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Buyer Beware: What to Look Out For When Shopping for a Used Truck


The Truck is a favorite when it comes to owning a reliable vehicle that can be used for a variety of purposes. Whether you want to use a truck for commercial use at your job or just because need something to pull your boat or haul household items around, a truck can be your most valued possession. However, trucks can be a bit more expensive, have special licensing and insurance requirements. Often truck resellers take advantage of this when they are in the business of making money so its a "buyers beware" market. Here are some things to look out for when shopping for a used truck:

Truck Size

When shopping for a used truck, the most important thing to consider is how big of a truck you actually need to get the job done. If you will be hauling relatively light loads or small trailers, then a nice compact truck should work nicely for you. In contrast, if you have a large boat or equipment that will be pulled around on a consistent basis, then a larger model will be better. Keeping this in mind before walking into a used truck dealership should help prevent you from driving off with an overpriced full size truck that is more looks than functional for you- with the payments to show for it.

Engine and Fuel Usage

If you are looking for value for your truck purchase, you may be surprised to find that many compact trucks get the same mileage as cars. There are compact truck models that have 4, 6, and eight cylinder engines and automatic transmissions that will give you a good mileage per dollar investment. Thats in contrast to the larger 10 and diesel engines that full size trucks offer. Unless the dealership is giving you an excellent deal on the price to compensate for the lack of fuel economy, then its probably not worth it to buy a full size truck for everyday use.

Safety Equipment

Todays trucks come loaded with the best in safety equipment like anti-lock brakes, drive train slippage prevention and air bags. Just like cars, the newer year trucks will offer you, your family or employees a higher safety rating than an older used truck. Thats especially important if you will be using the truck for family transportation or as part of a corporate fleet of vehicles. When purchasing a used truck, you may want to inquire as to the safety rating and ask about any safety equipment that it has before you decide to purchase it. That can save lives in the event of an accident.

Passenger Capacity/Interior

There are three basic styles when it comes to truck interiors. These include regular cab, extended cab and crew cabs. What that means is if you will need additional room inside the truck, such as for employees or family, you will need the type of cab space to accommodate that. Too many people have learned the hard way that its nearly impossible for the family to ride together in a regular cab truck that has a standard transmission stick in the middle of the front seat area. Try putting a car seat there and youll see how frustrating that can be. When buying a used truck, try to picture who will be riding in the truck on a regular basis and how much room you will actually need.

Towing Ability

People often buy trucks to handle touch hauling jobs like towing boats, work trailers or other equipment. These can be personal or work related so in order to get the best value on a used truck, its important to inquire as to the trucks towing ability before you buy it. Heres a range to keep in mind: Compact trucks can tow between 1-1.5 tons, full-size trucks can tow 4-5 tons depending on how they are equipped.

Buying a used truck doesnt have to be a major headache if you know what you want and how much you should spend. Taking some time beforehand to research the different types of trucks and their available features will save you a great deal of time, money and trouble after the fact.

 


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