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Old 03-13-2011, 09:42 PM
 
2,632 posts, read 5,687,695 times
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What are the disadvantages of purchasing vehicles from car auctions?

Thanks.
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Old 03-13-2011, 11:05 PM
 
Location: Pomona
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It's AS-IS, WHERE-IS and there's rarely any chance to give it a test drive. It's the tradeoff for (hopefully) a lower price.
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Old 03-13-2011, 11:58 PM
 
Location: Columbia, California
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The auction is the last resort when a car can not be sold normally. Wither it is salvage titles, high mileage cars. These are the cars used as trade ins that big dealer would not be caught dead trying to sell. Many of the buyers at auctions have the small 10 car sales lot.
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:10 AM
 
Location: The Milky Way Galaxy
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I believe most if not all car auctions are cash only which could be a disadvantage for you as well.
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Old 03-14-2011, 06:30 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
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You have to get it for way below what it's worth, and have the cash on hand to replace an engine or transmission and still come out below blue book if you are going to save anything. It's a huge risk but some people are successful at it. A lot of them are cars donated to charity. Think about it. When would you donate a car to charity? Only when no one would buy it, and you'd rather take a deduction than pay to have it hauled to the wrecker.
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:00 AM
 
Location: Birmingham
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It depends on what you are buying. Not all auctions are high mileage junkers that dealers don't want. A lot of the cars that come through are still under warranty. A great many of these will be lease turn ins. It just depends on what line and what auction you go to.Even still, you will probably have to come out of pocket for tires, brakes, detail and probably an oil change. Maybe a key/key fob will be missing, or a nav disc or the manuals. If it is a luxury car all that could be a couple of grand easy.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:39 AM
 
Location: Earth
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Buying from a car auction can mean you not knowing anything about the car's history.

In my situation, I bought a used car from a Police DWI auction once. All i knew up front was some drunk got pulled over for his/her 3rd or 4th DUI and was hauled off the jail and his/her car confiscated. I suppose that should have been a warning sign, but at the time I was trying to get my (now ex) g/f a car on the cheap.

First after getting the keys, I learned the car needed a new battery. No problem.

Then I found the coolant was full of what looked like muddy sludge. Ok flushed that all out.

Then I learned one of the fuel injectors was leaking. Ok fixed that.

Then I later found the head was cracked between the intake and exhaust valves. It was then I decided to throw in the towel because the engine had over 150k on it, the oil light would flicker on and off and on top of that when i did the last oil change, I had antifreeze in the engine...which told me (since it was an action car) that I had ZERO idea how long this had been going on. And when you have coolant in the oil pan, that increases your chances of wiping the bearings.

Other than that the car ran and drove good.
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Old 03-14-2011, 12:31 PM
 
Location: Southwest Pa
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What's your motive for considering an auction? And, what are your mechanical skills, if any? If you have some knowledge of what to look for and how to fix it once you find it then you may indeed save a few bucks vs going to a dealer. But if all you're looking for is just to save money and hope everything works then you may be in for an unhappy experience.

A vehicle is at an auction for only a few reasons. The seller thinks he can't sell it, it's already been on the lot and he knows he can't sell it, the mileage/condition/age is not in line with company policy, he has too many in a similar style (think basic sedans or minivans) or they've discovered a fatal flaw and want to get rid of it before it blows up.
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Old 03-14-2011, 01:11 PM
 
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You have to have the skils to look at a car and evaluate it because its as is. Also remmeber that some will be good depedning on scource but dealers keep the best trade- ins to sell themsleves because there is alot of money in selling good used cars.Often more than new carsas far as profit goes.
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Old 03-14-2011, 01:27 PM
 
2,632 posts, read 5,687,695 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bazzwell View Post
What's your motive for considering an auction? And, what are your mechanical skills, if any? If you have some knowledge of what to look for and how to fix it once you find it then you may indeed save a few bucks vs going to a dealer. But if all you're looking for is just to save money and hope everything works then you may be in for an unhappy experience.

A vehicle is at an auction for only a few reasons. The seller thinks he can't sell it, it's already been on the lot and he knows he can't sell it, the mileage/condition/age is not in line with company policy, he has too many in a similar style (think basic sedans or minivans) or they've discovered a fatal flaw and want to get rid of it before it blows up.

I have 1 year of automotive experience. I'm graduating Lincoln tech in 2 months.

Buy and resell cars.
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