If you are about to purchase another car (new or pre-loved) please take the time to read this. Most of us know the normal things to look for – how much rego, tyres treads, strange noises, scratches, and the list goes on. Even for new cars there are some things that the buyer needs to be on the look out for.
Let’s start with new cars, as there is less to be worried about……. usually.
Firstly, what is the car going to be used for? This at first glance, might be a no brainer but here are a few things to consider;
When new, it’s not too hard to clean but it really needs to be kept up with as the vehicle gets older and there are certain things that will give you problems.
Child Seats -: Great for the safety of your child but on leather will probably leave marks.
Children -: We know you love them but they do have accidents – drinks etc that might get spilt, those nice sticky sweets, footmarks on the back of the seat.
General -: Sunscreen, Make Up, and even the dye from your jeans (especially on those cream leathers) will get absorbed by the leather and if they aren’t removed early or the leather is of inferior quality (there are many grades of leather) you may be left with these marks as a permanent fixture!
Carpets -: Most new small cars these days (except for the high end sports cars and some of the European vehicles) do not handle “traffic” well. The carpet tends to “fluff up” and are difficult to clean well. The larger the car generally the better the carpet with the exception of some of the cheaper people movers.
Fabrics -: Most fabrics on seats these days are pretty good, although there are a few that are difficult to clean (one that springs to mind are the seats in the X-Trail, sorry X-Trail owners!).
External -: Take a little time to check the paintwork. Most new car makers have got their act together but, a new car is not always as new as it ought to be! They do (during transport or if they are a demo) sometimes get dents, paint chips, scrapes, scuff marks etc. Always check in bright conditions wherever possible, viewing under lights will also show up imperfections more readily than cloudy weather or dappled light.
Check the spare tyre – they are often now days little more than a motor bike tyre masquerading as a car tyre! (it’s all about extra boot space).
Some ways that the above issues can be alleviated; always get fitted mats (they should throw them in with a new car) you can buy generic ones that are just as good as genuine these will always be made of better quality material than your carpets.
On the inside of your car, use leather and fabric protection and add window tint.
Applying paint protection right from the outset will provide good protection for your paintwork.
The dealers will try to sell you all of this DON’T BE FOOLED, they will try to charge you anything up to $3000 for this, sometimes more, they will also tell you that what they put on is bullet proof! We use they same technology (the only thing Car Care cannot provide is window tint unless you are in Tassie) and instead of the kid that wipes over the cars in the yard you will have a professional come out to you.
Used, Pre-owned or, if you prefer, Pre-loved cars
Obviously the above applies to the second hand car buyer and even more care needs to be taken checking the paintwork (a poor decision on this could leave you facing the prospect of a respray) Checking the paint on a pre-loved car is virtually impossible if it is not clean. Try and look along the paint (a decent pair of sunnies is crucial) look for “lines” in the paint this is likely to be indicative of repair, look for slight colour change, “orange peel” (because vehicles are now all painted by machine you will usually get a slightly more dimpled surface where a repair has been made no matter how good the spray painter is), look to see if the clear coat is peeling even the smallest bit shows that it won’t be long until you have a major problem, marks that have been left by bird poop will NOT come off by compounding it will be there for good, as well as checking the tyres also check the rims for dents scuff marks etc.TIP ON 4WD’S ALWAYS CHECK THE PASSENGER SIDE FOR SCRATCHES (when driving thru the scrub the driver tends to pay more attention to there side!)
On the inside all the things spoken about with new cars should be apparent, if you have leather seats look for the things spoken about but also cracking and scuff marks (especially the drivers seat). With the upholstery it is fairly obvious but make sure you put the seats all the way forward and back this may uncover something that might not otherwise have been seen (if it has seat covers insist on taking them off they will potentially hide not only marks but damaged upholstery), take any mats out to see what is under them, remember to look up at the the head lining, check the dash console and plastics in general people might have removed handsets or 2 way radios whatever and left holes or had them repaired, check the window tint (dog salavia can damage it and start to erode it)
If the vehicle is simply dirty don’t despair just allow for a full Car Care detail when negotiating the price!