Last updated on October 10th, 2023 at 05:29 pm

While buying a new car, the test drive is one of the essential tasks. You can not avoid this when you buy a used vehicle too. Without testing the driving speed and flexibility, you must not buy the car. If you are confused about how to test drive a used car, here is the solution for you. 

The article has all the necessary information about buying a second-hand car. 

In addition, the tips and tricks of taking a test drive. You will not be doubtful anymore after reading this. 

You can think of missing the test drive part; it can bring long-term damage.

Related Search – Used Car Buying Tips: How to Get the Best Deal Negotiating For A Used Car?

How to Test Drive a Used Car

Here, we will give you some suggestions that will help you to test drive a used car. Let’s take a look-

Step 1: Be comfortable

If the car does not feel comfortable, there is no point in buying it. So, you have to check the comfort level while taking the test drive. 

  • Take the driver’s seat
  • Adjust the height at your convenience. 
  • Then, fix all settings of the car. 
  • To minimize disruption, switch off the radio. 

Step 2: Make a strategy

Make a list of places you want to test drive the used car. Drive the car in situations, even on rough road surfaces, to check how it handles the areas.

Step 3: Look for unusual sounds

Try to be attentive during the test drive. If you have access to a roadway, take note of the unusual sounds of the vehicle. Meanwhile, cars may generate loud sounds due to bigger tires.

Step 4: Examine the Exterior

You should thoroughly inspect the used car before the test drive. Examine the car body to check its color consistency.

  • Uneven paintwork indicates that the collision was not properly done.
  • Examine the tires. 
  • Switch on the headlights and inspect from the outside of the car.
  • Check all of the lights are on. If they’re flashing from bright to faint, it could indicate an electrical problem.
  • Look beneath the surface for indications of liquid flowing from a leakage of the car.
  • You may test this car bonnet to see whether it is hot.

Step 5: Test the Car Interior 

  • Ensure that the car door locks– windows are operating smoothly without creating any unusual noises. 
  • Examine leakage on the ceiling of the inner part.
  • Make sure that you can fasten the seat belts securely. 
  • The seat belts should be unfastened if you press the release button.

Step 6: Switch off the radio

  • Keep off the radio until you’re reviewing it. 

Step 7: Check the Air condition system

  • Switch off the air conditioner as well. 
  • Yet, keep the windows open. It will allow you to notice weird sounds. 
  • Differentiate the sounds of the air and the sounds coming from tires though it’s hard for experts to detect the sounds.
  • When you find a weird sound, separate it by adjusting the speed or altering the stations.
  • If the car isn’t moving, it’s because the AC is putting a lot of strain on the engine.

Step 8: Check the Car Engine

  • Look for wear or streaks on an engine that may indicate a breach.
  • Make sure that the fuel level of the used car does not drop substantially.
  • Inspect the connectors for any corrosion.
  • If you get any clattering noises, it implies the engine is rapidly heating up. This system will then create a problem.
  • Look for blue or black exhausts. It may signal a faulty engine.

Read this to learn – New VS Used Car: Important Facts You Should Know Before Buying One

Step 9: Test the brakes

Breaks are the essential part of the car which you have to check. If the breaks are stuck and not smooth, you must avoid buying the vehicle. 

  • Examine the brakes in a location away from traffic.
  • Check if the brakes are fading, shuddering, or vibrating while driving.
  • Check the brake pedal to check whether it requires a lot of pressure to operate.

Lastly, tell the seller about your worries.

Step 10: Test the suspension

  • Now check how the suspension works whenever driving over bumps or rocky surfaces. Listen closely.
  • Does the car gets shake at high speed? 
  • Do you face severe suspension difficulties?
  • Examine the front and rear suspension together. When the car is filled, move in open areas to see whenever they press the tires. If this suspension collides with the tires, it may lead to a tire burst. 

If the issue becomes serious, inform the seller to rectify it.

Step 11: Evaluate the Power Steering System

Another necessary checking you will need to do is the power steering system evaluation. 

  • Check the steering wheel to notice if it vibrates. 
  • Move the wheel to detect whether the steering wheel is loose or tight. 
  • Broken steering will create a sound and provide resistive input.
  • Step Check for other issues.
  • Moreover, check if the bonnet and trunks shut firmly or not.
  • Inspect its wireless connectivity to ensure that they work effectively.

Step 12: Assess the Car Battery

The car battery provides sufficient electricity to a car engine. High heat has an impact on the battery’s function. Hence, monitoring it will guarantee that it works whenever you want.


Your first car can be a used car, though it will not decrease the car’s importance in your life. You have to check every detail while you buy the car. 

To start, you have to take the test drive. Lastly, you should know; how to test drive a used car. We are here to clear your confusion. From the article, you must have seen the list. 

It includes the things you must check while taking the test drive. We wish you all the best for a lifelong companionship with the car. A used automobile can never be an obstacle to enjoying your first drive. 

More to explore – The Pros And Cons Of New Or Used Cars