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Lemon of the Week (September 28th, 2022)

Another week, another Lemon! Lemon Squad takes to Instagram each week to get input from our followers. 

How the Lemon of the Week Works

On Wednesdays, we post a poll to our Instagram account that includes an image of two cars and some brief bullet points on the vehicle’s condition. Followers then can vote for the car they view as the bigger Lemon. The following week, we released a blog (like this) to provide readers with insight into an inspection report and what it can reveal about a used vehicle. So if you missed the poll last week, get involved by following us on Instagram. For other information or to stay up to date with what is new and exciting with Lemon Squad, check out our Twitter and Facebook!

The Winner

This week, the winning Lemon (or the car in the worst shape) was the 2009 Isuzu NPR. At the time of inspection, this vehicle was just short of 160,000 miles, making general wear and tear based on the age and mileage to be expected. We’ll dive into the interior, exterior, and road test results as part of our standard Commercial Vehicle Inspections procedure.

One of our unique features is choosing an inspection tailored to the type of vehicle you are looking to buy. When you select the specific inspection for the vehicle type, we match you up with an inspector who specializes in that category of inspection and vehicle. This provides a trained eye that is qualified to evaluate the car at an elevated professional level

2009 Isuzu NPR

 

The Interior Inspection

In general, the interior inspection revealed an overall fine condition for a commercial vehicle. However, in the thorough walkthrough, we also found a few noteworthy things. All the seats were in good condition except for the center back seat, which had some damage. The left door’s physical key did not work in the lock at the time of the inspection. The dashboard of the vehicle was missing the center cover. The glove box lid would not stay closed. The right sun visor clip was missing. 

The biggest thing the interior inspection revealed was rust under the left front floor mat. Our inspection noted that the cab had a lot of black undercoating, so that the floors may have additional unexposed rust. We covered how rust can be very hazardous in a vehicle in our previous Lemon of the Week blog. 

The Exterior Walkthrough

The vehicle’s exterior was in much worse condition than the interior. The windshield washers did not work at the time of inspection. The paint was in bad shape as the logo removal had taken off some finish on both sides of the box. 

Beyond that, the vehicle’s paint showed wear and tear consistent with the age and mileage. The left headlight lens was cracked, and the rear lenses of the exterior lights needed cleaning and possible polishing. The left mirror is disconnected and is missing a lower panel. A significant dent was apparent in the left side rear of the bumper. The front bumper was also cracked on the right side. There were additional dents and scratches throughout the exterior of the vehicle. 

The apparent rust on the vehicle’s interior was much more prevalent on the exterior. Lots of frame rust and overspray were found under the cab. In addition, both of the rear doors had rusted through on the inner panels. 

The Mechanical Inspection

The vehicle’s mechanics were also inspected, showing a bit more wear. The radiator reservoir cap was missing. The belts within the engine showed some varnish. The seller informed the inspector that the catalyst was stolen. Finally, the lighting within the box was hanging down below where it should have been. 

The Test Drive

Why a test drive? A drive test provides the inspector with a deeper look into the vehicle’s performance and can often allude to other problems that may have been previously masked.

So far, the drive test showed that the engine and all other components ran well at the time of inspection. The only issue at the time of inspection was that the whole box was loaded during the drive. 

Overall, the inspection report provided information unavailable through the seller’s advertisements. This is the most significant advantage of a pre-purchase used car inspection. By hiring an inspector, you can get an unbiased, third-party opinion of the condition and performance of your potential purchase. This information proves invaluable in making an intelligent and educated choice and providing insight for negotiations. 

So don’t buy a lemon – use Lemon Squad. 

Lemon of the Week (September 14th, 2022)

The most recent Lemon Of The Week is here, and it is, drum roll please: Car #1: the 2011 MINI Cooper Clubman

Each week, we take a poll from our followers on the Lemon Squad Instagram page. 

Followers are provided one image and brief information about two cars that Lemon Squad has previously inspected. They then have the chance to vote on which vehicle they think is the “Biggest Lemon” (the car in the worst shape of the two). 

The following week, we will release a blog (like this) so that you can get a bit more information about the car’s condition and why a pre-purchase inspection is so important. So if you missed out last week, get involved in the next poll. 

We post a new survey every Wednesday on our Instagram story! Stay connected with us on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram!

In the deep dive into this inspection, we will look at the vehicle’s exterior, interior, and performance. In every Lemon Squad inspection, customers get a thorough report of the condition of the car aesthetically, as well as the condition of the mechanic components and performance. So let’s get into the report!

Interior

The interior of the vehicle was overall in good shape. 

The only significant wear beyond what is normal was the left front seat. The cover was worn with an apparent tear on the bottom of this seat. The other parts within the interior only showed general wear that is expected for the age and mileage of the vehicle. All electrical components within the interior were fully functional at the time of inspection. 

Exterior

The exterior of the car was in worse condition than the interior. 

Excessive scratching was apparent around the whole body of the vehicle. Both rear tailgate panels had large dents from impact assumed to be caused by a collision. The bulb malfunction light was on. The door mirrors showed miscellaneous scratches. The windshield had many rock chips. 

