Tips for buying a used car in Toronto

Toronto Canada is known as a world class city and if you live there, you’ll see why. As for the roads, they are generally in good shape but Toronto has a traffic problem which is typical of any big city. If you own a car in Toronto, you’re going to want to make sure it’s a reliable one, one that will not break down right in the middle of rush hour.

Here we will talk about getting yourself a used car in Toronto or for any city for that matter, when you want something that is reliable and with a good reputation.

Tip#1 Do Your Research

So you have decided which car you would like to buy. The next step is to do your research on the car to see if it is worthy of a purchase or not. Some cars end up on a “lemon list” which you want no part of. Even if it’s a car you just have to have, it’s not worth it if it is considered a lemon. Expect many repairs, problems, headaches etc. Unless you are prepared for this, avoid getting a car that is known to have mechanical gremlins unless you’re the kind of person that enjoys repairs – which I highly doubt.

Most of the research you will be doing will be online. Simply Google the car you want to buy and you should see some related articles. If it has a really bad reputation, you’ll probably see those results on the first page. You should also Google the car name followed with “reliability” or some other keyword and see what people are saying about it. Youtube is another reference you can look up your choice of car on as well. If your car is popular, you’ll probably find a forum or two dedicated to the car. This is gold as you can get a lot of information here as well as talk to owners of the car.

Once you have done enough research and haven’t come up with many red flags and are reasonably confident that the car of choice is a good one, it’s time to do some comparison analysis.

Comparison Analysis

For the car you want to buy, determine the year range you are interested in. A vehicle may look the same with only minor cosmetic changes for a 2-3 year period, sometimes longer. If you like only a certain year of car, your options will be much less but if you can spread it out to at least a 3 year range, you’ll have many more options to choose from.
Go online and search for your car. In Toronto, a popular car buying site like Auto Trader can help. Select the range of years and filter by price. You may sometimes see a drastic range in price for the same year so pay attention to these ads and determine why. Mileage plays a big factor along with the condition of the vehicle. Make note of this and record prices on the high side and low side, taking note of the mileage.

The main point of this is to determine price points. When you visit a dealer or if you decide to buy private, you’ll understand the market better and know what the car is worth.

Time to Start Shopping

So you’ve determined your car is not a lemon and know what it’s worth based on the year, mileage and general condition of the car. The next step is to go out and look at some cars. Never buy the first one, no matter how much you love it. You’ll want to see at minimal three, but five to seven would be more ideal.
If you’re going to buy privately, you’ll be able to ask a lot of questions about the car because the owner was most likely very attached the vehicle, unlike at a dealership where they only know the current state of the car. Find yourself a well known dealership in Toronto with good Reviews. Dupont Auto Centre is an example. You can see from their very high Google reviews they have a good reputation and here are their used car listings of their current inventory.

Get a Second Opinion From a Mechanic

If you have found a car you feel is right for you, the price is right, it drives well, has a good history, etc., then the next step is to get another opinion. If you’re a mechanic or at least mechanically inclined and have worked on cars before, you’re a step ahead. If not, find a mechanic that is familiar with this car and spend a few bucks to bring it in for an inspection. A private owner and dealership should have no issue with this for the most part. This could end up saving you a ton of money should there be something seriously wrong with the vehicle.

Conclusion

There are many things you need to do before buying a used car and if you live in Toronto there are many, many options. Do your research, get the car checked, try to get the best price. Never pay full price on the vehicle, always bargain as it is expected. Stay confident and stick to your budget but also be reasonable. Following all these steps is just a guideline and feel free to research this more. Buying a used car is a lengthy process but will save you money in the long run.

Top 11 Car Maintenance Tips to Keep Your Car Running Smooth

Auto care is very important for your car to operate smoothly and remain in good condition for a long time. Car owners should pay more attention when it comes to maintenance of their vehicles. Not paying attention will definitely affect the quality and performance of the engine, which could lead to mechanical problems. According to a recent study, 5 percent of road fatalities are related to negligence in vehicle maintenance. It goes without saying, that auto care will extend the life of your car, and ensure a safer movement and a healthy environment.

