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A Lemon or a Peach?

Essay by review  •  February 27, 2011  •  Essay  •  928 Words (4 Pages)  •  742 Views

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Lemonade for $.75 a mile. That's how I felt when I bought my first used car. I had it for a week before it decided to go to car heaven. It was a "lemon," a car that has recurring mechanical problems and requires extensive or costly auto repairs. Or in my case, it dies in the middle of a highway and never starts again. I learned my lesson. Never buy another car. Just kidding, it was to be prepared the next time I wanted to buy a used car. Here are some genius ways (my ways of course) to prepare yourself to buy a used peach.

First of all, you need to find out which car is right for you. You do this by asking yourself some important questions. What car can I afford? Will it meet my current driving needs? Will it meet my future needs? While you are thinking about these questions, ask yourself some more to narrow down your choices. What are your preferences? Do you want a two-door, four-door, SUV, or station wagon? Do you want a two-wheel, four-wheel, or all-wheel drive? You need to consider the size and gas mileage of your used car. How many people do you want to fit in it, and how far do you want to go with them? Don't get a Volkswagen Bug, shove eight people in it, and decide to drive to Las Vegas on one tank of gas.

Secondly, when you have figured out which car will suit you best, you need to do some major research. Although there are many places you can buy used cars, i.e., private parties, new car dealerships, and used car lots, I will only be talking about private parties. When you are looking for a used car, look on the highly acclaimed Internet at websites such as (where I bought the car I drive now) or will look for the car you want between 10 miles and 300 miles from your zip code. In Modesto, you can always find used cars parked in the dirt lots, on the side streets, and "For Sale" posters hanging on the bulletin boards at your very own Modesto Junior College. Once you get a line on a car that you might want to buy, sign up at the website This nifty site, when you run the VIN (vehicle identification number), will tell you the history of the car you are currently interested in. will have reports of any major accidents the car has been in, or if it has been submerged under water.

Thirdly, make an appointment with the seller so you can go over the car, from bumper to bumper, with a fine-tooth comb. Your exterior checklist should consist of looking at the car on a clear sunny day, checking the paint for nicks and scratches, ripples, waves, and poorly fitted panels, dents and rust under the vehicle, the spare tire, jack and a lug wrench. Your interior checklist should consist of seats, belts, carpeting, windows (to make sure that they open and close), and all the lights should work. Afterwards, take the car for a test drive. Listen for any



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