A used van can help save cash, which can be reinvested into other areas of the business. A new van from a dealership will have a warranty, which provides peace of mind, whereas there is more uncertainty surrounding a used vehicle. There are likely to be thousands of miles already on the clock; however, if you decide that used is best, there are a number of key elements to look out for.
Bodywork gives an indication of the health of the vehicle
The bodywork should give an indication of the overall health of the vehicle. Rust can be detected on wings, sills and under the bumpers. It can also be visible on the wheel arches and on the door frame, so it is essential to ascertain whether this is corrosion.
The tyres on the van should be checked thoroughly for tread wear and general wear and tear, including the spare. It is essential to bear in mind that a tread measuring less than 1.6mm is illegal in the UK. The engine quality is also paramount to the functioning of the van. The bonnet should be cold before the engine is started; if it is warm, this could signal an underlying issue.
Take the van on a test drive
It is advisable to take vans on a test drive to ensure the brakes are in solid working order. Attention should be paid to squealing or any unusual noises. Similarly, the lights can provide essential information on the electrical health of the vehicle. If any flickering or dimming is occurring while on a test drive, this can indicate that the lights are not functioning.
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Suspension and steering should also be examined during that all-important test drive, as should the air conditioning and heater.
Checking a used van’s interior is essential to ensure the windows and electronics are working. Ensure no warning lights come on and check that the seatbelts and door locks are functioning correctly.
Potential buyers should also enquire about the full service history and examine the paperwork thoroughly.