A pre-purchase inspection

My son and I have been looking for a reasonably priced truck with a cargo box like you see at many rental places.   U-haul, Penske and Ryder are among the companies that sell their older used trucks.  We found a 1995 Ford 350 U-haul in Cobb County.  The odometer registered almost 190-thousand miles.    At $2400. it was an “as is”  deal.  It wouldn’t start.  We tried to jump it, but the battery in the old truck was too weak.  So we invested$80. in a new battery.  Voila, it cranked.   The V-8 engine sounded OK.  The folks at u-haul agreed to let us take it for a test drive and a pre-purchase inspection.  The inspection cost would be $45.  We drove the more than 15-year-old truck to a trusted auto repair shop.  About 30 minutes after putting the truck on the lift, the mechanic came out and said, “I’d pass on this one.”  He reported it had leaking transmission fluid and oil leaks almost everywhere oil can leak.   He also said there’s a mystery noise in the rear axle area that could spell even bigger trouble.  The mechanic told me that since he found so many mechanical things wrong, he didn’t bother to check the electronics.  He reduced the inspection fee by $10.    I was happy to pay the $35. to avoid future trouble.  We took the truck back to u-haul.  My son retrieved our $80. new battery.  He’ll use it as a spare for his Ford Ranger pickup.  In this instance, the pre-purchase-inspection was well worth the price.

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