When you buy a car, it is nice to have a clean interior, without spots in the upholstery and broken parts. However, these defects are easily solved with a little soap and water and some small repairs. It will become more of a problem, if the upholstery is ripped.


Small burn marks for example, are very well possible in either young and older cars. These marks are a clue for in car smoking by the previous owner. You will probably notice a smokey scent in combination with the burn marks. The photo below shows such a mark. Luckily these marks can be repaired, by sowing them or filling it up with glue and fibers. There are specialized companies that can repair these marks, beyond recognition.


Wear and tear in the upholstery, however, is not easily fixed. In most cases the costs for repair do not outweigh the benefits. Often the salesman will give you an extra discount, rather than pay for a fix.

Interior odour

An important part that you do not want to forget is the interior odour. In combination with the burn marks there will probably be a smoky scent in the car. This odour can be removed by a so called ozon treatment. If the odour is to dominant, there is a good chance that it will return. Make sure that before the ozon treatment takes place, the car is thoroughly cleaned. Take special care of the seats and the roof lining. Replace parts that are easy to replace, like the floor mats and interior filters, and finally the ozon treatment.

Another irritating odour comes from pets, in particular dogs. A dog leaves a nasty smell that is hard to get rid off. Especially when you are looking for an estate, the luggage compartment could have been the domain of the family pet. Check for hairs with a piece of sticky tape. If the odour is very irritating, it is best to put an extra condition in the contract, that the car will only be purchased if the air is cleaned to the buyers' approval.

Do mind that a used car always smells a bit stale. When you start driving it, the air will freshen up and the odours will disappear.