How and Why to Check An Engine Before You Buy A Used Car?

Mechanic is unscrewing the ignition plugs of a modern car with a spark plug box spanner. Generic barcode on the plastic cap

Are you planning to buy a used car? Isn’t it exciting to get a beauty that talks in the language of speed and passion? The feeling of power behind the wheel is exhilarating, filled with adrenaline and white-knuckle. But wait, do you know, there are chances that you may get cheated if you don’t know how to check the used car engine before buying your dream second-hand car.

If you are a first-time buyer, don’t let yourself be fooled by the outer look of the car. From its outer look, it may look perfect and ready to roar, but the poor engine may lead you to the service center almost every day or week. Even though you are a regular buyer of the second-hand car, but, do you know the performance of a car entirely depends upon the condition of its engine, instead of its body paint and finish.

Here is the checklist that is necessary to follow while scrutinizing the engine condition.

Lift the hood

Remember, the materials under the hood are responsible for car’s performance. When you inspect a used car, switch on the parking brake, change the transmission in the park mode and switch off the engine. Take a flashlight and look for dent, scratch inside. If your nose catches the burning fuel smell, or feels like antifreeze, then you should know the car will show poor maintenance. And if you can see or smell leak, think twice before bargaining. A sign of poor quality may be the result of a racing modification. If everything is clean, don’t get too excited. It may be a camouflage.

Most of the times, dealers clean the hood before inviting buyers for inspection. The trick is to do cold start and check the fuel level. If the level is low and dirty, it means the dealer is lying. If during cold start, the battery needs boosting, or there is loud noise at start, it indicates the perturbed battery. Check for the smoke, if the car generates black or gray smoke, beware there is something fishy. You also need to check the carbon deposit under oil cap. If the internal engine part looks greasy and dirty, then beware and look for some other car.

Check the Odometer

The used car is obviously old and cannot show an odometer with 0 mileage. Nonetheless, if the odometer shows more than 10,000 miles of the used car that you have planned to buy, don’t buy it. The higher is the odometer the lower is the left time span of that car. It will be an utter bamboozle from the dealer to offer you the dying horse just because you don’t know much about the car.

Test drive is real fun

Cold drive is right and can tell you a lot, but you get the insinuation clearly only when you have a test drive. The smoothness of wheels on the road, the maximum speed, the condition of the brake, the irritating vibration, the troubled acceleration or declaration, the condition of interior, everything is significant and must be heeded. However, all these can be revealed only when you have a test drive of the car. The main part is to sense that, “this is the car that belongs to me”. If the car triumphs you emotionally, economically and physically (on road performance), this is the beauty you may be looking to adopt.

Documentation and papers

You definitely don’t want to buy a theft car or a car with accidental history. The proper documentation and original papers of the car are the proof that will confirm that your desired car is free from any haphazard and glitches that are most often kept hidden by the dealers of used cars. Besides, the service book tells you about the maintenance and the real picture behind the wheels.

Overall, it all depends on your choice, but you do need to give a quick check on the used car if you don’t want to face any further hurdle.

Posted in Cars