The most important thing that a consumer should do before buying a used car is have an independent mechanic inspect the car or truck. A qualified inspector can help car buyers avoid vehicles with serious defects or other problems. Additionally, any minor problems identified in the inspection can help the consumer to either negotiate a better price or convince the dealership to make certain repairs or replace worn parts.
Connecticut state law requires dealership to permit independent inspections by any mechanic chosen by the consumer. Although a dealership does not have to permit the vehicle to be taken off its lot for the inspection, we recommend that consumers avoid car dealerships that refuse such a request.
The going rate for an inspection is about $100 - perhaps a little more if the mechanic has to travel to the vehicle. This relatively small investment can save a consumer thousands of dollars by enabling him or her to avoid problems that are far more expensive. A qualified inspector can also alert a consumer that a car has been previously wrecked, which coiuld make the car worth thousands of dollars less than its sale price
Many consumers think that they need not worry about the inspection if the dealership is providing them with a warranty or is selling them a service contract. But, many consumers have difficulties getting dealers or warranty companies to make repairs. And, the cost of the service contract can be many times greater than the inspection.
Consumers can save lots of money by buying a used car, but it can be a huge mistake to skimp on paying a little extra for an inspection before making a purchase.