The seven key areas that wear out the most in a second-hand car

The passage of time, use and unforeseen events generate wear and tear on the different parts of the car. The car upholstery they wear out after normal use, but they are not the only ones. All those parts that we manipulate the most on a day-to-day basis are especially exposed and we must pay attention to them when we are going to buy a second-hand car.

A more or less rapid check of these areas can provide us with a kind of history of use, and we will be able to know with what intensity and especially with how much care has that car been used. Or at least, if we look at the parts most likely to be worn or broken, we will know in advance unforeseen costs that we will have to face.

Of course, the higher quality the upholstery has, the more it will resist use and the passage of time. That the car has been in very hot areas or that lived with children and / or animals, will also influence the state of the upholstery. These are the areas of the upholstery where there is more wear:


Focus seats

The car seats they are a key point. They have continuous contact with the passengers of a car, making it one of the areas that suffer the most. In addition, they have a large surface area and especially sensitive parts, so they are more exposed to stains and friction (especially on the outer sides).

It is important to look at the joints between the different materials that the seat upholstery may be made of. One of the points with the most suffered joints are the elevations that are on the sides of the seat itself. Another area that tends to deform due to excess load are the storage pockets placed in the back of the front seats.

Floor mats

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All floor mats They are the area of ​​greatest wear of the car due to their location, the friction of feet or loads (in the case of the trunk) and because they collect all the dirt and moisture.

The cloth floor mats they tend to wear more and pick up more dirt. The rubber mats they are easier to clean and less dirt is impregnated, although over time the plastic becomes rigid and loses flexibility, so it becomes easy to break. Besides, they are much uglier, but that is already a matter of taste.

Car floor

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And under the floor mats is soil, which will end up collecting all the dirt that the mats have not managed to stop. The dirt is embedded in the ground and it is often difficult to remove it because we tend to forget that it is there.

This is a good place to look for indicators of use, such as water filling, accumulation of dog hair, or any other substance that may have been spilled. In addition, in the event that it is broken or we want to replace it, it is complicated and expensive.

Steering wheel

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The steering wheel It is the piece most used by a landslide. It is the main control of the car and to which we use at all times to maintain the direction, so we are constantly fingering it.

The sweat, grease and any other kind of dirt that we can transfer will be patiently deposited in the steering wheel rim and all its nooks and crannies. In addition, it is usually very exposed to the sun and the upper part wears especially easily over time.

The sides of the steering wheel where we usually grab it may also be more worn. This wear apart from being ugly to look at, it is unpleasant to the touch, so if the steering wheel is heavily used, be careful. Changing a steering wheel is not cheap.

Gear lever and its surroundings

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Another piece that takes a good beating every time we drive is the gearshift, and especially that of manual gearbox cars. You have to handle it whenever you want to move the car and the same thing happens with the handbrake lever.

They are areas with a lot of contact, but also, since they are generally placed on a flat piece, they tend to accumulate dirt and debris. They generally come embellished with leather bellows (or similar) that can be easily aged, cracked, or just scratched or broken.

Doors and their trim

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The doors they also take your tute. The upper part is always exposed to the sun so if its material is not resistant it tends to discolor, crack or even peel off in some areas.

Below we have the handles and opening handles, two elements that we also use every time we get in and out of the car, in addition to the window regulator controls. All these elements if they have not received a more or less careful use, it is easy for them to present defects.


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Last but not least are the pedals. The three (or two) pedals are the other key part of a vehicle’s handling and their wear and tear is most logical, especially in the case of the clutch.

Normally, on rubber pedals, the reliefs erode over time, so if we detect excessive wear, it is best to change them. It can be done easily and will improve safety by better grasping the sole of the shoe and preventing slipping.

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Lenny Li

I started to play with tech since middle school. Smart phones, laptops and gadgets are all about my life. Besides, I am also a big fan of Star War. May the force be with you!

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