You’re shopping for a used car. Everything looks good on the outside, the price is right, and the vehicle history report turns up nothing significant. You’ve found a great deal and you’re ready to pull the trigger. But before you do, you should have it checked over by a reputable shop or you could get burned. A big part of that inspection should be a wheel alignment, and here’s why.
A Wheel Alignment Tells a StorySpecifically, a wheel alignment can discover issues that nothing else might show you.
- A vehicle history report only tells you information that has been reported. It’s a wonderful thing, and it will tell you if a car has been in a major insurance claim, if it has a clean title, and if there are any outstanding recalls. But it can’t give you a snapshot of the car’s current mechanical condition.
- A visual inspection is a great way to tell if the outside has been taken care of. You’ll discover dings and scratches on nearly all used cars. But even a car that looks like new on the outside can have hidden issues.
- A car listing is a fantastic way of determining what options and features a car as. But even though you know the car’s build, you don’t see what’s lurking underneath.
Get a Wheel Alignment CheckWhen you’re buying a car, it’s a minor cost to get a wheel alignment check. It doesn’t mean you have to get a complete alignment or the repairs that go along with it – you’re just exposing any issues that might be hidden. And let’s face it – a private buyer or shady dealer won’t tell you the whole story.
- It tells you suspension issues. A wheel alignment will check all the suspension angles to make sure there aren’t any bent or broken parts. If there are issues you weren’t told about, think long and hard about buying the car.
- You’ll find any steering problems. Whether it’s due to abnormal tire wear or steering angles out of whack, steering problems will show up on an alignment.
- If there’s frame damage, you’ll know. A bend or kink in the frame from improperly repaired collision damage can mean a car will never drive quite right. An alignment will measure the car to discover if the frame isn’t square.