Used Car Tips: The Test Drive

Jul 06

Note:  This is the third post in a series of articles on what do when you are buying a used car.  Missed the other articles?  Don’t worry!  You can check them out here:

Bidding on a Used Car

Deciding on a Used Car


 After you’ve identified a potential used car, it’s time for the test drive.  The test drive is extremely important.  This is where you can really learntest drive about the car.  Make sure to put the car through its paces.  Drive it around for a while.  Take it uphill, brake firmly, accelerate smartly, corner tightly, and see how it does on the interstate.

How do you like the ride, handling, and performance?  Really use your senses to evaluate the car (ok, maybe you shouldn’t taste it, but use all of your other senses).  Does it drive straight?  Does it wallow and bottom out?  Does it hesitate on the acceleration and stumble?  When you’re braking, is it smooth, straight, and effective?  Do you hear anything out of the ordinary?  Do you smell anything like a gas leak?  Is everything in good shape?  Use all of this information to evaluate the ride.

Ask the owner about the car’s performance.  If you have suspicions about the car’s operation, you can always ask the owner for permission to take it to a mechanic for an inspection.  You’ll have to pay for it, of course, but it’s better than getting a lemon!

Now check all the accessories:  the heater, windows, locks, radio, defroster, A/C, wipers, signals, and lights.  These can be costly to repair, so you want to make sure they work well.  It’s good to try all of these accessories during the test drive, not only to ensure that they work, but also to find out how the switches function and where they are on the dashboard.  Now is the time to ask the owner about any special features of the car and how they work.

Also, ask if the owner if he or she has the owner’s manual.  If you have any concerns about the accessories and do not know the cost of the repair, you may want to consult some mechanics before you consider the car further.  It can be surprisingly expensive to repair accessories!

-Ratchet Robbie


Need traffic school, but don’t have time for a classroom course?  Why not try online traffic school?

With online traffic school, you never have to make time in your busy schedule for a defensive driving class after work or on the traffic woman
Online traffic school gives you 100% flexibility by allowing you to take your traffic safety course anytime you have access to the Internet.  That means that you can log-on with your smartphone and finish up a section on driver safety during your 15-minute break or complete the whole course while you watch TV!

 So if you’re interested in the easy, painless way of getting your defensive driving courses out of the way, choose online traffic school!

To find the best online traffic school course in your state, visit the following directory:

 National Online Traffic School Directory

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