Old Car Punchlist for Old Car Buyers

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Old Car Punchlist for Old Car Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:58 am

It seems that the 1 part of the old car hobby that EVERY gearhead enjoys, is "the thrill of the hunt". Wether it's scanning the classifieds, perusing the Auto Trader books in the supermarket, or snooping in backyards as you travel to Aunt Millie's place. We all love the hunt.

If you find something, then you have to objectively look it over. Here's a list to help you:

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RULE #1 NEVER buy a vehicle without test driving it. (parts cars excluded)

RULE #2 If the vehicle does not start, idle or run well, don’t believe that “it only needs a tune-up”

The following check list is only a basic guide to inspecting an old car. If something doesn't pass inspection, then it becomes a negotiating point for a lower price.

SAFETY:
[__] Brakes Pedal should be firm & hold pressure. Verify during test drive.
[__] Tires Check all four tires (and spare) for wear. Uneven wear indicates misalignment and possible worn steering/suspension parts
[__] Steering Components. During test drive check for play in steering wheel, if it pulls to one side, or feels like there's worn or damaged steering/suspension parts.
[__] Headlights/Taillamps Check low/high beams, all rr lights & markers work (incl lisc plate light)
[__] Brake Lights/Turn Signals See if all brake lights work, check turn signals and 4-way flashers
[__] Wipers Turn wipers on. Check intermittent, low and high speeds. Including W/S washers.
[__] Horn See if horn blows
[__] Defrosters Turn heater/climate control to defrost. Check for air blowing out of defroster
ducts. If vehicle has rear defroster, turn on, wait several minutes & feel glass to see if warm
Last edited by Singlefinger on Sat Nov 17, 2012 10:17 am, edited 2 times in total.
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
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Re: Old Car Punchlist for Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:59 am

ENGINE, POWERTRAIN & UNDERHOOD:
[__] Check Engine light All warning lights should go out after a few seconds after you turn the key. If Check Engine/Service Engine Soon light or icon remains on, engine has a problem that requires further diagnosis &/or repair.
[__] Idiot Lights All dash warning lights should come on when key is first turned on, then go out. Test drive vehicle until engine warms up to see if any lights come on.
[__] Dipstick Check oil level and color. If level is low, check for indications of leaking or burning oil. Look for particles in oil that indicate worn bearings. Verify no water in oil (cracked block or bad head gasket).
[__] Engine. Does the engine start & idle smoothly? Accelerate without bogging or stalling? Any hissing, knocking, ticking sounds?
[__] Transmission. Check for slippage on acceleration or between gears on auto trans.
On manuals, the clutch pedal should be smooth with no excess travel, slipping or chattering. Do gears shift smoothly with no grinding? "Popping out" of gear during decelleration means bad syncros.
[__] Underhood Inspection Inspect for oil or coolant leaks, recent repairs, underbody damage. Look for any service stickers that have maintenance/repair history.
[__] Belts & Hoses Inspect belts and hoses for cracks or leaks
[__] Battery Check terminals and cables for corrosion.
Last edited by Singlefinger on Sat Nov 17, 2012 10:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
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Re: Old Car Punchlist for Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:59 am

BODY:
[__] Body/paint: Walk around the vehicle to look for dents/dings, check alignment of doors/hood/trunk, look for ripples in body metal. Checkout wheel well openings/fenders/rocker panels for body filler, look for Bondo or paint overspray as evidence of repairs.
[__] Windshield & Window Glass: Note cracks & scratches.
[__] Doors: Open & close all doors to see that both inside & outside handles work properly.
Check the weatherstrips around doors/trunk for water leaks or wind noise. Do they need replacement?
[__] Trunk/Tailgate: Is there a key? Does trunk open/shut properly? Does it have the spare tire and jack? Does trunk smell musty from water leaks or flood damage?
Last edited by Singlefinger on Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:34 am, edited 2 times in total.
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
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Re: Old Car Punchlist for Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Sat Nov 17, 2012 10:00 am

CONVENIENCE:
[__] AC/Heater: Check how well A/C and heater function
[__] Power Windows, Locks, Seats: Test all power windows & door locks from each door. Check Pwr Seats.
[__] Radio: Turn on and check basic functions (volume, speaker fade, channel select). If the radio has a CD, cassette player, or 8-track, then test to see if it functions.
[__] Interior: Look over all seats, door panels, carpeting, pedals for damage or unusual wear.
[__] Cigarette Lighter: Check function
[__] Interior lights: When any door is opened, see if lights come on.
[__] Alarm/Kill Switch: Do all of these components work properly?
Last edited by Singlefinger on Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:36 am, edited 3 times in total.
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
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Re: Old Car Punchlist for Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Sat Nov 17, 2012 10:01 am

PAPERWORK:
[__] Plates/Registration: Does the vehicle have current plates/registration? If not, check for signs of being Salvage/Rebuilt, flood damage or from out of state issues.
[__] Title: Does seller have title IN HAND?
Compare VINs on title/vehicle (located @ base of the windshield, Driver’s side A-pillar, firewall, or engine).
If VIN numbers do not match, or there is no title, DO NOT BUY THIS VEHICLE!
If VINs appear to be altered,, DO NOT BUY THIS VEHICLE!

