What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run away?
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Community Lounge, Introductions and General Discussion Discussion, What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run away? in General Discussion; For me, it is ostentatious, oversized rims and "little old lady" stories. I also get a kick out of "the ...
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    Cadillac_Fan's Avatar
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    What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run away?

    For me, it is ostentatious, oversized rims and "little old lady" stories. I also get a kick out of "the car doesn't currently run - it just needs a $10 part from the salvage yard" line.

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    Ranger's Avatar
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    Re: What Are The Major Red Flags When Looking At Used Cars That Make You Walk/Run Awa

    Reminds me of a '93 Deville I went to look at many, many moons ago. The lifters where ticking like a Singer sewing machine. She said all it needed was an oil change. I might have been born at night, but it wasn't LAST night.

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    Re: What Are The Major Red Flags When Looking At Used Cars That Make You Walk/Run Awa

    A pool of anti-freeze/oil mixture running out from underneath. A big cloud of oil smoke that "clears when it warms up".
    Cadillac_Fan and Cadillac_Fan like this.
    Don't mess with Binky Bear!


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    Re: What Are The Major Red Flags When Looking At Used Cars That Make You Walk/Run Awa

    "What do we have to do to get this deal done today?"

    "How much do you want to spend per month?"
    Jesda, Jesda, Cadillac_Fan and 9 others like this.
    The above post is my 2 cents....nothing more.

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    Re: What Are The Major Red Flags When Looking At Used Cars That Make You Walk/Run Awa

    "Mechanic's Special"

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    Kingoftypos is online now Cadillac Owners Master
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    Back in the 90's. a local dealership had this thing going on. Where you went inside and grabbed a sign. The sign said "Just looking!" so you'll just show a sales rep when they come around to talk with you. Kind of reminded me if Bill Envall's "here's your sign."

    KOT

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    Re: What Are The Major Red Flags When Looking At Used Cars That Make You Walk/Run Awa

    Aftermarket wheels. Excessive window tint. Evidence of tinkering with the air intake system. K&N anything. Evidence of tinkering with the OEM suspension. Aftermarket sound system. Hack jobs for muffler "upgrades". Oddball alarm and remote start systems, especially along with amateur install work. Rust in the lower fender and door seams. Over 100K miles. For a Northstar engine, earlier than year model 2000. An uncomfortable feeling that a transmission or clutch is not just right. Filthy oil on the engine dipstick. Overfilled transmission. ANY evidence of oil, gas or coolant snake oil use.

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    Re: What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run awa

    Anything but a relative low mileage 100% original car, preferably one or maybe two adult owner car, paper work to support the car was serviced according to manufacturers recommendation and by an authorized dealer. I have had good luck with all three of the Sevilles I have owned!

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    I can handle lack of maintenance over hack jobs. It's usually pretty obvious when a car has been rode hard and put away wet. The only time I didn't go with my first instinct I got burned.

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    How about...


    "This car was owned by one of our mechanics."

    Yeah, and is that supposed to impress me? We all know that a mechanic doesn't work on their own cars properly because they've been doing it all day at work.

    KOT

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    Re: What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run awa

    Red Flag? If it was ever owned by one guy that worked for me.

    Great human being but didn't care a thing about cars.

    He NEVER washed his car. He still had the window sticker glue rectangle on the car 4 years after purchase. The car looked so bad that the dealer took their logo and license frame off the car when he had it in for service.

    But he made the best trade-in deal I ever saw. I went with him to pick up his new car. I am not making this up, the back seat of his old car was filled with fast food bags and wrappers. I mean filled, like to the bottom of the windows. The dash, console and even headliner were covered with dried sticky brown liquid, apparently from an emergency stop while holding a Big Gulp. In the passenger seat footwell he had a can of oil, a half empty bottle of antifreeze and some jumper cables. He told me he hoped we didn't need to stop many times because the clutch was going out. And it was. The last few miles it was slipping even in low gears at low RPMs. Now he had never talked trade but told them he wanted to trade his old car in and wanted $6,000. High private sale blue book was probably around $4k. But it was the worst shape car I had ever seen. You would have to pay me $1,000 to take it. The salesman had seen the car and decided he could just kill the trade in by low balling. So he offered him $1000, positive the buyer who wanted $6k would reject the offer. His mouth wasn't even closed before my friend said: "deal".

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    Re: What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run awa

    Red flags for me?

    Any ad that states "selling for friend" or "must sell, leaving country".
    Any ad on a pre 04 Northstar that reads "new rad or water pump or serviced cooling system, etc"
    Jesda, Jesda, Cadillac_Fan and 1 others like this.

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    Re: What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run awa

    Quote Originally Posted by ted tcb View Post
    Any ad on a pre 04 Northstar that reads "new rad or water pump or serviced cooling system, etc"
    Likewise for all H-4 Subarus. Learned that one the hard way this month.

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    Re: What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run awa

    Well from the years i'v watched my family buy cars and since i'v only really bought two cars in my life. One time back when my father bought a 98 Deville nice car but he was looking for a 00-01 Eldo in white well we went to our local dealer Gold Coast. And they had one Eldo that was a 2000 in white ETC if i recall and there was a huge dent in the bumper well at that time back then the car was still going for a ton! So my father asked the salesmen if they would fix that dent if he bought it. The salesmen said no because you were buying a used car that has 28K miles so my father walked away from that car and found the 98 that was perfect. There's been countless times where we have walked away from a car even new because of little things. Like the one me and my father went to look at the speedo was stuck at 40mph and a plastic piece off of the turn signal. The dealer said they would fix only the Speedo since that was a safety hazzard. That's all long post from me!

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    Re: What are the major red flags when looking at used cars that make you walk/run awa

    Strange noises and modifications. Also, evidence of a lack of regular maintanence.
    Cadillac_Fan and Cadillac_Fan like this.

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