When you purchase a used car, you need to keep in mind more than just whether you like it and the price is right for your budget. You need to make sure the car is in good working condition and that it won’t fail you as soon as you drive away.

If you’re looking at a used vehicle, here are some things you need to keep in mind:

Used Car Exterior Checklist

  • Windshield free of cracks
  • Trunk and driver-side door lock and unlock with a key
  • Hazard lights work properly
  • Directional signals and headlights, including high beams, work properly
  • Body panel colors match
  • A magnet adheres to all steel body panels
  • Paint job is in good condition
  • Seams where the trunk and hood close are aligned
  • Doors and fenders are properly aligned
  • Body is free of scratches and dents
  • Headlights and directional lights are intact and fully functional
  • Tires are a reputable brand name
  • All tires are from the same brand
  • Tires are free of any cuts, bubbles, or cracks
  • Spare tire, jack, and lug wrench are included and functional
  • Spare tire is inflated

Engine & Suspension Checklist

  • Free of fluid or oil leaks
  • Oil filler neck doesn’t have a coat of thick, black tar
  • Battery is free of corrosions
  • Oil stick is free of dark, black oil
  • Engine is free of odors while running
  • Exhaust pipe emission is clear
  • Vehicle’s rest is level
  • No creaking noises when bouncing inside the car
  • All corners respond the same when bouncing

Transmission Checklist

Automatic Transmission

  • Fluid looks clean, not dirty or gritty
  • Transmission neither slips nor delays when driving

Manual Transmission

  • Each gear shifts smoothly
  • No grinding noises when in reverse

Brakes & Steering Checklist

  • Vehicle steers straight and doesn’t pull to one side when braking
  • Parking brake engages and disengages freely
  • Brake pedal and/or steering wheel doesn’t shake when brakes are applied
  • Wheels don’t lock when applying anti-lock brakes
  • Vehicle doesn’t drift to one side or the other
  • Vehicle is stable with no shaking or vibrations
  • No resistance in the steering wheel when turning
  • No clicking or clunking when turning

Used Car Interior Checklist

  • Seats are unworn and free of cracks
  • All doors open and close freely
  • Trunk opens and closes freely
  • All gauges work
  • No dashboard warning lights
  • Infotainment system works
  • A/C works
  • Heater works
  • Windshield wipers and fluid all work
  • All seats adjust properly and have functional seatbelts
  • Power windows operate properly
  • Sunroof/moonroof work
  • Car alarm works

Miscellaneous Checklist

  • Car manual is located in the glove box (when applicable)
  • Instructions are included for any accessories
  • Service and repair records are available
  • The owner has the title

Used Car Sales in Frederick, MD

If you’re looking to purchase a used car, don’t just go anywhere! Trust the team at Stup’s Auto to help you find the used car that’s right for you and will serve you well for years to come. Visit our lot to see what we have in stock!

Parts, Service, Collision Center & Body Shop, Towing, Salvage