Read these 5 Used Hondas Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Used Car tips and hundreds of other topics.
Honda vehicles are well-known for their safety and reliability. When it comes to your teenager buying his/her first car, a very popular choice is a used Honda Accord. Because of Honda's great all-around ratings, they can tend to be a bit pricey, even when used. However, don't think you have to buy a tremendously recent Accord. Many satisfied teens are driving around Honda Accords from the 1980s with no problems at all. .. except perhaps the occasional squeaking suspension (an easy fix for under $75 in most areas)! In addition to the safety and reliability, Honda Accords have excellent fuel-efficiency and still run great even into the 300,000 mile mark. Just be sure your teen tends to regular oil changes and tune-ups.
Even if you've limited your used car search to widely-known, reputable manufacturers like Honda, Volvo, Subaru, or Toyota, you'll still need to bring in a mechanic you trust to inspect any vehicle you're seriously considering buying. It's not a good idea to ask your mechanic along on your shopping trip, however. Wait until you've selected the car and are just about ready to say those three words, "I'll take it."
But before you get to that point, be sure to do your homework. Check out the car's VIN online to get its background information. At the dealership, physically check tire treads, look for scratches and dents, scan the interior for rips in the upholstery, etc. Give a good look under the hood for obvious problems like cracked tubing, battery acid leaks, etc. And always take the car or truck for a test drive. This is a must. Once you've done all these things, it's fine to bring in your mechanic to run a full inspection on the car.
There are a couple of concerns used car buyers have about purchasing a used hybrid car:
As for engine/battery power and how they work in tandem, there are two different designs. Honda hybrids utilize the battery to give the gasoline engine an extra boost, while Toyota's hybrids are the opposite: the battery is used to begin moving the car, then relies on the gasoline engine to give extra power.
Either way, you can rely on a used hybrid car to perform just as well as a standard, all-gasoline vehicle. The only choice you'll have to make is which way you want the hybrid power to work: engine-to-battery or battery-to-engine.
Before you decide if a new or used car is right for you, you'll need to consider the realistic costs of each. True, new cars cost more and will most likely involve getting locked into payments, however the overall plus to buying or leasing a new car is its reliability. There are no previous owners to be concerned about, and therefore no worries that you've been misled about the car's history.
Chances are you'll probably have to arrange for payments on a used car as well, but if you do your homework before selecting your vehicle, those payments will be considerably less. As far as reliability goes, it only takes a background check of your potential purchase (on a site like carfax.com, for example) to find out what your car has been through prior to reaching the dealership's lot.
You can also save money by purchasing a used car with a high fuel-efficiency rating. A few models that top the list are the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla and the Scion xB. Although the price of a used car may seem higher than you want to spend, over time you'll save money at the pump. It all adds up.
If you buy a relatively recent model used Honda, try to get two copies of the key. Here's why: Many top-end car manufacturers, like Honda, have begun adding a microchip to the car's ignition key as an anti-theft device. If you get only one key when your purchase your used vehicle, you may find yourself out of luck when you want to keep a spare set in the house or hidden somewhere on the car for emergencies. You will be able to make copies of the key at a hardware store, but they will most likely only open doors and your trunk. In order to get another key for your vehicle, you'll have to contact the manufacturer directly. Speak with your used car dealer to see if the car you're interested in uses the microchip technology in its keys.