A routine car maintenance means keeping the engine in tune, which in turn saves you money. Tuning up your car engine regularly at a fixed intervals will ensure that it runs smoothly, in addition to addressing other mechanical and electrical problems. We asked the experts at the service department at Classic Kia for their top tips in keeping your car maintained.

Here are the top 11 automobile maintenance tips they provided us:

1. Check all the fluids regularly

These fluids include brake, power steering, windshield washer solvent, anti-freeze and transmission/transaxle fluid, which ensure safety and high performance of your car.

2. Maintain your tires

Your car manual will tell how often your mechanic can rotate the tires. Make sure to check them regularly if they’re properly inflated. You should also check the tread of your tires if they’re still at the safe level. This will ensure that you enjoy a smooth ride, lower the risk of blowout and have a better mileage. Under-inflated tires will lead to loss of fuel efficiency. Check your car tires every month.

3. Oil filter change

Change the oil filter frequently, after 3,000 – 4,000 miles. Your car manual will give you the details on when to change oil and oil filter. Adhere to the guideline to keep your engine well lubricated.

4. Keep your car battery posts and cables clean

Battery posts and cables must be clean to eliminate corrosion. In addition, check the battery fluid and replenish it in case its low. However, this does not apply to maintenance-free batteries.

5. Inspect engine belts

When you take your vehicle for routine maintenance, make sure your mechanic checks all the engine belts for any cracks or tears and fix the problem if any.

6. Check the lighting system

Turn all the signals, brake and headlights, and taillights to ensure they’re functioning properly.

7. Lubricating the chassis

Your car chassis should be lubricated regularly to extend the life of the engine components.

8. Air filter change

Always check whether the air filtration system of your vehicle in functioning well. Regular air filter change, especially during the oil change will improve the functioning of your car.

9. Always listen to your car

If you hear any grinding or squealing noises, you need to have your brakes checked. Check if your steering wheel is shaking on a smooth road. Do not ignore any sound that is consistent, address it as soon as possible.

10. Good driving habits

Bad driving habits can affect the condition of your car. You can easily be involved in accidents that could have been avoided by driving at recommended speed. Remember high speeds can damage your brake, which can compromise your safety.

11. Keep your car clean

It’s important to keep your vehicle clean inside and out. Exterior debris such as dirt, hot tar and bugs can affect the undercarriage and other components of your car over the time. This can also drop the resale value of your car.

Looking To Seal Cracks In Your Driveway?

Your driveway takes some serious wear and tear over the years.

Especially when you live in Ottawa.  With the bitter cold winters and the hot and humid summers no wonder the asphalt contracts and expands.  As a result cracks and potholes are common in Ontario.

There are many ways that you can seal your driveway.  Here are some of the ways that you can get your driveway back in good health.

  1. Purchase the sealcoat and do it yourself

If you are an expert in asphalt and concrete this will probably be the cheapest option.  Doing it yourself will probably take a good days work depending on how many cracks you have to fill.  You will need the sealcoat and a way to heat it, something to spread the material with, and a dry day.

2. Hire a professional

If you are looking for driveway sealing in Ottawa then you are best off hiring a pro to do the work for you.  It’s affordable, lasts a long time, and you know that you won’t mess it up yourself.  Most people will opt for this option.  I would suggest contacting Cameron from Seal A Drive.  He has been in the industry for years and always does a fantastic job for his clients.

The importance of treating your asphalt for the winter

The bitter cold Ontario winters are terrible for any type of asphalt that you have.  The cold weather will make the asphalt brittle if it’s not treated every year.  The treatment adds the oils back into the asphalt and makes it more malleable so that when it contracts with the cold it doesn’t crack.

In the end it’s more than worth it because it would cost thousands of dollars to repave your asphalt in most cases.  However if you keep it treated properly it will stay good for years and years.

Check out this article about the features and benefits of treating your asphalt – http://www.usroads.com/journals/rmej/9908/rm990801.htm

When you have a crack in your driveway, seriously, call Cameron!  He is the best at what he does and will keep your asphalt properly treated for years to come.