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Used Cars: Sovel's Auto Service Advice on What to Do After You Buy

Used vehicles are certainly an economical choice for budget-conscious Novi drivers. But how can we know we're getting a good used vehicle and not just inheriting someone else's problems?

There are good used vehicles for sale in the Novi area. Vehicles are sold when families upsize, when families downsize or even when someone just wants a new ride. So the used vehicle may be just fine. But some Novi used vehicle owners sell them because they don't want to deal with developing or existing problems.

When you're considering buying a used vehicle in Novi, ask for service records. Check to see if the recommended schedules for preventive maintenance have been followed. If so, you probably have a great used vehicle on your hands. If there aren't any service records, then assume the worst.

Check the vehicle for obvious signs of problems. Kick the tires if you want to but definitely check them for uneven tread wear. This can indicate alignment problems, worn shocks or suspension issues. Listen to the engine for unusual sounds and pay attention to unexpected odors. Take the vehicle for a test drive and make a list of any concerns you might have.

If the used vehicle you're looking at is a late model vehicle with under 35,000 miles/55,000 km on it, take it to Sovel's Auto Service for an inspection. This inspection will reveal many basic or developing problems. Talk to your friendly and knowledgeable pros at Sovel's Auto Service about concerns you had on the test drive. Get a heads-up on needed repairs or maintenance.

Previously leased vehicles are often tempting to used vehicle buyers because they are generally newer models with low mileage and have been factory-cleaned. Be cautious, however. Many Novi residents who lease vehicles don't bother with preventive maintenance because they know they'll be turning the vehicles in. Again, ask for maintenance records, take the vehicle in for a full-service oil change and consult with the pros at Sovel's Auto Service about any problems the vehicle may have.

Older used vehicles are even more problematic for Novi used car buyers. Older vehicles simply come with more maintenance and repair issues than new ones. Take these in for a used vehicle inspection at Sovel's Auto Service. Usually, a seller will let you do this before you purchase the vehicle. These inspections are very thorough and will help you know what you're getting into. You'll be able to make an informed decision about your purchase. That peace of mind will make the cost of the inspection more than worth your while. It's always good auto advice for Novi drivers to purchase a Carfax report on any used vehicle. This report will let you know if the vehicle has been in a major accident and will give you a title history. You'd be surprised what used vehicle buyers have learned from those reports. Know before you buy.

Once you purchase a used vehicle, give it some tender loving care. Give it a thorough cleaning, inside and out — and don't forget the engine compartment. A good wax on the outside will make it look and feel “new.” And, of course, stay on top of preventive maintenance. Used vehicles bought in Michigan can last a good, long time if they're properly cared for. They're economical to buy and can keep on saving us money if we look after them.

Sovel's Auto Service
41425 W. 10 Mile Rd.
Novi, Michigan 48375
248-348-7337

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