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A mechanic inspecting a second-hand vehicle.

Should You Get A pre-purchase inspection of a Second-Hand Vehicle Before You Buy It?

Got your heart set on a beautiful new second-hand car? Before you write that cheque, make sure you book a pre-purchase inspection.

Buying a new car can be both exciting and stressful. There’s nothing better than that new car feeling, but there’s also nothing worse than taking a gamble on such a major purchase. Even if you’re opting for a second-hand vehicle, you’re likely putting up thousands of dollars (if not tens of thousands!). So, you want to be confident you’re getting a reliable vehicle in return for your hard-earned money.

Are pre-purchase inspections worth it?

Chances are you’re reading this because you’re currently asking yourself this question: “should I get my second-hand vehicle checked by a mechanic before I buy it?

The short answer: yes!

A pre-purchase inspection and online vehicle history check is the quickest way to weed out a lemon. You hear all kinds of horror stories of vehicles breaking down in the first month of ownership, undisclosed accidents coming to light later, and poor quality parts failing. 

Think of these as lessons in avoiding a dodgy purchase. It can be easy to fall victim to a too-good-to-be-true deal on your own, but it’s impossible when you’ve got the support and expertise of a licensed mechanic on your side.

5 reasons to get that second-hand car inspected before you buy it

1. A second opinion never hurts.

Think of it this way – the best case scenario is that the inspection proves to be a phenomenal investment because it turns out the vehicle isn’t a sound purchase and you avoid blowing thousands of dollars on an unreliable car. The worst case scenario is that the mechanic confirms the vehicle’s quality and reliability, and you can go into the transaction with total confidence and peace of mind. It’s a win-win situation when it comes to pre-purchase inspections.

2. Mechanics know what to look out for.

While you’re looking for surface-level signs of damage, like dents, scratches and mismatching panelling, a mechanic knows exactly what could be hiding below the surface of a second-hand car. So unless you’re an automotive expert yourself, you’ll never know for sure if a car is as good as it sounds (or if it’s even in the condition the seller claims it is).

3. You wouldn’t let just anyone service your car

So why would you let just anyone sell it to you? Vehicles are valuable assets that should be treated with care and expertise. If you wouldn’t trust yourself to properly service your own vehicle (or a stranger for that matter), you probably shouldn’t be the one making the final call on whether it’s a sound purchase. Never trust anyone less than an expert.

4. You’ll know for sure it’s been in a major accident

No matter how good the repair job is, there are always tell-tale signs of an accident, and it’s a mechanic’s job to spot them. Accidents can have lasting effects on your vehicle – even if everything appears to be running smoothly – which is why you should get a pre-purchase inspection in addition to an online vehicle history check.

5. A mechanic can advise you on a vehicle’s past AND future

Not only will a mechanic provide you with their expert opinion on whether a vehicle is – and has been maintained in – excellent condition, but they can also advise you on what future maintenance and expenditure you can expect. Take our mechanics for example. They live and breathe premium European vehicles and as such know exactly what kind of maintenance to expect with every make and model. This kind of knowledge can prove priceless when making decisions about what vehicle you’ll drive next.

Any good mechanic will tell you that their job is to ensure the vehicle you’re buying is not only what it purports to be, but also that it’s suited to your needs, is mechanically sound, financially accurate, and won’t deliver any unexpected expenses in the near future.

In Brisbane, our Accelerate Automotive mechanics are the best team for the job. European cars are our specialty, so if you’re looking to buy one, let us conduct a comprehensive inspection so you have peace of mind that your car will go the distance.

Click here to book your pre-purchase inspection.