For most people, purchasing a car is already a nerve-wracking experience. But, when the car in question is bought at auction, the stress is amplified. Buying a car at auction offers buyers reliable cars at a low price. While buying a reliable car at a low price certainly has its benefits, one of the main issues that most auction buyers have is verifying whether or not the car runs properly. Buying a car at a car auction means that buyers need to rely on their own visual inspection of the vehicle, as there is no other way to inspect the car before buying it. The below tips are useful in making the right decision at auction.
Look for Paint Overlay
One sure way to know that the car has gone through some form of repair is to look for paint overspray. Paint overspray is when the seller of the car has spray painted the entire vehicle or only the portions that have gone through repairs. The best way to notice this is to look for mismatched colors, uneven paint, and a non-quality finish over the color of the car. When purchasing a car at auction, choosing one without paint overlay is best as overspray tends to chip and come off easily.
Sheet Metal Repairs
Sheet metal is one of the cheapest ways to repair a damaged car that is suffering from some serious rust problems. When at auction, as you visually inspect the vehicle, look for repairs that have been performed with sheet metal. To install the sheet metal, the car owner formed a new piece of the car with the sheet metal and installed it using drills and liquid metal. In addition, Bondo filler is also placed on the car to keep the sheet metal intact and to hide any gaps. If you notice that an unusual patch of metal on the car, chances are sheet metal is the reason why.
Scored Brake Discs
When purchasing a car, you want to check that the brakes are also operating properly. While you cannot take the car for a test drive, you can visually inspect the brake discs. To do so, you should look at the brake pad through the space on the wheel. If it looks worn down, then the disk is no good. If you do happen to purchase the car, you’ll also notice that the brake pads are worn down if the car makes a screeching sound when you press the brakes.
Lastly, other tips are to check the VIN on the windshield and doors to make sure they match, don’t take the car at face value – always expect that some repairs have been made, know the car values before bidding, and also remember that not all dents or scratches mean that the car is in bad shape. Also, keep in mind that when buying a car at action, there is never a guarantee that you’re going to get what you see. For that reason, watch other bidders and if they stay away from a certain vehicle, you probably should too.