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Thread: buying used check list

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Oak Park, CA
    Posts
    2,207

    buying used check list

    Hey all,
    I just created a first draft of a possible check list, to be used when buying a used car. I tend to get too excited and forget about half of the things I wanted to test.
    As I already have this one, I thought I would post it.
    Please if you thing it needs rewording or more/less stuff, post it back, we could come up with a very cool check list of things, with your expertise.

    I hope this helps somebody.

    David.
    ----



    VIN:__________________________
    Plate_______________ State_____
    Land Rover___________________

    Before starting the car, outside
    □ Check rear for rust, especially bumper, door and chassis.
    □ Rear wiper
    □ Spare tire
    □ Check fuel area for rust
    □ Leaks around glasses
    □ Rust on wheel walls
    □ Oil leaks on wheels (inside and/or outside the wheels)
    □ Check wheels for deformation, dings
    □ Check tires, pressure, thread
    □ Check plastic light covers for cracks
    □ Check label for 50 state emission
    □ Check for rust in hood or roof.
    □ Check front under engine for rust
    □ Check springs/shocks
    □ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __

    Before starting the car, inside
    □ Check leather and general upholstery
    □ Headliner
    □ Leaks around sunroof(s)
    □ Leaks around sky windows or any glasses
    □ Security belts for wear
    □ Carpet (stains, mold, )
    □ Check rear cargo area for rust or mold
    □ Emergency brake operation
    □ Miles: __________
    □ Keys, total keys:_______
    □ Keyless remote(s) working
    □ Open/Check under the steering wheel.
    □ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __

    Before starting the car, engine
    □ Find leaks on engine, Gear box and/or transfer
    □ Check hoses for leaks or cracks
    □ Check battery for leaks
    □ Check exhaust system for rust or rattles
    □ Check engine mounts, shock mounts
    □ Check radiator(s) for leaks or holes
    □ Check steering system visually
    □ Check ignition system visually
    □ Check oil level/color/texture
    □ Check tranny oil color/texture
    □ Check water level on expander
    □ Check air filter
    □ Check belt(s)
    □ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __

    Car running, inside
    □ Tranny noises
    □ CEL
    □ ABS
    □ Other warning lights?
    □ Windows
    □ Power Locks
    □ Sunroofs
    □ Wipers and washers (F/R)
    □ Lights (on, off,)
    □ Turning signals, emergency
    □ Radio
    □ Smooth shifting
    □ Acceleration
    □ Emergency brake works
    □ Courtesy lights
    □ Engine revs up and down
    □ Idle speed when warm:______RPM
    □ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __

    Car running, engine and outside
    □ Find leaks on engine, Gear box and/or transfer while running
    □ Check hoses
    □ Open oil cap, smoke?
    □ Blue smoke
    □ White smoke
    □ Expander bubbles
    □ Rev up and check for smoke or leaks again
    □ Check idle is correct cold/warm
    □ Check tranny oil level in N
    □ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __

    Test Drive
    □ Tranny OK, smooth shifting
    □ Check H,L and lock operation on transfer
    □ All speeds work as intended (R, D,)
    □ Steering correct
    □ Vibration?
    □ Noises?
    □ __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ __
    <DCProven >
    <1977 Land Rover Santana, Series III, 2.25 Diesel>
    <1995 RRC, LWB, 4.2 V8>

    "Information is not knowledge,..." Frank Zappa

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    San Ramon, CA
    Posts
    1,624
    Unless I missed it (going buggy after reading all that) I'd add the following:

    Check the heater and air conditioner to make sure they work.

    Check under the front carpets for rust. Those a/c vent tubes plug up and get everything wet underneath, then you get rust, or you get windshield leaks or leaks through the firewall and same effect.

    Check the brakes (wear on rotors and thickness of pads), brake lines (for cracks), brake fluid (level and if it looks like it's old).

    Check for exhaust leaks.
    Check the cruise control (if it has it) to make sure it works.

    Make sure the coolant is nice and doesn't have 5 tons or rust floating around in it. Smell it to make sure it doesn't smell like fuel.

    Make sure the heater hoses go where they're supposed to and haven't been doubled back to avoid coolant going through the heater core because it leaks.

    See what kind of repair records are there and if any warranty/recall work has been done (like the gas tank replacement).

    Hook up a code reader and see if there's any recent trouble codes.

    Make sure the CEL lights up when you turn on the key prior to starting, if not either the bulb is bad, or someone removed it so the light won't come on and alert someone to a problem.

    When running, take a piece of heater hose or whatever and listen for knocks in engine like piston slap, rod knock, etc.

    Make sure all the abs is hooked up and works (people like to disconnect it when it screws up or they prefer it that way).

    Run a CarFax. Make sure the mileage from them jives with the odometer. Make sure the car isn't a refugee from New Orleans that was under 6 feet of water for a month.

