When you are satisfied with all of the above it is still worth having a professional vehicle inspection. The AA or RAC or Green Flag all offer  detailed inspections taking up to a couple of hours with a full report, bookings can usually be made at fairly short notice with the inspection usually being carried out with-in 72 hours and average costs of around £150 with each organisation offering it's services to non-members but with substantial discounts to members. 

An alternative are the many automotive engineers who advertise in the Yellow Pages many of whom are used by insurance companies for similar work. Their costs are generally similar but they may be able to respond a bit quicker if you're in a rush.

The cost of such a detailed and professional inspection  represents a very small proportion of the selling price of most used cars and may well save a few tears later.

With reasonable care and commonsense and using the check-list you will find a mechanically sound runner, a vendor willing to drop his price to meet the costs of the work you have just discovered or, at worst a car only fit for the scrap heap.


Abstracted from the book “Buying a Used Car” © G Benge 1997-2007

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