damaged car

At North Texas Collision Center, we understand the excitement (and sometimes anxiety) of buying a car. You want a reliable vehicle that looks good and drives smoothly, but what if there’s hidden car damage lurking beneath the surface? Unexpected repair costs can put a damper on your new ride, and leave you feeling frustrated.

The good news? With a little know-how, you can become a savvy car shopper and identify potential car damage before you buy. Here are 5 essential tips from our collision repair experts at North Texas Collision Center

Be a Body Language Expert

  • Visual Inspection is Key: Don’t just glance around. Take a thorough look! Look for mismatched paint shades, uneven panel gaps, or distorted reflections on the body. Scrutinize headlights, taillights, and trim for cracks or misalignments. Open the hood and trunk, checking for signs of rust, leaks, or poorly executed repairs.


  • Get Low and Dirty (Not Really, But Kind Of): Squat down and examine the underside of the car for any scrapes, dents, or leaks. Pay close attention to the frame rails and suspension components for any signs of bending or car damage.

Listen Like a Mechanic

  • Test Drives Tell a Story: Pay attention to unusual noises while driving. Clunking, grinding, or vibrations can indicate suspension or alignment problems. Listen for any abnormal squeaking or creaking when turning, which could signal steering issues.


  • Pop the Hood and Lend an Ear: With the engine running, listen for any knocking, ticking, or excessively loud engine noises. These could be signs of internal engine damage, a costly repair.

Knowledge is Power

  • The Car’s History Matters: Obtain a vehicle history report. This report will reveal past accidents, repairs, and ownership history. Be wary of cars with a history of major accidents, as hidden car damage can resurface later.


  • Let a Professional Be Your Eyes: Don’t rely solely on your own inspection. Schedule a pre-purchase inspection with a trusted mechanic. They can use specialized tools and their expertise to uncover hidden car damage you might miss.

Tech to the Rescue

  • Flashlights are Your Friend: Shine a bright flashlight along the car’s body, especially in shadowed areas. This can help reveal scratches, dents, or previous bodywork hidden under a coat of wax.


  • Paint Depth Gauges: Your Secret Weapon: These handy tools, readily available online or at auto parts stores, can measure the paint thickness on various parts of the car. Inconsistent paint depth can indicate areas where repairs have been made, potentially hiding underlying car damage.


Trust Your Gut

  • Don’t Ignore Red Flags: Throughout the inspection process, pay attention to your intuition. If something feels off, like the seller seems overly eager or avoids answering questions about car damage, walk away. There are plenty of other cars out there!

North Texas Collision Center Has You Covered

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a confident car buyer. However, if you do discover hidden damage after your purchase, don’t despair! The experts at North Texas Collision Center are here to help. We offer a wide range of collision repair services, from minor scratches and dents to complex frame repairs. Our team uses state-of-the-art equipment and high-quality materials to restore your car to its pre-accident condition, all backed by our industry-leading warranty.

So, whether you’re buying a new car or your current one needs some TLC, North Texas Collision Center is your one-stop shop for all your auto body repair needs. Contact us today for a free estimate and experience the North Texas Collision Center difference!