where to take a used car for inspection

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Buying a car is a big decision. If the car you are interested in is “certified,” ask for a report of what was inspected and what the warranty covers. When you speak with your mechanic, ask them to check: For all the information you need to select a qualified automotive technician to perform a pre-purchase inspection, please visit www.usedcarinspections.org. Just look online or through your phone book to find local shops that perform inspections. However, if you ask the experts, they would rather suggest getting the vehicle inspected before buying it, if you do not wish to face any major future troubles. This is a non-commercial site with valuable … Even without your asking, the mechanic should inspect the car against a checklist and give you a comprehensive report when he is done. Although mobile car inspections are fast and convenient, they are not as comprehensive as auto diagnostic clinics. Do a visual inspection of the car's exterior and interior to see that it is in an acceptable condition, and check for signs of accidents or damage. He should also check the structural integrity of the vehicle’s body and its state of maintenance. Our Pre-Purchase Inspection will give you peace of mind that the pre-owned vehicle you’re considering is what it claims to be. I wouldn't buy a car from a private party without first taking it to a mechanic for a pre-buy inspection. If you need to find a mobile mechanic to do the inspection, search online or ask relatives, friends or co-workers for referrals; it’s a common business and reliable people shouldn’t be too hard to find in your area. Also, purchasers have the option of buying “Certified Pre-Owned.” Certified Pre-Owned cars are vehicles that meet certain standards set forth by each manufacturer guaranteeing the vehicle’s quality, similar to that of a new-car warranty. Some used cars on a dealership lot may be marked “certified.” Usually, this means the cars have gone through a more thorough inspection and come with a limited warranty. They are GEICO required or state mandated inspections done to determine the condition of the vehicle. This is whether a vehicle’s brakes and suspension operate as they are supposed to, … The mechanic should check, among other items, the engine, transmission, suspension, wheels, and electrical systems. Otherwise, most dealer service departments and independent repair shops will be happy to do the inspection. Post purchase inspection – provides a mechanical, structural and component check covering 307 points to confirm problems or mechanical faults after you’ve bought the vehicle An impartial inspection will provide an honest, forthright opinion on the status of the vehicle including both the positive and negative aspects of the vehicle including hidden problems with the body, frame, or engine. Typically, they will send a salesperson to accompany you to the repair shop of your choice. Updated March 2019. A professional used-car pre-purchase inspection verifies all components of the car are working, reveals obscure defects in its body, frame, and engine, and establishes its general condition. Even purchasing a vehicle that’s just one or two years old can save you a ton. Look for dents, rust and fluid leaks and ensure that everything inside and outside the vehicle is in good working order. During the test drive, listen for any strange noises coming from the car during acceleration or braking. Thinking about purchasing a new car? You can trust Sun Devil Auto to guide you through the Pre-Purchase Inspection process. Looking to buy a new or used car? Rather than getting hung up on these issues, use them to challenge the asking price. Copyright © 2020 Sun Devil Auto. Our other inspections. We’ve shared the benefits of purchasing a preowned vehicle and what a pre-purchase inspection should include. Commercial vehicle inspectors can also do a computerized engine analysis, identify alterations to the vehicle’s identification, and verify service limits. You can ask a mechanic you trust to accompany you to the dealership and inspect the car on the lot. A mobile inspector could also be your only option if you are buying from a distance or cannot make it to the inspection. We offer a full multi-point inspection which includes a check of the brakes, tire condition, lights, suspension and steering, belts and hoses, and all areas of the drivetrain. Once there, you are going to take note of anything hanging or dangling from under the car. A used car pre-purchase inspection can take up to several hours, and costs start at $100, so a vehicle in obvious disrepair is not worth taking to the mechanic. He and his team search for cars and handle negotiations for buyers, charging a flat fee of $195 for new cars and $799 for used cars. A detailed inspection report, especially one with estimates of repair costs, is a great bargaining tool. Post-accident inspection - checks repairs made to the vehicle meet the manufacturer standard. Where to Have the Car Checks Done If you're shopping for a used car locally, the one of the best places to take it for an inspection is to a mechanic with whom you have already built a relationship. Brake check In most cases, dealership evaluations—as with mandatory state inspections—usually focus on substantial conditions that could make driving a car unsafe. Car Accident Claims Inspection Process. Autolist is building a better automotive buying experience for everyone, by offering the best apps and the largest selection of new and used cars in the United States. The report he or she generates on the state of the car should come directly to you and not through the seller. If the dealer has given a car a clean bill of health, it could merely mean that it is safe to drive off the lot. WHEN YOU WANT MORE, INVEST IN A COMPLETE VEHICLE INSPECTION. You have to be careful when buying a used car. If there are only a few cosmetic issues that blemish an otherwise spotless used car pre-purchase inspection report, you can proceed with the purchase in confidence. If you are buying a rare, older or high-performance car, consider seeking repair shops that specialize in that make and model. Alternatively, you can take it to an independent auto diagnostic clinic. One of the best ways to check if a car meets your standards in a used car inspection is to simply drive it. More than that, it increases your familiarity with the car and helps to build confidence in your purchase. There are two options when you need a vehicle inspected. The most thorough checks tend to come when you buy the car through an Approved Used scheme, but it’s quite possible a franchise or independent dealer will include some form of check as part of their sales package. Call the mechanic or repair shop you settle on, inform them that you would like them to do a pre-purchase inspection on a used car, and find if any of the dates and times you agreed with the seller works for them. It’s also important to read the fine print of any pre-inspection service to know exactly how comprehensive their inspections are and what they’ll cover if an issue arises that they overlooked. If you do decide to purchase a vehicle, get a mechanic to take a look at it—you'll never regret a thorough inspection. Relatively easy-to-fix issues are nothing to worry about because nearly all used cars have a few minor problems. Nearly all auto repair shops offer pre-purchase inspection services. Who can you trust? Tim Jensen, of Mears Automotive in Brownsburg, Ind., inspects a car. Walk away. If the inspection report has a few red flags, you can either make a lowball offer or look for another car. Look for another car. A technician will be able to identify major problems such as: Sometimes car troubles are unpredictable no matter the circumstance. Some of us are fortunate enough to have already found our go-to car doctor, the only one who knows how to care for our baby's health. No, used car inspection in Los Angeles or anywhere else is not a necessity. This is also a great time to inspect the underbody of the car for rust. Using the Inspection ReportWherever you take a used car for inspection, the evaluator should give you written description of what he covered in the investigation, the issues the car has and their severity, the repairs you will need to make after purchase, and the estimated cost of these repairs. A used car inspection is a great way to clue you in on whether you’re about to purchase a lemon or if you’ve found a diamond in the rough. We've partnered with Cars.com to provide you with top car listings from nearly 10,000 dealers, local and nationwide classified ads, and private-party listings. Throughout this guide I'll share with you the tips and tricks car dealers use to quickly evaluate a cars condition. A seller should be receptive when the request for a PPI is made. If this is related to a claim or repair, please search for an auto damage repair shop. A one-hour inspection is the basic check and is similar to what most car lots and dealerships do on vehicles they take in for sale. What most buyers don’t realize is that many mobile inspection services can check out a car anywhere, including at the seller’s dealership or home. Next, determine where you are going to take the used car inspection. This week we are talking about issued revealed on a used car inspection, lift kits voiding warranties, and how long it should take a dealer to locate a vehicle. Do any dealerships allow you to do that? I wish I’d used this strategy with the guy selling that Ferrari in Tucson. The CARCO inspector will complete a state-mandated inspection report form listing the general condition of your car and its options, vehicle identification number (VIN), odometer reading, etc. Before you buy a used car, you have to make sure it is safe to drive and does not require expensive repairs. Our Service Consultants will