Working with used car dealers can feel like a gamble. If you arm yourself with information before you even get to dealership, you’re making it more likely that you end up with the car you want. A quality dealership will always have a history report and carry certified used cars for sale. In the case that they don’t, test drive the vehicle and listen for these sounds. Don’t be afraid to mention them to the salesperson.
– Humming or growling when driving down the road: This can signal that the car needs new wheel bearings, which can result in you being stranded and/or a costly repair.
– Squealing noise: A chirping or squealing coming from under the car’s hood can signal the need for a new serpentine belt, which can run you a pretty penny if you purchase the car.
– Rattling or rumbling noises: Both of these can signal issues with the exhaust. Depending on the specific issue, exhaust repairs can run you up to $1,500. When the exhaust system is working correctly, there shouldn’t be any jarring noises.
– Squealing while braking: This can mean that the brake rotors need to be resurfaced. If this is just the case for one of the brakes, you can expect to pay up to $400 for a repair. Make sure that the dealer fixes this issue before you drive the car off the lot.
– Grinding when you hit the brakes: This can mean that the car is need of new brake pads, rotos, and/or calipers. This is a routine part of car maintenance, and it should be taken care of by the dealership before you agree to purchase the vehicle.
Listening to these sounds will give you insight to the cars condition and give you the upper hand at the dealership that may not carry certified used cars. Inspecting a used vehicle before you buy is always very important. Arm yourself with this knowledge and you will walk away happy with your new pre-owned vehicle.