[__] Receipts: Review any maintenance/repair receipts.
[__] Terms of Sale: Used vehicles are sold “AS IS”. If anything goes wrong after you buy it, too bad/so sad.
If the seller promises to take care of any problems, offers a warranty/guarantee, or additional parts/pieces, then GET IT IN WRITING & make the seller sign it.
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
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Posts: 416
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:57 pm
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Re: Old Car Punchlist for Old Car Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Wed Dec 05, 2012 12:24 am

[__] Current Value: Review any & all periodicals & websites that can help you establish a value. It may be a good idea to employ the services of a professional appraiser to help establish a price for insurance purposes or for sale.
Go to forums that cater to a specific brand, marque, or club for the given make or model that you are looking at. These sites often have a Classified Ads page for the members.
You can also check out: http://www.nadaguides.com/Classic-Cars

[__] Condition: The 2 most frequently used are the 100 point system or the Six Categories of condition. The 100 Point System is based on this scale:

100 = PERFECT A professional nut and bolt restoration that's complete & perfect in every aspect or a vehicle in absolutely pristine, original condition. The interior and exterior details of the car or truck are usually better than when it came off the production line

90 = EXCELLENT A very well or superior restoration, or a car in excellent original condition that would be a near flawless.

80 = FINE A Complete & fully operable vehicle, possibly an older restoration, or an original car that shows minimal wear. This rating would be considered “show” quality.

70 = VERY GOOD A nice, complete car, possibly an older restoration that might be showing signs of age. This rating is also used to describe a well cared for daily driver.

60 = GOOD This is a "10-footer", a drivable vehicle that shows wear & may need minor mechanical work or cosmetics. This would be considered a candidate for a mild restoration as it's a vehicle with no major flaws.

50 = DRIVER A daily driver is a complete & functional car in good driving condition. It will have flaws but is running and fair cosmetically.

40 = RESTORABLE This vehicle would need restoration, most likely the motor, body, interior and/or chassis all need attention. A car in this class should be more or less complete and not require a tremendous number of parts.

30 = PARTIAL This is a car or truck requires an extensive restoration &/or a significant amount of parts and labor. This class of car is usually very time consuming and costly to restore.

20 = PARTS CAR This class of car is un-restorable. This is a parts car not worthy of restoration. These cars are sometimes called “rust buckets” or "basket cases" or SCRAP.

Most auctions use the six category system, which translates to the 100 point system as shown:

Category 1 would be 90 + points
Category 2 would be 80 - 89 points
Category 3 would be 70 - 79 points
Category 4 would be 60 - 69 points
Category 5 would be 40 - 59 points
Category 6 is any car under 40 points
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
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Re: Old Car Punchlist for Old Car Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Thu Dec 06, 2012 12:28 am

Here's an easy way to get an appraisal electronically by using detailed photographs. Costs about $75.

Value Appraisals
http://www.autoappraisal.com/appraisal. ... id=3402233
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
User avatar
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Posts: 416
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:57 pm
Location: Freakin' Paradise, man!

Re: Old Car Punchlist for Old Car Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:44 pm

Here's a link to a pretty good Bill of Sale form for use when buying or selling a used car.

http://siy.cars.com/pdf/carscom_bill_of_sale.pdf



BTW- PM me if you want me to email you a Word document of the above Old Car Punch List.
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
User avatar
Singlefinger
 
Posts: 416
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:57 pm
Location: Freakin' Paradise, man!

Re: Old Car Punchlist for Old Car Buyers

Postby Singlefinger » Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:25 pm

This article from Hemmings parallels the Punch List pretty well:

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...Buying a long-desired vehicle can be a source of joy for those passionate about cars. It can also be a source of anger, frustration and (potentially great) financial loss, as all too often the newly acquired vehicle fails to meet the seller’s description (or buyer’s expectation) of originality and condition...

http://blog.hemmings.com/index.php/2013 ... refer=news
Autorama -2012 Quote of the weekend:

"Hey, it's those f*ckyou guys from Downstairs!"
User avatar
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Posts: 416
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:57 pm
Location: Freakin' Paradise, man!


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