8am-5pm (CST M-F)

(888) 231-7965

7 Things Used Car Inspectors Aren’t Able to Check

Getting a used car inspection from a professional before you buy is a good idea. A professional car inspection protects you by offering the kind of information you need to determine whether or not a car you’re looking at is worth purchasing. Inspectors check a long list of things relating to the car’s current condition, its value, and so forth. However, there are seven things car inspectors cannot check in the field.

1. Vehicle Emissions

Accurately checking vehicle emissions to ensure they adhere to state standards requires specialized equipment vehicle inspectors typically don’t have access to. Emissions testing is best left to certified garages licensed to carry out the work.

2. Engine Compression

Due to liability issues and the amount of mechanical work involved, it’s not possible for inspectors to check engine compression in the field. Moreover, sellers are not likely to approve such testing even if the liability and labor issues didn’t exist.

3. Anything Requiring a Lift

Because professional car inspectors are mobile by nature, any work requiring the use of a lift is out of the question. Inspectors can take a look at the underside of the car using mirrors and cameras, but what they are able to see is limited.

4. Brake Pad Condition

Professional car inspectors are not mechanics. Therefore, while they can check the functionality of a car’s braking system, they can’t remove wheels and calipers to check the condition of the brake pads. A cursory visual inspection might be possible if the car’s wheels have an open design.

5. Timing Belt Condition

The average timing belt cannot be properly inspected without removing a significant number of engine components. As such, car inspectors generally do not check timing belt condition. Unless a seller says otherwise, the buyer should assume the timing belt has never been changed.

6. Ownership and Lien History

The ownership and lien history of a car is recorded on its title. Mobile car inspectors do not have the means to access state title information in the field, so they cannot verify anything sellers say about ownership or liens. Such matters must be settled between seller and buyer.

7. Engine and Transmission Numbers

Car inspectors do not look for engine and transmission numbers unless they are readily visible. In vintage cars, these numbers are often located in hard-to-find places. Sellers and buyers have to work out between themselves a means by which the numbers will be identified and verified. Car inspectors also do not verify or decode VIN numbers.

Technicians can check a lot of things during a pre-purchase car inspection, but not everything. The inspector’s report is just one resource for determining whether or not to buy a used car. If you need an inspection on a used automobile, reach out to Lemon Squad today at 888-231-7965.