Everybody has heard about questionable car salesmen in shady used car lots selling you run-down vehicles on their last leg. However, buying used cars in Las Vegas doesn’t need to be a scary or trying experience if you take the time to ask the right questions up front about your new potential purchase. Arming yourself with knowledge will help ensure that you get the right car for you and your family, and that you know all the finer details before you sign any paperwork.
Here are the questions you need answered when considering a used car purchase.
- What Does the Carfax Say? – Carfax is now an international reporting agency that tracks movements of vehicles, accident reports, liens and other valuable information. A clean Carfax report is a good sign, but you can also learn about the vehicle’s history including if it was used as a fleet vehicle, if it has ever been in any accidents and more.
- Is There A Clean Title? – Often more frustrating than mechanical issues, hidden problems with a title can cost you a ton of extra time and money when you go to get license plates. Title laws change by city and county so trying to resolve issues can be a complex process that may require paying for title bond insurance, or tracking down previous titles.
- Do the Electrical Systems Work? – While it is standard for dealerships to do a final walk through with you to ensure that all headlights, brake lights and turn signals work properly, you should go one step further and check the cigarette lighters/charging ports for power. Check your locks, windows, sunroof and radio to make sure that everything is working correctly before you drive off the lot.
- Are the Air Conditioner and Heater Working? – In the Las Vegas used auto market, air conditioning is a big deal. You don’t want to be caught in the desert summer heat without a properly-functioning AC system! However, even if it’s warm outside, take a minute to check the heater because if you wait until winter, you might find that it doesn’t work just when you need it most.
- How do the Tires Look? – Tires are an ongoing maintenance expense when you buy any car, but used cars especially are prone to having worn down or damaged tires. Check to make sure that the tires have plenty of life left, and quickly look for any signs of uneven wear from one side to the other indicating the need for alignment work.
There are plenty of other important questions to ask when buying used cars, but these are five of the most overlooked details when it comes to purchases. Asking about the legal status of the car with the title and Carfax report will save you time by allowing you to bypass cars that will turn into a paperwork nightmare.
Once you have test driven the car and determined that it runs and drives properly, a little extra time spent investigating the auxiliary systems won’t hurt. At Simply Autos, our goal is to answer any of your questions about the cars we have on our lot, and make sure that you get a quality vehicle for your money.