Part 7 - Let's take a drive

Story by Ming Jie
16 Apr 2010
 

Take a test drive before buying a used car. It'll give you a feel of what the car is like.

Round the block

After inspecting with your eyes, it is time to take the car out for a spin to test out its mechanical bits. Remember to go slow as you get used to the car.

The first thing to do is to check that the engine starts properly without any prolonged cranking. Anything more than 3 seconds and you should probably walk away. Difficulty to start a car might be attributed to a weak battery or faulty starter motor. However, it can also be an indication of more serious engine issues.

After the engine has warmed up sufficiently, it should be idling around 850rpm. Disengage the transmission and get someone to step on the accelerator hard a few times and check that the car is not spewing any blue smoke.

Brakes
Before you start the car, step on the brake pedal. After the car has started up, you should feel the brake pedal depress if it has power or served brakes. Step on it hard now and if the pedal sinks much further, there could be something wrong with the master cylinder.

During normal driving, as you brake, take note of any vibrations. This could mean that the brake disc could be warped and might need replacement. Listen for any screeching noise as well when braking, this indicates that the brake pads might be worn.

Transmission

Automatic Transmission
The first thing to test for an automatic transmission car is engagement time between the shifting and the gears engaging. It is normal for most automatics to have a slight delay when changing between gears. However, this delay should not be longer than 1 second. If the delay is long, it indicates a transmission problem.

To test, first step on the brake pedal and shift the transmission to "D" or Drive. The shifting should be smooth and not accompanied by any major jerks. Some minor jerking is fine though.

Now as you take the car out for a drive, check that the car accelerates smoothly and the gear changes smoothly and accordingly. If there is any shudder or delay in the shifting, it indicates that the transmission could be worn out. Also, if a gear refuses to up-shift on a level road, it could also mean that the transmission is faulty.

Also, beware of slipping. This means that the gearbox's torque converter is dodgy and the engine's torque does not transmit properly to the drive shafts. You will know this when you step on the accelerator hard and the engine rpm goes up but the speed remains the same.


Sell Fast With Ease - SwiftQuote

With SwiftQuote, you get:
  Best value for your car    A peace of mind when selling    Fast sale from start to end

HIGHEST PRICE FOR YOUR CAR

Best offer with no obligations.
Start Now!

Justin was super helpful and helped me really pushed for a better price. His hardwork, prompt replies and dedication was ultimately what pushed me over to swiftquote compared to other bidding websites.

Gabriel Tang - 3 days ago

It was a very smooth transaction and a very straightforward deal. I've also received a good support from Justin on my enquiries.

Mohammad Adil - 4 days ago

Fast, efficient, honest and great to deal. An extremely satisfying experience, would definitely recommend family and friends to try this out.

Poh Chee Chau - 1 week ago

Fast and efficient platform as compared to the others.

KOH WEN DEE - 1 week ago

The online experience is pretty fuss free. The friendly customer service personnel help to sort the process out.

Arthur Ong - 1 week ago

The SwiftQuote app gives the best price for your selling car and quick responses to customer, good experience with them. Bravo !!

wang soh chain - 1 week ago

The Swiftquote team (Charlie & Justin) have been very helpful & professional and the transaction of selling my 7-year old car has been completed successfully. Kudos to the team. Russell Lim

Russell Lim - 2 weeks ago

Straight forward and cash payment. No worry at all.

Teo Guan Hoe - 2 weeks ago

Smooth transaction with the dealer and price offered for my car was reasonable!

Zailani Asral - 2 weeks ago

Fast and smooth transaction. Excellent service.

Zulkifli Bin Md Hashim - 2 weeks ago