Purchasing a used heavy-duty truck can be a great way to save a lot of money. On the flip side, you may run into problems down the road if you don’t perform your due diligence. Here are five factors to consider before you look for your next big rig.
Beyond the initial purchase price, you’ll want to consider the truck’s fuel economy. The less you have to spend on gas, the more money you keep for yourself. While gas prices fluctuate and the savings will change each month, there’s an overall upward trend.
If you’re using your truck for short hauls, a day cab will work just fine and save you money on the purchase price and the gas mileage. However, a sleeper cab is the better option if you expect to do regular long hauls. You’ll save a lot of money on hotel rooms while still being comfortable inside the sleeper cab.
Most big rigs can easily drive for a million miles, but you might consider not purchasing a truck that already has 800,000 miles or more on it. If you only plan to use it for the short term, you can buy a high-mileage truck at a heavy-duty truck sale. Before you sign on the dotted line, listen to the engine for any unusual noises and make sure there’s no blue or white smoke coming from the exhaust after the engine heats up.
DOT Inspection Paperwork
It’s imperative to review the most recent inspection papers before purchasing a used truck. The paperwork should indicate what future problems you might expect and what parts may need replacing. You may also want to ask for accident and maintenance records and what they used the truck for.
Price is a big determining factor in your decision, but it shouldn’t be the only one. Used vehicles aren’t cheap, especially if they’re from a reputable manufacturer and are expected to last. Along with the cost of the big rig, you also need to consider the cost of financing to ensure you’re buying in an affordable price range.
Before you head towards the next heavy-duty truck sales event, make sure you think about what type of big rig you’re looking for. Once you know what type of big rig you want, it will be easier to narrow down the search.