Certified Used Cars
by Pat Goss
Buying a used car these days is very very different than it was a few years ago. One of the things that you have to be extremely careful of is buying a used car from an individual. That is not a smart thing to do in a lot of cases.
Well, let's say you decide to buy from a licensed dealer, that means that once you get to a dealership, you're probably going to be faced with a decision to buy a CPO, that's a certified preowned car, or a non CPO car. Now, there's some questions that you have to ask. Number one, who is certifying the car? Is it the vehicle manufacturer, or is it the dealership? If it's the dealership, you may be getting nothing at all, other than the word certified. The manufacturer in most cases has a long check list, often 150 to 200 items, on the car, that's going to be checked, and has to be signed off by a technician who has been approved by the manufacturer.
They're going to check all the stuff under the hood of the car, that affects reliability, and the way the car performs, and things like that. They're also going to raise the car up in the air, they're going check brakes and tires and exhaust and suspension and steering. All of these different items that can and will wear out on a car. They're also going to check the accessories, to make sure that the power seats work, and all these different things. Once all of this is done, they're going to give a certification for that car.
And that's where you have to do some comparison shopping. What are you getting, and how much are you paying for what you're getting in that certification. It might make sense in some cases, where the certified car costs enough extra that you could buy a non certified one that has a warranty on it, and buy an extended warranty that actually saves money. So you have to ask questions, and you have to shop. But, keep in mind that manufacturer certified preowned vehicles are often one of your better choices when it comes to buying a used car.