4 Tips for Test-Driving a Used Car


Buying a used car can save you a lot of money, but it is important to know what you are getting. There are several steps you need to take when purchasing a vehicle, including taking a test drive. This is an essential step in the process for several reasons. During the test drive, you can feel how the car rides and drives to make sure it is a good fit, and you can check for any mechanical issues. Here are some tips for test-driving a used car.

1. Prepare Before the Test Drive

Before you take a potential vehicle out for a test drive, you want to do some research. Read up on the car and find out what other drivers have to say about it, looking for specifics about what they liked and what they didn't. You also want to find out what it will cost you. Talk to your bank and get preapproved for an auto loan to make sure you can afford the payments. It is also a good idea to research different used cars before you go for a test drive, so you have some options.

2. Before You Get In

Take a walk around the car before you get in to drive. Check out the color to see if it is something you like enough to have for several years, look for any scratches or dents that would need work, and check the size. Will it fit in your driveway or garage? Open up the trunk or the hatch to see the size of the cargo space. Make sure there is enough room for everything that you need to put in there, whether it is groceries, sporting equipment, or camping gear. 

3. Sit Down

When you sit in the driver's seat, adjust it to make sure you can get in the correct driving position. You don't want to leave this step out and find out later that you can't get the seat where you need it. Also, look at the dashboard and the driver information display to make sure everything is easy to see and within easy access.

4. Driving

Start up the engine and listen for a few minutes. Do you hear any tapping noises or ticking sounds? If you don't know what to listen for, bring along someone who is more familiar with engine sounds. You also want to pump the brake several times and then press down on it to make sure it doesn't sink all the way to the floor, and press down on the brake while shifting through gears to make sure it goes smoothly into reverse. Once you head out on the road, make sure it has smooth steering, and that it stays in a straight line when you apply the brakes.

There is a lot to look for when you test drive a car. It is important to make sure you like how it drives, you can access and see the controls for driving and for the infotainment system, and that it is in good mechanical shape. Come down to Crosstown Chrysler Jeep Dodge and let one our sales team members help you find the right used car for you and your family.

Categories: Pre-Owned Inventory