Isn’t test-driving a fantastic endeavor to consider the suitability of a vehicle? So, what does it matter, if it is a used car? If you are doing this for the first time, it is necessary to know how to do this right and take the best pick from the available choices. Naturally, test-driving a used vehicle is crucial because it allows you to evaluate the drive quality along with its mechanical wellness. Why limit yourself to a single test drive? Since it is a used vehicle, go for at least 2 tests to get into the groove and understand what you are getting into with this selection!
Here are the certain things to keep in mind while taking your car for a test drive.
1. Pick the Route First
When you are shopping for a used vehicle, the buyer should pick up the test drive route first before contacting the dealer! So, how do you pick a suitable route? Ideally, consider your regular haunts or the roads oft travelled by you. This way you will know exactly how you will feel driving this new vehicle and whether it is up to it. Good car dealers do not have any problems, if you pick up the route yourself for the test drive.
Make sure that you do not put the car radio on, since it will interfere with your perception of road, engine, wind, and tire noise inside the car cabin during the drive. Also, consider vehicle parking by testing its maneuvering and turns in crowded parking areas. When you are at it, why don’t you maneuver the car on a steep climb? Ideally, your vehicle should maintain adequate power levels on sharp incline or hilly terrain.
2. Postpone Buying for the Day
Are you considering buying the car on the same day of test-driving? Remember this is never a good choice! Sales experience will simply distract you from understanding the specific vehicle better. On this day, you need to focus completely on how suited it is to your needs. Will you love driving the vehicle 10 years from today? Ask yourself this question and postpone thoughts of purchase for another day altogether. Are you looking to pressurize the salesperson? So, why don’t you tell them that today you only want to drive and will consider purchase only if you love the experience.
3. Consider the Brakes
One of the main safety features associated with your use vehicle is of course the braking system. When you are going out for test drive do not forget to check this feature thoroughly. Do your car jerks when you push the brakes! Then there must be something wrong. Smooth stoppage of the car is desirable and this should guide your vehicle selection. When test-driving put both soft and hard pressure on the brakes and experience the response. Both too slow and too fast stoppages are debilitating.
4. What about acceleration/suspension
This is another point to consider during a used car test drive. The suspension and acceleration of your car are extremely important features to consider since these have great impact on your vehicle purchase choice. Does the car move immediately when you press accelerator? Is there hesitation or jerking present? Presence of jerking or hesitation signifies engine trouble. This is not something you want in your new vehicle. Ideally, the running should be smooth without accompaniment of loud noises. For suspension testing, drive on rough roads. One side pulling, swaying, and presence of noises indicate that something is wrong somewhere.
5. Is the engine making noise?
One of the vital components of any used vehicle or rather any car for that matter is of course the engine. This is the heart of the automobile. When test-driving, make sure that everything is right with the engine and pin point the difficulties if any. If you want to know for sure, why don’t you roll up the car windows and turn off the radio? Is the engine making noises? Try to determine from where they are coming. Is it occurring when you are driving on the highway or is related to fast acceleration? Try to determine the source and understand the vehicle better.
6. Steering and Passing Acceleration
When test-driving your vehicle do not ignore its passing acceleration. This signifies transmission shifts. If the used vehicle boasts of an automatic transmission, you should not feel the gearshifts during slow speed driving. Is the car taking more than a few seconds to shift gears? Then it must have great problems and you should look for another vehicle instead of going with this one.
Another important feature is of course the vehicle steering. Turning of the wheel should provide instant results based on your driving requirement. If you need to give, stress on the steering or maneuver an added a few inches this means there is something wrong with the associated components. For thoroughly testing the steering wheel, make sure you drive the vehicle to a vacant area to perform varied turns and if possible even the figure eight.
7. Cargo Space/Sitting Arrangement
In order to ensure that the used car is everything you always wanted take your family with you while driving. When you are at it do not forget to check out the cargo space as well. How much headroom on legroom is present inside? Are you sitting comfortably? Is there enough space for every member of your family, even the small children? Answer these questions in the positive to ensure that the particular vehicle is what you always wanted to buy. The cargo space should be enough for your transfer or driving requirements. Will an optimum size trunk fit in properly?
8. Other Points to Consider
Besides these obvious ones, there are some additional things, any test driver should check out thoroughly before making the purchase decision. Watch the battery, temperature gauges, and oil pressure, among other things to ensure that everything is as it should be!
Just consider these points and you can make a complete success of your test drive endeavor! So are you ready to take the wheels and start everyday trip with your car?