Car evaluations - the good, the bad & the ugly:
Please, please, please, help me help you. Twice in 2 weeks we’ve had cars in to “look over” AFTER they’ve been purchased. Both times the results were ugly. We frequently look cars over (at no charge if the car is brought to us or at a modest fee if it requires a lot of time.) But even at that, it’s money well spent for several reasons.
1. If the car is relatively sound but with a few problems here & there, it’s grounds for some additional negotiating on price.
2. If there are major issues, you have grounds for some big time price concessions or you are free to walk away if the cost of repairs exceed the car’s value.
3. If the car’s everything it’s represented to be & the price is right, we’ve just confirmed & reinforced your astute mechanical & business capabilities ( that’s a cheap ego boost).
We don’t “appraise” cars, as it’s between the buyer & seller to determine value, but we, and other shops like ours, can put it on a lift, check it out from top to bottom & tell you what we see, including the good, the bad & the ugly.
While we like to think that we’ve just about seen it all, we are frequently surprised at what we find, such as duct tape or metallic HVAC tape applied & covered with undercoating and/or bondo to give the illusion of a solid body or frame component. We’ve discovered tar paper glued to rotted frames & then heavily undercoated to give the appearance of solid steel, floor pans made of wire screen & bondo, cracked & broken shock towers literally built with bondo & painted to look solid.
On these types of repairs, I know “necessity is the mother of invention”, but I’m not quite sure what the necessity is here except a cheap cover-up for a quick sale.
Please help us, and shops like ours, help you. “Ready, fire, aim.”