How to Prep Your Vehicle to Trade-In

August 20th, 2021 by

When you buy a car at Puklich Chevrolet in Bismark, ND, trading in your current vehicle has many advantages. It lowers the loan amount, which rewards you with lower monthly installments, less total interest paid, and a quicker pay-off. If you want to get the highest value for your trade-in, you want to prep the vehicle using the following guidelines.

Start with Research

You want to get some idea of what your car is worth because if the value is low, you may not want to bother with trading it in. One of the best places to get an estimate is at the website of auto authority Kelley Blue Book. By entering such details as Make, Model, and Mileage, or Vehicle Identification Number, or Plane Number, you’ll get the Trade-In Range. If our offer is within that range, you’ll then know that you’re receiving a fair amount for your car.

Inspect the Goods

Inspect your vehicle as a buyer would. Walk around it, sit inside of it, and try all the controls. Write down anything that isn’t working correctly. Then take your car on a test drive on city streets, the highway, and rough roads. Are the steering, braking, and accelerating working as they should? Are you hearing any strange noises or noticing unusual smells? Write anything unusual down for the next step.

Make Minor Fixes

Did your inspection expose any minor problems that you can fix yourself? For example, is a bulb burnt out that can easily be replaced, or is a wire cut that can be spliced together? Make any minor repairs that you can. Otherwise, we will deduct for anything that we have to do ourselves.

However, do NOT make major repairs that will cost a lot of money. You will probably not get what you put in. Leave those major problems to us. We have a Service Department full of factory-certified automotive technicians who can make short work of what may seem like major issues to you.

A repair that will be free to you is related to a recall. So check for any outstanding recalls on your car at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. If any are open, you can get the repair for free at any dealership for the brand of your car. You don’t want us to have to take care of the repair because it will cost us time and effort.

Clean Inside and Out

Give your vehicle a good cleaning inside and out to make it look newer and more appealing. Remove everything inside, including the spare tire and tools. Take out any aftermarket accessories that did not come with your original purchase. You’re not going to get credit for any extras that you add, so you might as well use them in your next vehicle.

You can then vacuum the interior and wipe down surfaces like the seating, dashboard, and door panel. Don’t forget to take care of the interior of the windows and the windshield.

Give the exterior a good cleaning as well. You can take it to a car wash or handle the chore at home. Be sure to clean under the body and the tires as well. A coat of wax will give the body a like-new shine.

Return the Originals

If there’s any original equipment that came with the car that you removed, now is the time to put them back. These can include extra keys, remotes, accessories, the owner’s manual, and the instructions for the infotainment system. The closer you can get your vehicle to its purchase condition, the more appealing it will be to buyers, and the higher the price we can give you. If we have to spend money to include important original equipment, such as an additional key fob, then we’ll take what we have to spend out of our offer.

Something you can add to the vehicle that was not part of the original purchase are any invoices for service or maintenance. These serve as written proof that you took care of your vehicle and will enable us to offer more because your trade-in was well-maintained.

Contact Us

If you have any questions or want to get started on trading in your current car, please give us a call at Puklich Chevrolet, or contact us online here. Our staff will be glad to help.