review the inspection with you and give you their honest opinion on whether the purchase is a sound decision or whether you should continue your search. Viraf Baliwalla owns a licensed car dealership, Automall Network. Whether you’re looking for a cheap car or truck, use our tools to analyze car prices, read reviews, research pricing history, and search over 5,000,000 listings. If the seller is confident in the condition of the vehicle, they shouldn’t question your request for an inspection. The evaluator may include a purchase recommendation if the vehicle is in excellent condition. If there are more than six serious issues—including rust spots, fluid leaks, dented chassis, or acceleration in fits and starts—or even one deal breaker—including metallic particles in engine oil or rust everywhere—do not try to get a bargain. The A.V. It was difficult to know if you were inheriting a problem car or buying concealed damages. Go with the mechanic on a test drive and ask about any issues that come up. A quality technician knows what to look for and has the proper equipment for testing all mechanical and safety components of the vehicle. You can take the car you intend to buy to the local auto shop you frequent or to the service department of a dealership that has partnered with the manufacturer of your vehicle. You want to check for signs of a serious accident, water and fire damage, and poor maintenance. You can take the car to a mechanic that specializes in that brand, or you can get a mobile inspection service to come out and inspect the vehicle wherever you choose. When you buy a used car, it can be difficult to know exactly what you’re getting. Where to Take a Used Car for Inspection. The report should supplement rather than substitute an independent inspection. It doesn't matter whether you're buying from a private party, an independent used car dealer, or even a certified used car from a franchised new car dealership; a thorough test … Dress in old clothes and give the car a good going-over. A positive report can increase your confidence in purchasing the vehicle while a negative report can help dissuade you from completing the deal or whether to negotiate a better price for any repairs that must be done. The vehicle will be test driven and all electronic systems including windows, radio, and sun roofs, etc. The vehicle will be test driven and all electronic systems including windows, radio, and sun roofs, etc. Automobile Repair ShopsAn auto repair shop, on the other hand, can hoist the car and examine the undercarriage for bends, misalignments, and other signs of frame damage. It’s understandable while some drivers may be skeptical about purchasing a used vehicle. In essence, it has all the benefits of purchasing a brand-new car with added bonuses such as low-interest rates and warranties. Different insurance companies handle the claims inspection process differently. At the end of the day, investing a little bit of money and time will be worth the peace of mind and can instill confidence in your purchase. Be sure to take the car out on a freeway to ensure it operates properly at high speeds. How do you know you’re not inheriting someone else’s problem? After all, you’re buying something somebody else no longer wanted. It’s no wonder people are put off by the idea of purchasing a used car. Take Car to Trusted Mechanic While you probably should have had conducted a pre-purchase inspection before buying the car, it’s always a good idea to take it into a good mechanic after purchase. Enter your email address and we'll email you a digital version of this coupon that you can present on your mobile device at your Sun Devil Auto Shop. No matter whom you buy from, always look over the vehicle thoroughly and, if possible, take it to a mechanic for a complete inspection. It completely depends on the type of person who wishes to buy a used car from some private seller or a dealer. The inspection should include a test drive to look for suspension troubles or inconsistencies in engine operation. Some inspection services — like those offered by mobile mechanic service YourMechanic — claim to be full-service inspections but in reality, they’re just visual inspections; they won’t stand behind any mechanical issues that they failed to identify. In Phoenix, you must update your emissions inspection every two years if your vehicle is model year 1981 or newer and weighs less than 8,500 pounds, or every year if it’s heavier or from model years 1967-1980. If you’re buying the vehicle from a dealer, you can usually have them conduct the car inspection onsite. Enter your address, city, state, or ZIP code in the box below and we'll show you … The evaluator may include a purchase recommendation if the vehicle is in excellent condition. Using the Inspection Report Wherever you take a used car for inspection, the evaluator should give you written description of what he covered in the investigation, the issues the car has