Classic TrimCoat Unveils a new series of Products this Summer!
After reading our Helpful Tips for this week, check out our new Plastic Bumper Paint Refinishing Kit to learn how to paint your plastic bumper like a pro!
Tips on Buying a used car from a dealership
After buying many used cars from small dealerships, large
dealerships, and individuals, I have come to the conclusion that it
might be safer for the average buyer to purchase from a
dealership. Now, I’m sure there will be many who have
arrived at the opposite opinion based on their own experience.
My personal experience as of today, is that if you have an
average knowledge of what makes a car tick, it might be
better to go with a more “expensive” purchase from a reputable
dealership. Dealerships have a number of junk fees such as prep
dealership fees, tax,tag and title fees and many I’m not quite sure
of myself which are more expensive at the beginning, but there is
a better chance of them standing behind you if something goes wrong.
Actually the tax, tag, and title fees are good because you don’t have
to deal with all that government red tape. The dealership does it
for you, and you receive all the stuff in the mail without having to
stand in line at the DMV.
Have the car checked out
If you are somewhat knowledgeable about cars, and have a dependable
mechanic, it might be better to pay your mechanic to check it out. If
you have done business with him in the past, he might even do it at no
charge. He might do this for the repeat business in the future.
I purchased a BMW from a reputable dealership in Atlanta, and they
had no problem with my taking it to my mechanic. They will certainly
asked for insurance, license, and any information necessary for them
to feel comfortable allowing you to take the car off their lot. In my
case, my mechanic found about $4,000 worth of repairs the car needed.
I then had bargaining power. You also must be willing to let the car go if you
are not able to reach a fair arrangement. Don’t “Fall in Love” with
the car until you have gotten a deal you like.
Many times, if you are buying a high maintenance car like a BMW,
Jaguar, Volvo, and most cars these days, it might be good to add a
warranty to your purchase. If you decide to do this, take an extra day
away from the dealership, to read the warranty you are buying. The more
expensive warranties most of the time are better, but not always.
I always trusted that buying this coverage would protect me. There is
an old saying, “The Higher The Price, The Nicer The Nice”. This is
not always true. Actually I think this was a lyric in a pop song. You need to
read the details. Many warranties cover the big stuff, which sounds good.
The reason they do this is because the big things seldom break and these
repairs sound expensive to fix, so you think it’s a better deal. In addition,
if you don’t follow the specific instructions in the agreement such as
changing the oil by a professional on time, and keep the documentation,
they have the right not to honor the warranty. In addition, many warranties
don’t cover labor. They just cover parts. Parts are usually a smaller part of
most repairs. In addition to this, there is usually maximum
dollar amount they will cover. It is usually about $2,500. If you have
a major repair, $2,500 will be a small down payment on the total
repair. Some warranties have good coverages, so you need to read
and understand what you are buying. We will be doing a video covering
various warranties in the near future.
Buying Used Parts, or rebuilding your existing parts
If you are thinking of keeping your car, and considering rebuilding
or replacing your engine and or transmission, be very careful who
you deal with. If you have these items rebuilt, AGAIN, read the
warranty they provide carefully. Before you agree to do the job,
take their agreement home with you, and spend some quiet time
with it. This will save you stress and wasted time later on. Just
because you use a national company to do the rebuild, it doesn’t
mean that they aren’t looking out for themselves first.
Buying A Used Low Mileage Engine Or Transmission
If you decide to buy a used, low mileage engine or transmission, be very careful
who you deal with. Some companies claim their engines and transmission
are Carfax documented. This is not true. Carfax has nothing to do with these
companies. Hundreds have been cheated by one company in particular
in Wisconsin who claims that their engines and transmissions are Carfax
documented. Don’t believe this. Go to the Better Business bureau at
www.bbb.com, and search companies such as these. Do a Google search.
Enter the name of the company you are about to deal with, followed by the
word “complaints”, and see what comes up. There are many reputable
companies out there which will tell you the truth. Make sure you check
them out. We will be doing a video on what happened to us when we
purchased a used, supposedly, “Carfax documented” engine. It became
a costly nightmare.
Long Distance Car Purchasing
The INTERNET has gotten to be one of the prime sources for car purchasing.
When we buy a car on line from a far off state, we take a big chance.
Many dealerships across the country buy cars at auction, do minimal maintenance
if any, detail the car, and put it up on EBAY. Their sales write up describes the car
as being nearly perfect. WARNING. Most of these dealerships recommend you
hire a firm which checks the car out. My opinion is that it isn’t worth the money
The problem with these companies is that they perform a surface inspection only.
They advertise a multi item check for about $100.00. The reality is, they don’t do
an engine compression check, leak down test, brake pad and rotor check, transmission
check, put it up on a lift and check the front end for wear, drop the drip
pan and check for engine oil leaks such and oil pan gaskets, valve cover gasket leaks,
upper and lower timing chain gaskets, or rear main bearing seal leaks. I have bought
three cars on EBAY, and had good luck with two of them, but experienced a horrible, costly
third purchase, which was my own fault because I didn’t take my own advise. It cost us
about $4,000, and we ended up trading it in for another car at a reputable dealership.
Luckily, I am in and around the car business, and have gotten to know many people
who have helped me out. One of the best ways to keep a dealership honest, is to ask if
the car you are thinking of buying has all books and repair records. If the car doesn’t
have these records, chances are the car was not maintained properly, and you should
not take a chance on it. Sometimes this is not the case, but usually it is. If the previous
owner didn’t think enough of the car to keep repair records, chances are he didn’t take
good care of it, and you don’t want it. Again, don’t fall in love with the way the car
looks on the outside. Although this is one of the features I require when I buy a used
car, I also think that the repair records are more important. My final advice is to purchase
vehicles in your own town or city. You need to drive it, check it out, and be close to the person
or dealership that sold it to you.
We value your comments and questions! Feel free to post below and sign up for our blog to receive more car tips and secrets, discounts and exclusive members only content.