Peterson Auto Sales

Test Drive Checklist

Outside the Used Car

  • Look for major dents and signs of accidents
  • Inspect the trunk and spare tires for wear
  • Check worn tires and uneven tread wear
  • Observe smoothness of springs and shock absorbers. Don't be afraid to press down on the back end of the used car)
  • Test operation of doors and windows
  • Look for leaking fluids underneath the used car
  • Obverse that the car lights function properly
  • Check for even gaps where used car hood, doors, fenders and trunk meet
  • Inspect for recent paint ("overspray" or non-matching paint)

The Used Car Engine

  • Look for signs of leaks and overheating (moist seals and discoloration)
  • Check oil level and color
  • Inspect battery cables
  • Inspect radiator for cracks and oil or rust in coolant
  • Observe the used car's start up - expect a smooth, smokeless start

Inside the Car

  • Look for excessive wear or damage to seats and pedals
  • Test operation of dashboard lights, windows and accessories
  • Start the used car's engine and check operation of all power accessories
  • With engine running, observe the operation of gauges
  • Sit in each seat (make sure your passengers will have a comfortable ride!)

The Road Test

  • Let the used car warm up before driving
  • Adjust mirrors and seat positions
  • Make sure you can adjust your seat to a comfortable position
  • Listen for a smooth acceleration and transmission shifting
  • Check brakes at different speeds, but be sure not to abuse the car
  • Test the ease of steering and vehicle control at both parking lot and driving speeds

Research Your Used Car Purchase

What features are going to be most important for your lifestyle and for your enjoyment? Think about what features and options are worth paying for: CD and DVD player, anti theft devices or a sunroof? Remember that safety, convenience, resale value and gas mileage are also important to take into consideration when you are buying. Realistically determine how much you can afford. This includes payments, gasoline and insurance.

Also, do research to ensure you get a fair price. Always compare prices by checking out Kelly Blue Book, Edmunds, National Automobile Dealers Association, KSL or AutoTrader. Don't forget to ask for a CarFax report. This will give you information about a used car's history. Remember, CarFax used vehicle history reports are free at Peterson Auto.

We Buy Cars Follow Peterson Auto on Facebook Gephardt Approved


Peterson Auto is the best! We very recently bought a car from them and we couldn't be happier! If you are thinking about checking these guys out to buy a car, you should definitely do it! They helped us out more than anyone else and there was absolutely no pressure at all.

- Danny Pitt

Thank you so much for all your help. I love my car ! And could not have asked for a better car dealership to buy it from ! You guys are an amazing company and i will be sure and send people your way. Thank you again you rock!

- Maigan Healey-Bean

Just wanted to stop by and say thanks again for helping me with my new car! You are all so nice and friendly I will for sure come again with any car needs I may have.

- Jasmine Aquirre
Accredited Member of the Better Business Bureau
2013 Hyundai Elantra GLS
2011 Buick Regal CXL RL1
2007 Cadillac Escalade EXT
2014 Dodge Avenger SE
2010 Ford Taurus Limited
2012 Chevrolet Express Passenger 1LT
2014 Mazda CX-5 Sport
2005 Ford Freestyle Limited