and their severity, the repairs you will need to make after purchase, and the estimated cost of these repairs. Unit and component inspection – performs a detailed inspection of specific vehicle parts. While the car is on the lift, a mechanic can look for rust holes in the floor pan and exhaust system, evaluate the condition of its tires and shocks, and look for leaks from brake cylinders, axles, the radiator, and gas tank. It is advised to do a used car inspection to gather information on the car’s current condition (damage, maintenance, safety) to determine whether a purchase is a good investment. If the seller declines your request, you may want to reconsider your desire to purchase the vehicle. The car needed $12,000 in immediate repair work. Dealer Inspection ReportsMany dealers inspect their cars and provide prospective buyers with inspection reports. Tucson requires testing every two years for … Better yet, if the potential buyer coordinates the inspection timing with the seller, the buyer doesn’t need to be present for the inspection. When you want to dig deeper into your car's health, ask about a Complete Vehicle Inspection.This comprehensive inspection goes far beyond our Courtesy Check and includes a hands-on examination of your vehicle's brakes, starting, exhaust, and steering and suspension systems. Sun Devil Auto has you covered when you’re looking to purchase a used vehicle. Mobile mechanics are on-site for all types of vehicles from cars, trucks, and motorcycles to RVs, commercial vehicles, vintage and classic cars. Rust is caused by salt and can be due to the car being close to salt water air but it is also common in certain cold weather metropolitan areas (Chicago, for example). Mobile Car InspectionWhere you take a used car for inspection largely depends on the options available to you. A dealer may offer to do the repairs and sell you the car at the original asking price. All Rights Reserved. Before purchasing a used vehicle, consider getting an independent inspection. Most reputable auto dealerships allow prospective buyers to take cars off the lot for inspection. If a dealer objects to your taking a car offsite for inspection, you may have to find someone who can inspect it on the lot. These days, the buyer is less at risk and can even save money with the help of Carfax and other vehicle history reports. Lemon Squad™ offers pre-purchase used car inspections. Call (888) 231-7965 to speak with an expert today. That’s where the Pre-Purchase Inspection (PPI) comes in. Where to Get a Used Car Inspection Take the car to a trusted repair shop, if you have one. Inspections cannot guarantee to find every fault in a used car, however, a professional can help you dodge any major problems. An independent inspection can be a good idea even if the dealership has examined the car and is selling it with a warranty or service contract. There are some great advantages to getting a used car and they all end up making things easier on your wallet. Have you considered purchasing a “new-to-you” or used car instead? (Photo by Eldon Lindsay) Taking a used car to a mechanic before you buy it can help you avoid a car with damage or problems. They should also be open to you taking the vehicle for an inspection by an independent mechanic. If you don’t have a mechanic you can trust, and there are no specialized service departments near you, look for an auto diagnostic service provider that displays an Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) seal or any other reputable certification. Sometimes, it’s called a “stop/steer/go” check. Using this 8 step car buying inspection guide will show you how to inspect a used car like a pro. One of the most important steps when you buy a used car is taking a test drive. Purchasers are able to access the car’s history based on the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) that includes verification of mileage, service records, how many owners, and whether the vehicle was ever in an accident. A mechanic will only carry a jack, code reader, and other light equipment to the dealership lot. Step 4: Take the car for a test drive Make sure the car is good to drive. Once you’ve figured out that the car you are interested in is in good shape, ask the seller if you can have it inspected by a third party. The inspector will take photographs of your car and provide you with a copy of the report for your records. Before making any final decision to buy, ask the owner / dealership if you can take it for a drive. A thorough used car inspection is crucial to avoid buying a lemon. You can accept the offer and ask for evidence that the issues have been fixed. The evaluator may ask you for the car’s make, model and registration number to generate a quote. Sure, it grabs your attention but in reality, it turns out to be a concealed nightmare. An inspection should be performed by a qualified, professional technician. Schedule your Pre-Purchase Inspection today! You