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Buying a used car: pre-purchase inspection

Helpful tips from Don’s Pro Tech Automotive


April 24, 2021

Buying a brand new car may be simpler than buying a used car. We can reasonably expect a new car to be trouble-free from the start, with no hidden issues to surprise us in the short term. A new car warranty provides further peace of mind in the event a problem does arise. Of course, this reliability comes at a cost. After just a few years, that new car will lose a significant portion of its value.

Used cars are typically more affordable and can save drivers money over the long haul. Don’s Pro Technology Automotive Repair (DPT), a NAPA AutoCare Center, performs pre-purchase inspections to help used-car shoppers make a wise choice.

So what’s the secret to buying a great used car, one that will operate safely and reliably as expected? One very important step any used car buyer should take is getting a pre-purchase inspection from a qualified mechanic. DPT performs multi-point inspections every day.

Cars break down over time. DPT performs a 120-point inspection to identify any problems or signs of potential problems in the future. The bumper-to-bumper inspection, at $132, includes a detailed inspection of everything from tires, to fluids to power window switches.

The DPT technicians do not recommend immediately fixing every problem. Instead, potential issues are broken down into four categories to prioritize repairs in a way that fits an owner’s budget.

• Problems that compromise safety take priority. To keep everyone safe on our roads, DPT recommends that any safety-related issue – like bad tires or brakes – be addressed immediately.

• Not all automotive issues are equal. Some do not require immediate attention. But remember, neglecting them too long could result in increasing repair costs.

• Creature comforts come next. These issues include an inoperable power window or a minor oil leak and don’t affect the primary function of the vehicle. In some cases, what some call a creature comfort could be a necessity to others. An elderly driver in his home state of Arizona, for instance, may depend on properly functioning air conditioning.

• The “keep an eye on it” items. No car is perfect. Vehicles may have issues that cause no imminent danger and have no potential for accelerating repair costs; these are the lowest priority.

The DPT technicians suggest that the true value of a car depends on how useful it is and how long it will last. If it will suit your needs but only for a short time, it doesn’t offer much value. The same is true if it lasts but isn’t practical for your needs. Used car shoppers need vehicles that will both serve their needs and last as expected.

Before you buy your next used car, have a qualified mechanic inspect it. A pre-purchase inspection by a qualified mechanic could save you thousands in the long run. The DPT technicians are happy to help you make an informed decision on your next purchase of a used vehicle. You will be able to make a wiser car-buying decision with the helpful advice of a professional. DPT is located at 230 E. Tehachapi Blvd., Tehachapi. Call the shop for an appointment at (661) 822-1600.


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