The Facts of Buying a Used Semi Truck | Arrow Truck Sales

The Facts of Buying a Used Truck

There are plenty of articles and blogs on the internet today that talk about the financial advantages of buying a used versus new heavy duty truck. Used equipment has a lower purchase cost, no F.E.T. tax, lower total depreciation cost, and higher insurance rates. For some, buying a new $100k plus vehicle is simply not affordable and buying used is definitely a worthwhile consideration. However, those buyers must set proper and realist expectations. So here are some honest facts regarding buying used equipment.

Used Trucks Are Used Trucks

That’s why generally they cost less than half the price of a new unit. So while they may look new, they are still used. And even though used trucks can cost a lot of money, they cannot be made into a new truck again. Don’t expect perfection. It may have dings, dents, scratches, scars, and wear, but it still has productive business value. There is still a good portion of its useful life remaining and it has the potential of earning you money.

When shopping for equipment for your business, just remember that “pre-owned, nearly new, previously owned, late-model, fleet-buy and certified are still terms used to describe used vehicles. While there may be slight differences, they still had a previous owner and maybe more than one.

What to Expect When Buying Used Equipment

While used trucks can offer excellent value, the trucks and their components cannot be expected to have the same useful lifespan they had when they were new. If you expect the used truck you purchase to be perfect, you will likely be disappointed. If you expect it to perform like a brand new truck, again, you are likely going to be disappointed. However, you will most likely get into a truck while staying within your budget. There are definite trade-offs to consider, but ultimately the decision can be a cost-effective one.

One of the most common mistakes a first-time used truck buyer makes is based upon their overexpectations. When you operate a used truck (or even a new truck) on a day-to-day basis, you must have funds available and/or put aside a portion of each paycheck to cover future repairs and unexpected expenses.  If you do not do this, then your business is likely to fail. The amount of funds you’ll need is based upon a number of factors, like age of truck, mileage, how you drive it, how often you perform Preventative Maintenance and other variables.

OEM truck manufacturers have made impressive strides in the overall quality of the trucks they build today. There’s improved fuel economy, safety, comfort and they last longer. The definition of a high-mileage unit is considerably higher than it has been in the past. That’s an article for another day.

Maximizing Your Purchase…Minimizing Your Exposure

So you’ve found the right used truck at the right price that will handle your business application. But you’re still thinking “It’s Used!” The most important thing is to be aware of the facts.

When you buy any piece of equipment, you are ultimately responsible for the cost of maintenance and repairs in one form or another. With used equipment, it’s essential that you be a smart, informed buyer and know what you will be responsible for. The best place to start is asking exactly what is covered under any warranty and for how long.

Most reputable used truck dealers thoroughly inspect their trucks, sometimes (and preferably) by a third party. They are then put through a reconditioning process to provide the buyer with the good, dependable road-ready truck.

Some trucks are sold as-is” which means you are responsible for all repair costs once you take delivery. Some used trucks come with a standard warranty may be provided free-of-charge by the used truck dealer. Extended warranties on most components are available for purchase. So no matter is what type of warranty you are getting, make sure you understand what’s covered and for how long. Other than the written warranty available on the truck – and an extended warranty if purchased by the customer – there is no other expressed or implied guarantee. Read the warranty! Don’t expect anything to be covered that is not in your written warranty.

Where You Buy Is As Important As What You Buy

Finally, make sure you purchase your used truck from a reputable and established dealer with an established history of satisfied customers. Make sure they stand behind the trucks they sell. But even the best, most thoroughly reconditioned used truck may break down as soon as you get it on the road. If that happens, make sure you know who to call to rectify the problem. Have your written warranty documentation with you at all times. Once you take delivery, you become responsible for all the repairs required on your truck not covered in writing.

For quality, reliable used trucks, contact Arrow Truck Sales to help you find the right truck and answer all your questions.