4 Things to Do When Test Driving a Used Car

Posted Friday, Nov 28, 2014 by nhtwpprod

Test-driving is one of the most important steps when shopping for a Los Angeles used car. Taking a car for a drive before you buy it lets you know that a car fits your needs and doesn’t have any obvious flaws or defects. When you schedule a test drive with a used car dealership in Los Angeles, be sure to take the following steps to make sure that you learn everything you need to know about the car:

  1. Be Sure to Include Highways and On-Ramps – If your test drive only takes the car on city streets, then you’re not getting the full experience of the car. Chances are that, if you buy it, you’ll be taking in on freeways and having to merge with oncoming traffic, and you’ll want to know that the car handles high speeds and differing road conditions as well as it does regular roads. Be sure that your test drive route includes as many as possible different conditions that you are likely to drive on a regular basis.
  2. Bring the Kids – If you have kids, be sure to bring them along for the test drive and have them try out all the seats that they’ll be riding in if you take the car home with you. How a car feels for the driver isn’t the only important thing about it; it needs to be comfortable for the passengers, too. Have the kids (and anyone else who is going to be a regular passenger) come along on the test drive with you, and have them give their feedback. Are the seats comfortable? Do they have legroom? Is there anything iffy about the car that they notice from where they’re sitting? Get as much of this information from them as possible.
  3. Have Every Driver Try Out the Car – Many households have more than one person who regularly drives a car, and you’ll want to make sure that everyone who does is happy and comfortable with the one you choose. Schedule your test drive for a time when everyone who is likely to drive the car can make it, and have all of them take turns behind the wheel. This will make sure that everyone is happy with the car, and will give you multiple perspectives that may bring up things that you didn’t notice by yourself.
  4. Test Drive More Than One Car – The best way to know if a car is right for you is to compare it to others. If you only test drive one car before you make your decision, then you don’t know how it compares to other available models, or if another car fits your needs better. While test driving every car that catches your eye isn’t a good use of your time, trying out two or three different models will give you a good idea of what’s available and what you are looking for. Consider your options, narrow it down to a few choices, and then take the time to try all of them.

Beyond these 4 steps, be sure to check the car’s headlights and turn signals, make sure that the doors and trunks open and close well, and that there are no other obvious problems with it. By following these steps, you’ll know that you’ve done your due diligence in selecting the right used car for you and your family.