For schools, colleges or any other commercial or non-commercial organisations, buying a used bus is the most affordable option. When your financial plans and the cost of new bus do not coincide, still you can buy a bus in excellent conditions. However, making a purchase without doing proper homework is the least intelligent thing one can do. The amount you are going to pay to the dealership or the owner is not the only money you have to shred; there are several ownership costs that may dig deep into your wallet. You certainly do not want your hard-earned money to be poured down the drain. When you do not want to be deceived by an unauthorised dealership offering new and used buses for sale, you have to be acquainted with these five vital factors.
This is the most important consideration while inspecting a used bus. Inspect the frame, interior, and drive train carefully. Make sure that the frame is in good conditions and the drive train is well-maintained over the time. The floor structure, audio equipment, the HVAC system, seats, and all other interior features should be thoroughly inspected. If you find any wear or tear in any interior or exterior feature, look for some other bus.
Remember the ownership cost. If there is no service provider in your neighbourhood, you have to pay more for the maintenance. And, there is an additional headache of finding a service provider in some other city. Your regular maintenance service provider may not have the experience with that type of engine and transmission used in the bus. The mechanic working for you may not be able to fix issues in the engine or other components of the bus. Most of the used buses are beyond warranty. Therefore, the money for replacement will come from your pocket.
Are you going to use it for luxury cross-country trips? Is it for tours around the city? Is it for school or college? The intended use of the bus is a big factor to consider. For example, if you are buying one for cross-country trips, LCD, HVAC, audio system, luggage space and there are several other amenities that must be available in the bus.
Specifics of the Bus
What is the fuel type? What is the type of break used in the vehicle, disc or air breaks? If the driver is not used to air breaks, he needs a steeper learning curve. In the case of a diesel engine, there are some hidden costs. When the vehicle is to be travelled across state lines, you will have to pay International Fuel Tax Association Fees.
History is important, especially the accident history of the bus. You should know about the parts that are replaced after the accident. Are these parts replaced by original and genuine parts? You should ask the owner to provide you with the bus maintenance records.
The bus is an expensive vehicle that will be used for years. It may cost you more than a new bus if you have to call a mechanic for its repair or you have to replace a part after every six months. Therefore, give priority to these five factors while buying a used bus.