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Don't simply trust the condition of your next car rental vehicle on blind faith. Even if the car rental company providing your vehicle offers only new models and is rigorous with maintenance, they are only human and could have missed an issue that will cost your time, money or both. We work with hundreds of companies around the world, all with their own fleet standards. It is up to you, the customer, to assess and approve your car rental.
A common culprit in unexpected car rental expenses that is easily overlooked. bend your knees and take a good look. Check for wear bars or missing tread, bulges, or anything abnormal. Bust out a psi gauge if necessary. Also, make sure the rental car is equipped with a spare tyre, jack, and lug wrench.
Take a careful walk-around and check closely for any dents, however small, cracked lenses, missing hubcaps, etc. Make sure that they have very clear notes of this before you accept the vehicle or you could end up paying for it later.
Test the brakes. If there is any grinding or otherwise abnormal noises request another vehicle. Adjust all the mirrors, check for damage anywhere in the interior and make note, and don't forget to look for dirt or bad smells.
Only after you are 100% secure with the car rental should you drive off the lot. This also means you have taken the time to look through the Car Rental Policies and are confident you know what you will be charged for when you return the vehicle. If you should happen to need any repairs while on the road call your rental company as they may prefer to bring you a replacement vehicle. If not, make sure you keep documentation including towing bills, repair orders, and even a photos.