    Check the VIN on the title to make sure it matches the one on the vehicle.

    Check with DMV to make sure the car hasn't been stolen before you buy it.

    If it's a stick shift, make sure no clutch chatter, check clutch fluid to see if it's old, make sure it shifts well in all gears (including reverse), and make sure the clutch doesn't slip and that it doesn't let out real near the top of the pedal travel or it's probably about due for replacement.

    I also (if you see the vehicle at the seller's house) check out the other cars to see if they look abused, dented, or generally screwed up. Check the outside of the house, too, if it's neat or messy. I generally ask to use the bathroom so I can see what the inside of the house is like (useful with condos or apartments because the outside usually tells you nothing) to see if the inside of the house is a mess. I've generally found over the years that the condition of the other vehicles and house is a good tell for how well they probably took care of the vehicle.

    OK I'm tired, hope this adds to your list and helps someone.

    JH
    Last edited by jhmover; 01-26-2007 at 05:20 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Sacramento, CA
    Posts
    6,219
    Once you guys have a list all finalized, I'll post the final product as a "Sticky" so we can refer people to it when they ask on this board and others.
    1994 RRC LWB
    My projects: www.mmacrue.com
    Follow me on Twitter: @mmacrue

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Lodi, Ca.
    Posts
    1,728
    Quote Originally Posted by jhmover
    See what kind of repair records are there and if any warranty/recall work has been done (like the gas tank replacement).

    Hook up a code reader and see if there's any recent trouble codes.

    Make sure the CEL lights up when you turn on the key prior to starting, if not either the bulb is bad, or someone removed it so the light won't come on and alert someone to a problem.


    Run a CarFax. Make sure the mileage from them jives with the odometer. Make sure the car isn't a refugee from New Orleans that was under 6 feet of water for a month.

    Check the VIN on the title to make sure it matches the one on the vehicle.

    Check with DMV to make sure the car hasn't been stolen before you buy it.
    JH
    I think these should be on top, along with a smog inspection before you buy. Also keep the vehicle running while inspecting to see if it overheats. A lot of these things though can be screened by a crooked salesman, say recently changed oil, tranny fluid, antifreeze. Question recent changes of fluids, and a recently cleaned undercarriage!
    Cameron
    1995 RRC LWB
    LT230 Swap
    3" Lift
    255/85/16's

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Oak Park, CA
    Posts
    2,207
    Cool stuff and good catches there...

    So I have Check List V 2.0 it still fits in a single page, one side in a word document, 3 columns.
    If there are any other suggestions I'll try to add them.

    RoverX when this thread gets slow, I can send you the word document for you to publish somewhere or I could just paste the whole thing as I did before.

    Thank you.

    David.
    <DCProven >
    <1977 Land Rover Santana, Series III, 2.25 Diesel>
    <1995 RRC, LWB, 4.2 V8>

    "Information is not knowledge,..." Frank Zappa

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    168
    You might throw in a note to the not so mechanically inclined to bring a friend that is a mechanic along to help check things out.

    I have encountered many instances where a seller has patched/rigged thing to make a sale (i.e. 90w in the power steering, by-passed vacuum lines, poorly patched up electrical wiring, reset check engine light that come on 50 to 100 miles after you buy it, etc…..).
    Last edited by J&PsRovers; 12-09-2007 at 01:20 AM. Reason: Should have added more.
    James

    Live life to the fullest, and be done with it!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    yelm,washington
    Posts
    88
    stand to thee side of the engine and watch the pullys and belt to se if they shimmy or wiggle for bad bearings in an acc.

    check gaps in body pannels and doors to make sure they are all the same

    and that there is no miss alignment from the body and fender man

    and that all body pannels match in colorand haven't been "touched up"

    on a side not I am not affraid of a vehicle that has been wrecked as long as it has been repaired correctly by a reputable shop. My rover was near totaled (The adjuster literally flipped a coin) 6 days after we bought it and you could not tell where it was repaired. the repairs also come with a lifetime warrenty also. food for thought

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    NJ/NY
    Posts
    25

    Technical Issues

    This might help too. Just read this last night and not able to sleep until I checked this morning about VIN numbers.
    http://landroverforums.com/forum/sho...t=18483&page=3
    Hope this will help. Cheers

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1,987
    Thanks for this!
    Aaron

    "Life is to be lived.If you have to support yourself, you had bloddy well better find some way that is going to be interesting....And you don't do that by sitting around wondering about yourself"
    -Katherine Hepburn

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    12

    More to Check

    Be sure to check the condition of both horn buttons on the steering wheel for proper action and the operation of both the high and low pitch horns. The ignition key should also be easy to remove in the off position and you should not have any wind noise while driving with the window up. Also take the car through a drive thru car wash and observe for possible water leaks. Cosmetic problems such as a druppy headliner is another item that should be checked and repaired before you purchase, especially if you are paying top dollar for the car.

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