imageimageimageimageCheck for loud knocks from engine possibly less when engine under load during acceleration, could be signs of big end wear.
Loud tapping coming from top of engine could be signs of cam shaft wear.
Check all lights on dash board such as ABS/AIRBAG are working and go out after a few seconds.
Make sure no injector or service lights are on and that air bag light is off and that its’ within the dates before renewal.
Check seat belts are all in order (No nicks/Tears) and work right.
Check the braking system by pressing the brake pedal down with the engine turned off, the pedal should go hard after two presses and stay hard.
Start the car the brake pedal should move slightly but not go to floor, if it does either with the car running or not it means there is a fluid leak either in a brake cylinder or the slave cylinder or brake pipes.
Check the fluid reservoirs for correct brake fluid and power steering fluid levels.
Check for oil leaks around the rocker cover and for fuel leaks around spi or multi point injection units.
Make sure all warning lights like battery or oil lights go out on start up.
Check flashers and all lights works including brake lights.
Test drive it if possible and check for vibration under breaking, this could indicate worn brake discs and worn suspension.
Check engine performance is it what you would expect from such a car . is there any misfire or hesitation or judder when pulling a way in first gear this could mean a new clutch is needed or the clutch plate contaminated with oil meaning an oil seal is worn.
Check for steering wobble after about 40 mph this could indicate poorly balanced wheels or worn suspension parts.
Check braking ability.
Check all gears are easy engaged and check for clutch slip by finding a good upward slope and using 4th or 5th gear at low speed about 20mph and pushing accelerator to the floor. If engine revs on without extra speed the clutch is slipping .
Make sure no large cracks are visible in windscreen in any area. These soon spread and are not usually noticed untill later.
Check all light covers are crack free and hole free.
Check that the carpets are dry inside the foot wells.
Check for rust around wheel arches and sills.
Make sure all bumpers are secure and if possible check subframe mounts for signs of rust or corrosion too.
Make sure all windows open and close and all door locks including boot and hatchback all work too.
Check wiper operation front and rear including washer.
Make sure if possible that it starts from cold ok.
and that it restarts when warm.
Check that it ticks over when warm and cold.
If you cant make sure of all theses things then the most important is of course the brakes and engine are in good order.
Remember old cars have old problems and will get new problems.
Dont bid if unless you have the full facts. Its your money and no matter how much or little you pay you deserve to get what is in the description.
But beware, a car that is for sale that says good starter may just be a good starter and nothing else.
I hope this helps you and does not put you off finding a bargain or the car of your dreams.


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