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Are Cheap Cars Still Safe? What to Consider Before You Buy

A car is more than a necessity. It's an investment that can give you good returns if you choose the right one. You don't have to break the bank to get a good, safe car, however, but you can apply frugal living to your purchase. Here's what to consider before you buy a car to make sure that you get a safe one that's also affordable.

Crashworthiness of the Car

The crashworthiness of a car is a rating for how well a vehicle will protect its passengers when a crash occurs. This term is used by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and is also termed as a five-star safety rating by car manufacturers and dealerships. The material used to construct the car plays a major role in this, with some car bodies being normalized to improve their strength and consistency. Normalizing is a heat treatment technique that sees a steel part held under temperatures as high as 1700°F and then air-cooled so that it increases ferritin grains and becomes more consistent. Take a look at to do your own body repairs.

Child Safety

If the car you're planning to buy is one that the whole family will use and you have young children, child safety is the second factor you should consider. Look for a car with the universal safety belt attachment system called Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children to make sure it will work with any car seat you use. Check to make sure that the attachment points are accessible and unobscured so you don't have a hard time fixing and removing the car seat. You may also take your child's car seat with you to test if it will be compatible with the car you want to get.

The Size and Weight

A car that's bigger and heavier will be harder to destabilize and cause you to get into an accident than one that's smaller and lighter. However, it's also true that bigger cars can be harder to control and move, so they may end up rolling over in a crash. The best thing, in this case, is to look for a car that's in the middle as far as size is concerned, not too small and light or extremely large. If you want to make physical adjustments to your car, make sure that they don't interfere with the car's shape, size, and weight in a way that will decrease its safety. Work with a reputable metal fabricator who will include safety training with their documented quality control program. This may include the proper use of PPE like 3M masks alongside welder hoods.

Robust Warning Systems

If you can get a car with good warning systems, this will help you stay safer while you drive. Forward crash and lane departure systems can sound an alarm by producing visual and audio cues like alarms and flashing lights to inform the driver of a potential risk so they avoid an imminent crash. While it's a newer safety feature mostly available on high-end cars, it can be found as an after-market add-on by anyone who is interested in it.

The Structural Design

Finally, the structural design of a vehicle will play an important role in the overall safety of the car. A safe car in terms of structural design is one that has a strong occupant compartment that will keep the passengers well-protected in case of a crash. Both the front and the rear of the car need to be built in a way that they will fold and bend properly to absorb the force of a crash. This is especially important for cars with more horsepower, with the average being between 100 and 200 horsepower

With these five considerations in mind, you can get a car that will help you stay safe while driving. It doesn't have to be a high-end or brand new vehicle because as long as it ticks a majority of these boxes, it will be good to go.


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