Pre Purchase Inspection
A pre purchase inspection will reduce risk when buying a new car. A thorough inspection of the core components of your car to confirm they are operating correctly. We will flag up any problems, so you have time to decide how best to fix and finance the issue. Our Experienced technician can visit the vehicle before you do, with you or via a virtual consultation.
Our Basic Checklist Includes:
Did you know that you can check a car’s mileage online? Well you can, as well as the MOT history of a car.
Check MOT History
If you take time to study the MOT history, you can see if the vehicle has failed often which could point out a poorly maintained vehicle.
Its the most important part of buying a new car for most, and where often people fall in love and forget to actually check the vehicle. Inspect panel by panel and take a really good look, wrapped cars, dirty cars, wet cars, cars at dusk or night often hide flawed paint jobs and rust. Rust could render a car unroad worthy so take little rust patches seriously. Bodywork repair is usually very expensive.
1.6 mm is the legal limit for tyre tread in the UK and the fines are expensive, plus the points. Don’t drive home on tyres that are illegal. Sometimes tyres can look fine but are in really bad shape. Take you time to inspect the tyre wall or face for cuts or bulges inside and out. Yes that’s when you gotta get down low. Check the tyre tread is above 5mm ideally otherwise you are buying tyres soon, look out for nails and screws too. You should also look out for unevenly worn tyres, eg a tyre that’s going bald on the inner edge. This would suggest the vehicle needs a wheel alignment service. Different brand tyres on each wheel are usually a huge tip off for a poorly maintained vehicle.
Check For Leaks
Here’s where things get more involved and a good check will insure you against a large bill. Your vehicle can leak in many ways. Water can leak into the vehicle, make sure the carpets are dry as well as in the boot.
The Engine can leak coolant, Oil and Air. Oil leak can be hidden by a recently washed engine. Still check the oil level, look under the car for drops of oil or the presence of a lot of oil on the sump or gearbox. Some cars have an undertray. Use a torch to check for oil sitting on the oil tray.
Coolant Leaks can be difficult to find sometimes. check the level of coolant in the reservoir and look on the floor or engine undertray. This however is best checked by a mechanic as there’s a risk of being burnt by hot coolant.
Air Leak? Well the engine needs air to breathe, many cars today have turbo chargers or complex air filter pipe work. make sure it’s all intact. Rev the engine and listen for any unexpected hissing or whooshing noises.
The Exhaust can also leak, listen to the sound of the exhaust, if it’s loud find out the reason. If it’s not an aftermarket exhaust system in reality it should be quiet. A leaking exhaust can fail an MOT.
Power Steering Leaks, Brake Fluid Leaks, Fuel Leaks are all things to look out for but best left to a mechanic.
Unless your insurance can cover a replacement windscreen, make sure the condition of the windscreen is roadworthy. chips in the areas swept by the wiper blade must be smaller than a 1p coin from memory. A cracked windscreen will fail an MOT. Whilst you’re at it, check the wiper blades and the washer fluid front and rear.
Turn on all the lights and check them all. Any blown bulbs will cost but most noteworthy what if it isn’t just the bulb? Consider the fact that electrical repair could be an unexpected cost.
Check Warning Lights
On the Instrument panel, the Engine, Air Bag, ABS, Oil, Battery lights and sometimes more will illuminate when the ignition is switched on. After the engine is started they should all go out.
Are you happy with the condition, a thorough clean can cost over £100 or quite a few hours of your precious time. Make sure all the comfort functions work, press all the buttons, make sure they feel as they should and do as they should. Some things to check are the electric windows, heated rear screen, interior fan, glove box light, 12v socket and the radio.
“At some point this page will be updated further with more tips.”
We are based in Sutton, Surrey and service areas nearby. We are happy to carry out a Pre Purchase Inspection on your behalf.
Prices from £50 for a basic check, if you are looking at a car outside of our coverage area we now offer a what’s app video call consultation from £25. Just get in touch.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. When Are The Mechanics Available To Inspect The Car?
The mechanics are available 5 days a week from 9am to 5pm. You can book an appointment online by sharing your location and car. The specific availability of the mechanics in your area will appear after you request a quote. (Prices from £70 for a basic check, if you are looking at a car outside of our coverage area we now offer a WhatsApp video call consultation from £25).
2. How Does The Pre Purchase Inspection Process work?
We will need the name, address, phone number of the seller, the Make and Model of the car after paying for our services. We contact the seller to let him/her know that you have retained our services and that our nearest inspector will be calling him/her shortly to arrange a convenient time to inspect the car. The whole process usually takes less than 72 hours.
It depends on your schedule. You can be present, and if you can’t make it to the inspection, we can go on your behalf. Even in your absence, our inspectors do the best work possible. Our service is designed to help you save time and not have to worry! We’ll do all the work and write up your report.
We inspect the whole car.
- Timing Belt?
- Oil leaks
And every other part of the car.
SP88 offers pre-purchase inspection of any vehicle in Surrey and areas around Sutton London. We are always available to inspect any vehicle before purchase. We are just a call away.
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