Learn how you find smaller defects and dents in a Used Car

There’s more to checking the exterior then just doing a quick walk around the vehicle. Learn how you find smaller defects and dents!

Video transcript:

We’re back for the Carly
used car check — exterior check.

We kneel right here in front of the car.
66,000 kilometers traveled, four and a half years old, only one owner.

At the first glance everything is perfect,
but it’s often worth it to take a closer look.

Here is a scratch about ten centimeters long.
Considering the special paint of this car, it is a problem.

It has a matte effect and
you can’t simply polish it.

It will have to be painted.

I’d say with this bronze frozen metallic color,
it’s not your regular paint, so might be up to 500€ which is not cheap.

It doesn’t change anything in terms of driving ability,
but sometimes you just want a perfect vehicle.

Since we’re here anyways,
let’s look at the headlights.

Before, headlights were made of glass,
now they are made of plastic.

Basically, what it means is,

they scratch more easily or may even crack.
Also, sometimes the condensation accumulates inside.

The car is equipped with
adaptive cornering lights and xenon.

It means that the headlight replacement will cost
at least 1,500€ if you need a new part.

It is very annoying and expensive.

This part is looking good,
we shouldn’t have a problem.

Moving on to the rim.

Or rather to the
wheel-tire combination.

Simply give the rim a
rough check for damage.

Here is a small damage, probably it touched a curb a little.
Left a mark, but nothing too bad.

Again, it only affects the looks.

Can be repaired for a price of course,
but is not a big deal.

Though, if the damage is more serious
or if there are significant dents,

it obviously means that there had to be
an impact at a much higher speed to cause it.

In such case you need to pay special attention as it can be very expensive,
because such a hit could affect the steering.

The new steering for such a car is also
quite expensive and nobody wants to have to fix it.

I always take a good look through the rim
at the brake disc in such cases.

The brake disc is an indication of how long
the car has been stationary.

If it is completely rusted, the vehicle
has been standing for some time.

If the car is at the dealer, I would ask why
has it been standing around there for so long.

00:02:42,159 –> 00:02:47,120
Maybe something else is wrong with the car
or is it simply too expensive?

In this case it looks good.

If the break disc is blueish it’s an indicator
that the owner had a very sporty driving style.

That’s not necessarily ideal.

If you can see deep scratches, it is also not good.
Might need to be replaced soon.

Which is of course a problem
especially with this V8 550e.

It can be pricey.

Next check.

We take this little tool, usually everyone
has it with them to sign a sales contract.

A ballpoint pen.

We need a ballpoint pen as it
usually has a tapered tip.

We simply insert
the tip in the gap.

Move it along the gap and see if it the pen
is staying in more or less the same position.

If the gap goes wider, the tip
goes further in or vice versa.

There is always a little leeway.

Because even in the factory the car manufacturer
cannot achieve 100 percent perfection.

The gap width should not differ considerably,
but small variations are normal.

Should they diverge severely, we have
a problem and we can assume

that the fender has already
been removed or replaced.

Or something along these lines
and you should in any case ask about it.

So now we check the whole vehicle
for more scratches and dents.

First, I would check the mirrors, they are
very often damaged in an accident.

Looks good.

Okay, we have a dent here.

This part is changeable, but of course
it’s not that easy and will cost you.

To search for such little dents, it’s important
to see how light reflects off the surface.

You need to look at the reflections
in the surface from a very close angle.

When a car has a dent
the light reflects differently.

And you can then see
the edges relatively well.

Looks ok.
There it is!

So here we have three dents.

With only one that’s
a little more pronounced.

The other two are actually
barely recognizable.

But if you look really closely
you can see it.

With the rear or taillight it is the
same story as with the headlights.

Stone dent here is
rather unlikely but,

you still must check for water ingress
as there could be leaks through the gaskets here.

If water enters the taillight
and causes a defect,

these design LED lights are damn expensive
and can be very problematic.

Here is one more little thing.

There was probably a small paint damage
someone tried to repair with touch-up pencil.

It’s almost worse now
than before this “repair”.

Good thing is that petrol tank lid is changeable,
but all of this costs money.

I think the vehicle will find a satisfied buyer
and a happy new owner.

I hope the video
was helpful for you.

With that I am wishing
you all a great drive!

Want to find out more? Watch other videos from the Used Car Check series:

Used Car Check Part 1: Engine Compartment
Used Car Check Part 2: Carly Universal Adapter & App
Used Car Check Part 3: Interior

The Carly Used Car Check feature works with the following brands: BMW, Mini, Audi, Skoda, Volkswagen, Seat, Toyota, Lexus, Mercedes, Renault, and Porsche. Whether it works for your specific car depends on the model and build year.