null.  You can get the car insurance of your name by changing the name in the previous policy, or  you can buy a new insurance policy.


We hope all the tips provided by us on the checking of used cars turn out to be useful for you. But we would recommend you to get the car inspected by a mechanic for better understanding because a mechanic can examine all the necessary details and issues which can cause hazards in future. 

Mukesh choudhary
Mukesh choudhary
Age may offer experience but my passion for cars brings me expertise. I am extremely good at one thing and that's writing about cars.

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