We Repair All Makes & Models!

Red McCombs Body Shop in San Antonio, Texas
“Lifetime Warranty”


4800 NW Loop 410, San Antonio, TX 78229
Hours: Monday-Friday 7:30am to 6:00pm. Saturday & Sunday closed

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The Key To A Successful Test Drive

Apr 24, 2023

One of the most crucial steps when buying a used car is taking it for a thorough test drive. Whether you’re purchasing from a private party, an independent used car dealer, or a trustworthy dealership like Red McCombs Superior Body Shop.  A test drive can help you determine if the vehicle is the right fit for your needs and budget. To make the most of your evaluation, U.S. News advises car shoppers to follow these steps before, during, and after their test drive.

Does It Fit Your Budget

Before you even consider test-driving a car, it’s essential to make sure it fits your budget. Talk to local lenders or apply for financing online to get a pre-approved loan offer. This will give you a clear idea of how much you can spend on a used car.

Investigate the Car’s History

It’s also a smart idea to obtain a vehicle history report from companies such as Carfax or Autocheck. This report can alert you to any red flags in the car’s history, such as accidents or other issues, and help you make an informed decision before taking it for a drive.

Pop The Hood

During the test drive, it’s not just about driving the car, but also thoroughly inspecting it while it’s parked. Check all the car’s systems, make sure everything listed as a feature is present, and ensure that the car meets your needs in terms of space and storage. Bringing along a trusted friend or family member can provide an additional set of eyes and ears to identify any potential issues and offer objective feedback.

Using all your senses, except for taste, of course, pay close attention to the car’s exterior and interior. Look for any uneven paint that may indicate poorly repaired collision damage, check for leaks or fluids dripping underneath the car, and inspect the tires for wear and matching brands. If you have a child seat or pet carrier that you plan to use in the car, bring it along to ensure it fits properly and the seat belts or LATCH anchors are in good condition.


Drive Mindfully

When you start the car, pay attention to any strange noises, smell of the exhaust, and check that all the lights are working. If you notice any issues that may be dangerous or indicate a deeper problem, do not drive the vehicle. Your safety should always be a top priority.

Finally, don’t rush through the test drive process. Take your time and evaluate the vehicle to make sure it checks all of your boxes before making a purchase. Happy car hunting!

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