One of the most important things to do before buying a used car is to do a test drive. After you've thoroughly scrutinized the exterior and the interior, go for a test drive.
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Start by feeling how comfortable the car is. Will it be comfortable for all passengers? If you often have people in the back seat, be sure to get in and out of the back seat with ease, especially for the elderly. If you have small children, take a car seat with you and make sure it sits well in the back.
Check the view from inside the car. Can you easily see through all the windows? Check the driver's seat to make sure it is comfortable and that the seat buttons are working properly. Check all power windows and seats and mirrors, cruise control buttons, and steering wheel settings.
Turn on the heating and air conditioning and make sure everything is working properly. Check the AC first and it should blow cool air in less than a minute if it works properly.
Start the car and make sure it starts easily. After driving, test the transmission, making sure it shifts easily and, if it's a manual transmission, the clutch works smoothly.
Whether you are buying from a private dealer or a used car dealer, you should have a mechanic inspect the car for problems.