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Used Car Buying Guide and Checklist

It’s important to keep in mind that when buying a used car, research is definitely key. If you feel like you aren’t getting the best deal possible or you feel rushed while inspecting your potential used car, it’s okay to say no thank you and walk away.

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Item
Item
Selection
Category
Check
Notes
  • General

  • 1
    Year
  • 2
    Make
  • 3
    Model (any options?)
  • 4
    Asking Price/Phone#
  • 5
    Trade in Value
  • 6
    Scratches
  • 7
    Dents
  • 8
    Windshield (chips or cracks?)
  • 9
    Headlights (foggy?)
  • 10
    Inspection Sticker Current?
  • 11
    Rusty Brake rotors?
  • 12
    Tire Tread
  • 13
    All 4 tires/wheels the same?
  • 14
    Wheel damage?
  • 15
    Rips on seats
  • 16
    Car Options (Navi, sunroof, etc)
  • 17
    Headliner (saggy?)
  • 18
    Automatic/Manual
  • 19
    Steering wheel (worn?)
  • 20
    Leaks (near engine and rear diff)
  • 21
    Rust (exhaust, frame, body, etc)
  • 22
    Suspension (tie rods, ball joints, shocks, axle, etc)
  • 23
    Frame Damage (from collision)
  • Engine

  • 24
    Hood pops open easily?
  • 25
    Frame (straight, no kinks)
  • 26
    Inspect for leaks (oil, coolant, tranny)
  • 27
    Oil level and oil (no metal, not frothy)
  • 28
    Check Coolant (make sure it’s not hot when you check)
  • 29
    Hood support/struts work?
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