What To Do After Buying A Used Car?

Buying a used car is the most common way to get on the road. When buying a used car, there are certain things you should do right away or within 5 days after purchase. It's not only to keep yourself safe but also to keep your warranty intact in case something happens to the vehicle outside of its tenure with you. Let's see what these things are:

1) Get it inspected

Having a certified mechanic check out your new ride is probably the best thing that can happen immediately after purchase. Even if you know cars well and have every intention of being meticulous about maintenance, having another set of eyes go over all systems can't hurt. This will ensure that nothing slips through on any pre-existing issues and also spot anything new that may have been missed.

2) Change the oil and filter

This is a given for every car owner to do regularly, but it's especially important on a used car since you don't know how long it was between services or who actually did them. It could be 3k miles overdue. It doesn't hurt to check the condition of other fluids either - brake fluid, power steering, transmission, etc. You might not need to change them yet, but at least checking will give you an idea of what to expect from upcoming expenses.

3) Test all lights

This is self-explanatory. Make sure all your lights are working - high and low beams for both headlights, brake lights (including the 3rd brake light if it has one), turn signals, reverse lights, etc.

4) Put gas in it

No explanation is needed here. If you don't, you may end up stranded somewhere or limit your range to wherever you can make it with what's left in the tank. Even if there is a quarter tank left when you buy it, top off the tank and reset the trip meter since the mileage reading will be inaccurate until that's done.

5) Learn the maintenance schedule

If you have a warranty on your vehicle, this is very important and will determine what you can and cannot do yourself. Knowing when scheduled services like oil change are recommended for your make and model will save you any hassles later with manufacturer recalls or worse - not having a warranty because it wasn't serviced as required by the owner's manual.

6) Register your new car

Go to the DMV as soon as possible (the day after purchase is best), get assigned the VIN of the vehicle, register it using that number, apply for tags if needed (registration without tags is ok in some states), pay sales tax, etc. Any things that arise with registration will be easier to do now rather than later.

7) Check your insurance policy

This is one of those things that no one really likes to deal with but has to be done anyway. Look into any deductibles, coverage limits, etc., and make sure they're sufficient for you and your situation.



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