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By: Aron Russell

Before buying a car, whether new or used, it is important to get the appropriate car information to make an informed purchase. I recently bought a used auto without getting the car information first, and boy was it a mistake. It was a 1995 Honda, a car known for its reliability, and I thought that I would have little or no trouble with it for years to come. Boy, was I mistaken. If I had looked up the vehicle identification number on carfax, like my cousin did before he bought his old VW, I would have found out that the seemingly pristine Honda had been in three major accidents! It was a disaster waiting to happen from the day that I bought it.

If you're buying a new car, it is enough to read consumer reports, but for a used car, you need more car information. If I had known about the accident, I might have had some one inspect my Honda more carefully, and would have found out that there was a crack in the engine block before I had already bought it and it was too late. As it stands, because I was impulsive and bought it without getting enough car information, I now have repairs to do which are more costly than the vehicle was in the first place.

Of course, the best kind of car information can come from a trusted mechanic. For thirty years, my family went to the same mechanic, a man by the name of Eddie, until he passed away recently. At his funeral, half of the people there at least were loyal customers who had depended on his car information to judge what repairs to do, whether to buy a car or not, and when it was time to get rid of an old clunker. If he were still around, I would have taken that Honda in to him before I bought it to find out all the car buying information I would need to make an informed purchase.

My new mechanic did look at it, but apparently he did a haphazard job. He relies on diagnostic machines and the work of his techs to get car information, but apparently he never looked all that closely himself. If he had, he would have probably noticed something as glaring as a looming engine failure, but instead, he glossed over the car. I lost thousands of dollars, and he lost a customer.

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