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Old Trucks For Sale - Buying Tips for Old Trucks

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When shopping for old trucks for sale, know what to look for. Anyone can walk up and see if a truck looks nice, yet not know if he or she is getting a good deal. However, do not feel like you have to be a mechanic to buy a good old truck either.

Where to look.
A variety of methods can turn up old trucks. For sale signs stuck in the windshield of a truck beside the highway can be some of the best sources. Oftentimes this truck can be under priced because someone just wants to get rid of it. You can also look through used car lots and occasionally find a good deal on old trucks for sale. Car and truck shows bring out some good wheels and even though you often cannot purchase an old truck there, you know better what to look for and how your truck should look. Beyond all of that, online shopping goes farther and provides more options for finding a good old pickup for sale. Be ready to act fast, however, as deals online will have plenty of suitors.

What to look for.
A variety of things can help you know if you have found the right vehicle. First, take a good first look. Judging by its overall condition on the outside might indicate what the vehicle has been used for. Dents indicate construction or farm work. A winch or heavy bumper may indicate the truck has done logging or hauled heavy loads. All these things should alert you to the concept that the 100,000 miles on the odometer of a working truck do not match the 100,000 of a commuting truck. Generally if a person has taken good care of the exterior and interior of a vehicle, the engine and transmission have received proper care as well. On the other hand, just because a vehicle looks good does not promise a solid set of wheels. Even wrecked vehicles can have new panels and paint, and a pressure washed engine can look shiny new yet have a bad oil leak underneath.

What to look out for.
You want to purchase a legal, useful old truck. For sale vehicles have a hidden history. You only know what the seller tells you. Make sure the VIN code at the bottom, driver’s side of the windshield matches the VIN code on the title papers and registration. Look at the ignition to see if it has been tampered with—a sure sign of a stolen vehicle.
Look in the bed of the truck. Has it been pounded to death from too heavy of loads? Smashed bed metal and large dents may indicate abusive use such as loading cattle or dropping in heavy logs. Look underneath for rusting or rotting metal on the undercarriage or frame.
Open the hood and see if the battery cables are clean or rigged up. Look at the radiator fluid (only when it is cool), and see if it is rusty or chocolate colored. Radiator coolant should be bright green. Rusty water indicates an engine that has sat a long time. Muddy brown water indicates an oil leak which will need a head gasket replaced. Check the oil dipstick and look for latte color, creamy residue where the oil level shows. Foamy white discoloration in the oil indicates a water leak in the block—perhaps a bad head gasket or a bad head.
Finally, ask to start and drive any of these old trucks for sale. Listen to how the motor runs to see if it fires smoothly or jumps and sputters. Missing engines may need new plugs and wires or a expensive valve job. How does it go down the road? Steering should be tight, not sloppy; brakes should respond quickly, and the transmission should not slip when starting off or shifting gears.

Know what you are willing to compromise when looking for old trucks for sale. If you can do your own repairs or restoration, you will be able to choose from many more vehicles and find better prices, too. An old truck in perfect working order will cost far more than an old truck needing lots of TLC.

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