Buying a used car can offer the thrill of the deal. If you are purchasing a used car, it’s important to be informed about what you should look for before making your purchase. The following checklist can help you in your search for the perfect used car.

1. Do your research

Search online for a list of the most reliable used cars. Learn about the specific model you are considering and check to see if there have been any recalls on it.

Investigate the vehicle you plan to purchase thoroughly. Ask questions about it online and go out to test drive it if possible. Find as much as you can about the vehicle such as the condition of the bodywork, how many previous owners were there, what modifications or upgrades have been carried out and what special servicing has been done on it.

2. History report

A used car history report can also help you to see previous owners of a used vehicle and where the vehicle has been registered. It will also let you know if there is any history of theft, flood damage, or significant damage that may have been repaired poorly.

You should check out the repair records as well if they are available and call past owners to ask about their experience with the vehicle and what type of repairs they may have had to make on it.

Always run a revs check on a vehicle you are thinking of buying. Remember a clean history is a better buy than a lemon with a nice coat of paint!

3. See it in person

It is always a good idea to go and see the vehicle you are buying in person before you buy it. It’s the only way to know if it’s a good deal.

Try and go and see the vehicle you want to buy in person if possible, most dealerships will let you bring along a mechanic for an independent check of the vehicle. This is most important when buying a second-hand vehicle that has covered a lot of miles or one that has been off the road for some time.

However, if this is not possible, make sure you use all pictures and videos available to give you an idea of what the car looks like.

4. Inspecting the exterior and exterior

Inspect the seats and steering wheel for excessive wear. Using a flashlight, look inside door panels and under-seat covers for tell-tale signs of water damage or rusting. Check that seatbelts are intact and that seat adjustment switches work as they should. Ensure that there are no signs of cigarette burns or scuffs on the upholstery.

Don’t hesitate to check whether any items in the car are broken or in need of repair. Use your own judgment when doing this, there is nothing wrong with asking the dealer if they can provide replacement parts if needed.

When inspecting the exterior of the vehicle, check the overall condition of the paintwork. Look for areas where rust is beginning to form or chrome bits have been plated over. Take a close look at all lights – ensure that they are all working, look for cracks or missing pieces.

5. Take it for a ride

Before you buy a used car, make sure you test drive it. If you are buying privately, make sure to discuss the condition of the car with the seller beforehand.

When testing a used car, make sure it is in good working order. Check if any warning lights are on while driving and check for any unusual noises while driving the vehicle. Check that there are no leaks around broken seals or faulty water pumps while doing this.

Pay special attention to how well the car handles, accelerates, and brakes. All of these things will give you an indication of how well the vehicle has been maintained and if there are any problems with it. It is very important that the car feels right to you when you drive it.


Buying a used car is often an appealing option for many who are looking to buy a vehicle. It is important to be properly informed about the vehicle you are buying before making your purchase to avoid any problems in the future. Remaining well-informed can save you money, time, and headaches down the road. We hope that this checklist has helped you in your search for the perfect used car.