Buying a Car?

Today's Landscape

The average price of a new car eclipsed $48,283 and used car prices reached $28,219 in July 2022. With prices hitting record highs, everyone in the new or used car market is wondering how to get the most value for their dollar. For some folks, that means making informed decisions about purchasing a new or used vehicle. For others, that means maintaining their current vehicles for as long as they can until buying makes sense.

Are You Buying?

If you are looking to buy a new or used car, Consumer Reports – accessible through the MasterFILE Premier Database  or in-person at our libraries – can be a great resource when attempting to get the best quality car for your hard-earned money. With articles like "Reliable Used Cars for Every Budget," "Standout Models by Category," and the "Buying Guide," you can be sure to find a wealth of insight into your next purchase, new or old. Featuring comparisons in each class based on a number of factors, like predicted reliability, road noise, miles per gallon, and many more, Consumer Reports Buying Guides can give you a great starting point whether your are buying new or buying used. For those that are unfamiliar with the car buying process, head over to the "Financial Literacy Basics" and "Consumer Guides" sections of the Weiss Financial Ratings database to learn more about what you should look for to save money. And if you are buying used and want to get a sense of what that market is doing, the Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index can help when looking at the general trends.

Are You Playing the Long Game?

If it makes more sense for you to stick with your current vehicle, you may need to perform DIY maintenance to keep it in good condition. The library has resources that you can use for that too. You may know that we carry the Chilton’s Repair Manuals that you can borrow, but did you know that you can access even more information from Auto Repair Source. Like the repair manuals, Auto Repair Source will give you access to information about your vehicle that you can use to make informed decisions when it comes to repairs. From descriptions of trouble codes to wiring diagrams, Auto Repair Source allows you to print out or save only specific sections of its online repair manuals, and you can access it anywhere and anytime so long as you have your library card (and an internet connection).

If you need any help accessing these resources, be sure to reach out to a reference librarian! We are always happy to help.