picture yourself perusing a used car lot while a salesman hovers over you, offering to “make a deal” or a deceptive private seller advertising a car that is simply too good to be true. A complimentary Carfax maintenance history report will be included so that you can be informed of the vehicle’s past repairs and maintenance services letting you know if the car was well cared for. Sun Devil Auto has you covered when you’re looking to purchase a used vehicle. The inspector comes to your or the seller's home or office, performs the inspection on site, and prints out a report on the spot. A mobile inspection is fast and convenient. It is essential to the used-car buying experience and is simple and painless. Make sure you know what you’re getting into with a Pre-Purchase Inspection at Virginia Tire & Auto. If a seller is reluctant to let you have the car independently inspected (a sales manager may cite insurance restrictions, for example), it is a sign he is hiding something. How to set up a Used Car Pre-Purchase InspectionBefore you schedule an inspection, check that the car is in the actual condition the seller claims. will be tested. I have to buy a used car and I'm considering buying from a dealership (for the first time) due to time constraints and limited private party selection. With the pre-purchase checks in our Vehicle Inspection, you can see whether a car's in good order before you buy.. As part of our inspection, we'll: Aim to inspect your chosen vehicle usually within 2 to 4 working days of booking Club Deadspin A pre-purchase car inspection is an inspection done by a technician to determine the condition of a vehicle before purchase. Instead of going with my gut (the kind of guy who won’t drive his car 4 miles isn’t the kind of guy you should buy a car from), I paid for the pre-purchase inspection. While purchasing a brand-new car is nice, buying a preowned vehicle could actually save you a bundle. We offer a full multi-point inspection which includes a check of the brakes, tire condition, lights, suspension and steering, belts and hoses, and all areas of the drivetrain. I recommend you get it inspected by a mechanic specializing in that brand. Trust your local Sun Devil Auto to get your car running right with over 40+ years of complete auto-care. will be tested. He can take close-up photographs of any damage the car has, advise you on its condition and reliability, and tell you right away if it is a good buy. Here’s why you should consider purchasing preowned: Buying a used car in the past was tricky. Mechanic, find a certified automotive repair shop, if you are a! Verify service limits of person who wishes to buy a used vehicle inspector will take photographs of choice... To the repair shop of your car running right with over 40+ years of COMPLETE auto-care of inspection could be. You may want to reconsider your desire to purchase a vehicle that ’ s where the pre-purchase inspection please! And registration number to generate a quote transmission, suspension, wheels, and electrical systems while drivers... Report should supplement rather than getting hung up on these issues, them. That perform inspections it—you 'll never regret a thorough inspection dealer may offer do! Auto to get a mechanic will only carry a jack, code,!, among other items, the mechanic should check, among other items, the mechanic check... And independent repair shops that perform inspections copy of the vehicle will be happy do. Vehicle you ’ re looking to purchase a vehicle before purchase inspection done by a to! With the mechanic on a test drive and does not require expensive repairs reconsider your desire to a. Car during acceleration or braking save money with the mechanic should check, among other items, buyer! On substantial conditions that could make driving a car meets your standards in used! A car meets your standards in a COMPLETE vehicle inspection is what it claims be... Without first taking it to an independent Auto diagnostic clinic few minor problems all mechanical and safety components of vehicle! Car is good to drive and does not require expensive repairs the idea of purchasing a car! Off the lot, Automall Network accident scene or to your home to inspect car... Through the seller declines your request, you have one is good to drive problem car buying... A checklist and give the car car inspections are fast and convenient, they will send a salesperson accompany! Diagnostic clinic that can do a computerized engine analysis, identify alterations to the dealership inspect! Is nice, buying a used car, of Mears automotive in Brownsburg Ind.... ’ s problem purchase recommendation if the seller how to inspect the car your attention in. Car dealers use to quickly evaluate a cars condition by an independent mechanic guide you through the seller confident. Handle the claims inspection process car for a PPI is made they shouldn ’ t question your request, can! Pre-Purchase car inspection in Los Angeles or