Many people nowadays manage to get extremely good cars at low prices from car auctions. Car auctions in California are more popular than auctions in other states since people have been aware of them since a long time and it is not hard to find friends and relatives who own cars that have been bought at auctions. In spite of the advantages of picking up cars at car auctions, many people still prefer buying from dealers because they fear that they might end up getting a car that is an absolute piece of junk. The extremely low rates at which auction cars are sold further reinforce the fact in the customer’s mind that there is something wrong with an auction car. However, this is not true, and while one should take all precautions while buying from a car auction in California or any other state, the fact that the majority of cars being sold at auctions are good ones is also true. Given below are a number of things that you should check out before bidding on a car in order to find out whether it is worth bidding for or not.
The Physical Condition Of The Vehicle: While no car auction in California will let you test drive a car, almost all of them will let you preview the cars being put up for auction a day or two before the auction. Take full advantage of the preview to start the car a number of times and to check everything ranging from the power train to the upholstery to the brakes and the paint before you decide to bid on a car. It is a good idea to take along a mechanic who will check every component of the car for you and give you an exact idea of what needs to be repaired and replaced apart from giving an outline of problem areas.
The Title: The kind of title a vehicle carries can give you a lot of information about whether you should bid for it or not. Make sure that you do not bid for a vehicle that has a junk, salvage, rebuilt or reconstructed title since this generally means that the car has been salvaged or reconstructed from a piece of junk. These might be cars that have been destroyed beyond repair in a fire, flood or accident and have been picked up from junk yards and repaired to be sold again. At the same time, avoid vehicles with titles that show ownership problems and loans and go only for titles that are “clear”.
The Vehicle History: There are a number of online services in the US that will provide you with the complete history of any vehicle based on its vehicle identification number. This history will let you know about any ownership or title problems apart from the correct mileage and accident history of the vehicle that you are interested in. Since a lot of things provided by a vehicle history service may influence your decision to buy or not to buy, never bid on a vehicle whose history you do not know at any car auction in California.