Anyone ever buy cars from auctions?
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    Anyone ever buy cars from auctions?

    I have a little extra disposable cash and I have a buddy who regularly goes to dealer auctions. He offered to take me to one when he found out I was looking for a cheap car or truck. Anyone ever buy from an auction before. Did you have good or bad luck. One of my friends I grew up with who works at a chevy dealership said that it could be a gold mine or you can buy a money pit. He has seen some trade in's that they immediately took to the auction block because a customer pulled one over on a dealer bad.
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    It's a crapshoot - there's lots of reasons a car/truck ends up on an auction lot. A friend worked at a Toyota dealership and any trade-in they got that was either over five years old or was not a Toyota went to auction no matter the condition. They sent a lot of really good cars to auction, they also sent quite a bit of complete junk. A regular Joe such as you or I is at an extreme disadvantage because the typical auction bidder is experienced and knows exactly what to look for. If the pros aren't bidding up a specific car, you can bet there's a darn good reason,a reason you probably aren't aware of.
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    I've never been to an auction, but most of my car buying (and my wife and I have more vehicles than I care to admit) focuses on what some call hoopties. Older, higher mileage but trustworthy vehicles.

    The key is research. Know the models you're interested in, know their foibles and know if there are any specific years/engines/options to avoid. And of course, know how to spot repaired damage, from accidents or floods or other problems. YouTube is your friend. Samcrac and Auto Auction Rebuilds are good guys to watch. Even if you aren't planning to get something you need to rebuild.

    And auctions are such a big part of the business, if you are in the habit of buying used chances are very good that you've bought a car that was auctioned. All you're doing it going into it with your eyes wide open.
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    Keep in mind that there are different levels of auction also. From high end big money, to manufacture line supported, collector, to take your chance and throw the dice line of cars.

    I have heard of individuals that did well, and dealers who have purchased a total fail. And vice a versa. So you really have to ask yourself "Do you feel Lucky, well do ya"

    I have purchased off of Ebay a number of times, mostly new. OK, all new with the exception of one which was a used kit car....which I gave to a neighbor is he promised to never tell my wife that I purchased it in the first place.


    I did find a car that I was interested in yesterday that would be about the same as buying at an auction is that you have limited time to gain knowledge of. I am south of Dallas, TX and the car in question is in Kenosha, WI. While it is at a dealership and priced right, well close to right anyway, it is still over 800 miles away. It is also 20 years old, and being in the north all of those years I have questions as to any body or carriage rust. The dealer did send some bottom photos and it looks pretty clean. I would sure hate to step into a $10K money pit however.
    Last edited by jonrjen; 12-08-2019 at 11:28 AM.

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    I think the only time i would do a car auction is maybe if i had money to spend and wanted to restore it . If your just wanting a vehicle for transportation in a small community and drive very little look for a older Toyota or Nissan type vehicle . If you want something for tinkering with get an old ford or chevy . If you want something dependable for occasional long trips don’t use auctions , check out small private dealers or self owners wanting to trade up , not someone just trying to unload a quick sale . Spend wisely these days . Very few good deals can be had cheaply .
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    I knew a guy who bought three cars at auction with the intent of flipping them for a profit. They ran well enough for the short time he used them. Considering the time he put into the effort, he decided the profit wasn't worth it.

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    I used to go to them and have bought one vehicle from one, but you really have to know what you are looking at and what to watch out for when you go to an auto auction.

    Do plenty of research on the vehicle you are looking to purchase at an auction. This includes what problems that the engine or other mechanical or electrical systems may have and the common symptoms and signs to look for to determine if that particular vehicle has that problem. Again, your inspection MUST be thorough on an auction car.

    From my own experience, I have seen some rather shady used car dealers do what we called "sand and shoot, steam clean, sew it up, and shove it out" type of auction flips, that got many to buy vehicles that should have been in a junkyard, not at an auction. They did a quick paint job, steam cleaned under the hood and sometimes the undercarriage, sewed up any rips in the upholstery or bought saddle blanket type covers, and set out for the auction for a quick buck. They were later put out of business through word of mouth among many in the industry.

    Again, go into an auction with your eyes wide open, know what to look for, do your due diligence, even bring an inexpensive OBD II code reader to check for codes, and a notebook on what those codes mean, and you may find a good car. If you don't, you may just end up with someone else's junk that should have become a parts car.
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    I work on cars in my spare time as my side hustle. I figured as long as I don't buy a flop with a blown up motor, transmission that is just gone. I should be good. I'm prolly going to be buying ford and chevy vehicles. I have two guys who have a constant stream of used motors and transmissions. As long as I don't go to far from the common stuff. the 4.8/5.3 and 6.0 GM stuff the 5.0 coyotes, 4.6 fords, some dodges. I should be good. I can get a used motor and transmission for about 4-600 bucks each. So I mean if I don't get stupid and buy a BMW or something that's just out there and expensive to fix. Well, it shouldn't be a problem. Like I said fords and chevys wouldn't be to incredibly expensive for me to fix and flip either. I was just curious to see what peoples experiences where.
    Speed doesn't kill you. It's the sudden stop. That's what gets you.

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    what is eBay's policy when buying a car off the site.
    Quote Originally Posted by jonrjen View Post
    Keep in mind that there are different levels of auction also. From high end big money, to manufacture line supported, collector, to take your chance and throw the dice line of cars.

    I have heard of individuals that did well, and dealers who have purchased a total fail. And vice a versa. So you really have to ask yourself "Do you feel Lucky, well do ya"

    I have purchased off of Ebay a number of times, mostly new. OK, all new with the exception of one which was a used kit car....which I gave to a neighbor is he promised to never tell my wife that I purchased it in the first place.


    I did find a car that I was interested in yesterday that would be about the same as buying at an auction is that you have limited time to gain knowledge of. I am south of Dallas, TX and the car in question is in Kenosha, WI. While it is at a dealership and priced right, well close to right anyway, it is still over 800 miles away. It is also 20 years old, and being in the north all of those years I have questions as to any body or carriage rust. The dealer did send some bottom photos and it looks pretty clean. I would sure hate to step into a $10K money pit however.
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    Speed doesn't kill you. It's the sudden stop. That's what gets you.

 

 
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