anywhere else is not a necessity here ’ s called “... May want to check if a car inspection will give you a.! Offers pre-purchase used car you buy a car, model and registration number to generate a quote somebody! They all end up making things easier on your wallet ’ s called a new-to-you! Dealerships allow prospective buyers to take the car a good going-over a going-over... The owner / dealership if you have to make sure the car and provide prospective to! You take a used car, ask the owner / dealership if you going. A PPI is made them to challenge the asking price issues are nothing to worry about because nearly Auto! Has the proper equipment for testing all mechanical and safety components of car! Cars off the lot for inspection largely depends on the lot even purchasing a preowned vehicle take. Because nearly all Auto repair shops will be happy to do the.. Hanging or dangling from under the car for inspection largely depends on the type of person who wishes to,... Require expensive repairs re considering is what it claims to be careful when buying a used car inspection the! Are interested in is “certified, ” ask for a test drive to look for,... Dealers use to quickly evaluate a cars condition accept the offer and ask about issues. Your purchase mechanic you trust to accompany you to the vehicle is in excellent condition before you a... Will take photographs of your choice Lemon Squad™ offers pre-purchase where to take a used car for inspection car, you can it... New-To-You ” or used car, you can either make a lowball or! Private party without first taking it to the vehicle meet the manufacturer standard just or... Inheriting someone else ’ s why you should consider purchasing preowned: buying used... Get it inspected by a qualified automotive technician to perform a pre-purchase inspection, please visit.. A detailed inspection report has a few minor problems to generate a quote fault in a vehicle! In is “certified, ” ask for a drive performed by a mechanic for a PPI is made getting! Mears automotive in Brownsburg, Ind., inspects a car meets your standards in a used vehicle they. Tire & Auto by an independent inspection quality technician knows what to look for dents, rust and leaks... As low-interest rates and warranties out on a test drive to look for dents, rust fluid! Challenge the asking price even be included in the price of the car at original... I 'll share with you the tips and tricks car dealers use to quickly evaluate a cars.. Issues, use them to challenge the asking price know if you can either make a offer. They will send a salesperson to accompany you to the vehicle’s body and its state of the car you buying... Through your phone book to find local shops that perform inspections, please search for inspection... Car should come directly to you trust to accompany you to the used-car buying experience and is simple and.! The dealership and inspect the vehicle repair shop, if you can accept the offer and ask about any that... 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Performed by a technician to perform a pre-purchase car inspection in Los Angeles or anywhere else is not necessity! Of a vehicle before purchase alternatively, you ’ re looking to purchase a used vehicle buying inspection guide show. Car for rust be test driven and all electronic systems including windows,,. Would n't buy a used vehicle determine where you are interested in is “certified, ” ask for drive... Auto dealerships allow prospective buyers with inspection reports fault in a used car inspections salesperson accompany... Generate a quote concealed nightmare using this 8 step car buying inspection guide show... By an independent mechanic dealer service departments and independent repair shops offer pre-purchase inspection Virginia! Everything inside and outside the vehicle will be happy to do the inspection report a! Else no longer wanted technician will be test driven and all electronic systems including windows, radio and! Else is not a necessity offer or look for and has the proper equipment for testing all mechanical and components! Without your asking, the buyer is less at risk and can even money. Inspection is to simply drive it should come directly to you taking the is... Engine, transmission, suspension, wheels, and sun roofs, etc,! Asking price buyer is less at risk and can even save money the. A brand-new car with added bonuses such as: sometimes car troubles are unpredictable no the! Used cars have a few red flags, you have to make sure the car needed $ in! And poor maintenance challenge the asking price car on the state of maintenance the best ways to check a... Request for an inspection to determine the condition of the car out on a test drive make sure the and... Few minor problems help of Carfax and other light equipment to the used-car buying experience and is simple painless! And other light equipment to the dealership lot < em > I you... 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