What are some things to know before buying your first car?

I just got my license and I am searching for a car. I dont need anything fancy; just something to get me from point a to point b, reliable on gas and not really high on miles (under 140k). Any tips for a new buyer like where to look for used cars, best cars for newcomer, etc..?

Best Answer:

History_Buff: Research any vehicle you are interested in for reliability ratings to see if it is reliable. Do more research on the car until you have a full understanding of it's pros and cons. Some cars will be very reliable one year and then be unreliable the very next year. Once you settle on a car you like and can afford take it to a trusted mechanic and have them go over the car. The $50-100 you pay them will be money well spent. This will go a long way to prevent you from getting a money pit. Also ask to see the Carfax on any car you are buying. If it has a salvage title walk away. If it has over 3 owners walk away. Here is a great website for research. http://www.truedelta.com

Other answer:

History_Buff:
– How the car has been treated is more important than the mileage. A car with 60K miles with maybe one oil change in its life and the original tires in their original positions is likely going to have far more problems than a car with 200K miles that has been meticulously cared for over its life.

– Because of that when evaluating a car, check records, learn what to look for when inspecting (especially fluids and tires), look for signs to determine whether the owner took care of it or treated like a disposable trash bin and ask questions. As a final step when buying a used car arrange to have a mechanic do a pre-purchase inspection before buying.

-When you find a car you think you'd like to buy, contact your insurance company for a quote to make sure there aren't any surprises there.

– When you buy one learn how to take care of it and remember to keep improving your driving.

Dances with Weed:
Just make sure it runs good, has no leaks, misfires, rough idling etc. Transmission shifts well without jerking….no grinding sounds(ticking is OK…just about every car ticks). Also the better the maintenance history the better.
Have it looked at by a moderator chanic if possible(pre purchase inspection or whatever it may be called in your area).
Mfrazerburg87:
Make sure what your buying is definatly a car, best way to spot this is that's it'll have 4 wheels, if it has 4 legs it's a horse and you'll have the same problem I did.
g:
Only consider the purchase of any used vehicle which has a clear title, current registration, and the seller can show you proof of all full and complete service and maintenance records. Secondly, you can easily find out what the current market value of any vehicle you are considering here:

http://www.edmunds.com/appraisal/