Expert Negotiation Tips: How to Inspect a Car

Rich Evans, Head of Technical Services at webuyanycar.com

About Rich

Richard Evans, Head of Technical Services at webuyanycar.com, has 31 years' experience as a mechanic. He is currently responsible for training webuyanycar.com employees across the UK on all aspects of car maintenance and appraisal.

Advice from the mechanic

As a mechanic for 31 years, our car expert Rich Evans knows exactly what to look out for when buying a new car. Rich takes us through the forecourt checks you should make to ensure you don’t get ripped off. While reminding you of the most important lesson: the ticketed price is just the starting price. There’s always room to negotiate.

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About Rich

Richard Evans, Head of Technical Services at webuyanycar.com, has 31 years' experience as a mechanic. He is currently responsible for training webuyanycar.com employees across the UK on all aspects of car maintenance and appraisal.

;

Advice from the mechanic

As a mechanic for 31 years, our car expert Rich Evans knows exactly what to look out for when buying a new car. Rich takes us through the forecourt checks you should make to ensure you don’t get ripped off. While reminding you of the most important lesson: the ticketed price is just the starting price. There’s always room to negotiate.

Top ten essential checks to make on a car

1

Colour panels

Stand 2m away from the car and check the panels match. If they don't, work has been carried out- ask what and why?

2

Dashboard

Make sure no lights are illuminated when you run the engine. Especially engine management, anti-lock brake and airbag lights as they point to problems that are very expensive to fix.

3

Integrated sat nav

Make sure that a disc is there. If not, it's useless and a replacement is costly.

4

Tyre tread

Beware of anything that has less than 3mm as they will need to be changed.

5

Bolt-on panels

Check bolts to see if they have been turned. If the paint chips off, the car has had work done- again, ask why.

6

Modified cars

Enhancements are often done by DIY enthusiasts- meaning dangerous wiring, expensive insurance and a car thrashed to within an inch of its life. Check for alloy wheels, low suspension and souped up exhausts.

7

Air conditioning

Turn on and test it to avoid an uncomfortable or costly summer!

8

Service history

Check the paperwork is correct by calling the garage last to see it.

9

Mileage

Check the stats add up by visiting www.gov.uk/check-mot-history-vehicle.

10

Upholstery

Lift up any mats in the car, look out for any rips, tears and burns or even holes from high heels.

Top ten essential checks to make on a car

  • Colour panels

     

    Stand 2m away from the car and check the panels match. If they don't, work has been carried out- ask what and why?
  • Dashboard

     

    Make sure no lights are illuminated when you run the engine. Especially engine management, anti-lock brake and airbag lights as they point to problems that are very expensive to fix.
  • Integrated sat nav

     

    Make sure that a disc is there. If not, it's useless and a replacement is costly.
  • Tyre tread

     

    Beware of anything that has less than 3mm as they will need to be changed.
  • Bolt-on panels

     

    Check bolts to see if they have been turned. If the paint chips off, the car has had work done- again, ask why.
  • Modified cars

     

    Enhancements are often done by DIY enthusiasts- meaning dangerous wiring, expensive insurance and a car thrashed to within an inch of its life. Check for alloy wheels, low suspension and souped up exhausts.
  • Air conditioning

     

    Turn on and test it to avoid an uncomfortable or costly summer!
  • Service history

     

    Check the paperwork is correct by calling the garage last to see it.
  • Mileage

     

    Check the stats add up by visiting www.gov.uk/check-mot-history-vehicle.
  • Upholstery

     

    Lift up any mats in the car, look out for any rips, tears and burns or even holes from high heels.

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