Rock chips not only pose a threat not only to the aesthetics of the vehicle, but to the safety of the driver as they weaken the windshield overall, making further damage and injury more probable. In this weakened state, rock chips can spread like spiderwebs, impairing your ability to see and drive safely. You even run the risk of the windshield fully shattering from debris from the road or high winds. 

For this reason, it is absolutely necessary to get rock chips repaired or, depending on the severity, the entire windshield replaced. 

Minor surface rust was found on the underside, and as mentioned in a previous Lemon Of The Week, rust can be a big concern. The engine was seeping oil from the underside, although no drips were apparent during the inspection. It is recommended that this area of the vehicle be cleaned off and checked to verify the source and severity of the leaks. 

Test Drive

Finally, the driving test revealed the most significant issue with the vehicle. 

During the drive test, the inspector noted that they could hear what sounded like a squealing and growling noise, which is most likely due to an issue with the wheel bearings. It resonated throughout the car during the whole test drive, making it clear that a complete diagnosis is needed to gauge the severity and cause of the noise. 

In addition to this apparent noise, the inspector noticed a slight pulsation from the brake pedal when coming to a stop. 

Warped rotors put your car at the risk of a total brake system failure. Yes – it is as bad as it sounds! This type of failure can result in delayed stopping, or even the inability to stop, putting you and others around you at risk. This issue can be instigated when a vehicle has warped rotors, so it is highly encouraged to avoid all driving and immediately contact a mechanic. 

By using Lemon Squad to complete a Standard Pre-Purchase Inspection, this buyer got an honest condition on the quality and performance of this vehicle. Misrepresentation runs rampant in the used car industry, so verifying an automobile before purchase is vital. 

Pre-purchase inspections also provide more negotiation power to the purchasing party. With more insight and an honest third-party opinion, buyers can get a deal that reflects the vehicle and its quality. 

So, if you are thinking about buying a car, get started booking an inspection with Lemon Squad today! 

Lemon of the Week (September 7th, 2022)

Another poll has led to another Lemon of the week, the winner being car number 2… the 2012 Volkswagen Tiguan

Each week, Lemon Squad takes a poll with our Instagram followers to pick which of two lemons that our inspectors have previously inspected is the biggest Lemon. With a few highlights of the issues we found and a photo, followers can vote for the car they think is the bigger Lemon. 

The following week, we released a blog (just like this) to dive deeper into the inspections and what exactly makes this car a lemon. 

These polls are weekly, so if you missed the last one, get involved in the next one! We publish the poll on our Instagram story each Wednesday, and users have 24 hours to place their votes. 

2012 Volkswagen Tiguan

A deeper dive into this inspection amplifies a pre-purchase inspection’s importance. So now, let’s get into what was revealed during the inspection: 

The inspection started with a dead battery and the inspector could not verify the mileage. This was not a great first impression!

Since the battery was dead, the inspector could not conduct a road test. 

A road test is standard for nearly all Lemon Squad’s inspections as it often reveals any possible hidden issues in the car’s performance and condition. Without the road test, there is still uncertainty about the car’s ability to drive well or whether it drives at all. 

The vehicle’s interior, specifically the electrical components, was difficult to inspect because of the dead battery. Beyond that, there was an odor within the vehicle that alluded to a water leak. Unfortunately, the source of the leak was not revealed during the inspection, so a further diagnostic is necessary. 

The vehicle’s exterior was in decent condition based on the year and mileage of the car. 

Minor miscellaneous scratches were found around the vehicle and other minor imperfections may have been covered by dust, as the car was filthy at the inspection time. The underside of the vehicle showed signs of rust, which as mentioned in our previous Lemon Of The Week Blog, can cause major issues.

As for the mechanic part of the inspection, there are a few issues with this car that will need to be addressed if the customer were to purchase it. 

The engine coolant needs to be replaced, and the whole system should be flushed. The engine oil should be changed as it was very dirty. Active oil leaks were apparent within the engine. The brake fluid was old and dirty, requiring flushing and replacement. The rotors have a ring of rust around them, and the brake pads had less than 50% remaining. 

The key takeaway from this inspection should be the value of a pre-purchase inspection. In the used car world, false advertising runs rampant. 

For individuals unable to view the vehicle in person before purchase, claims of the car’s capabilities cannot be tested. With mobile pre-purchase inspections, everyone can get an unbiased third opinion of the quality and performance of a vehicle before it’s too late. 

Purchasing a vehicle without viewing it in person is like playing Russian Roulette with your wallet. 

Sometimes you are safe and the money you spend on the used car is money well spent. But sometimes you will waste thousands of dollars on a car that needs further costly repairs and is unreliable. 

You might even fall victim to a scam and purchase a vehicle that doesn’t even exist!

Rather than buying a car and experiencing the stress of false advertisement, Lemon Squad sends trained professionals to inspect a vehicle honestly. They can also arm you with the information you need to negotiate a better price. 

So get started by booking an inspection today, and avoid buying a Lemon!

Lemon of the Week (August 31st, 2022)

After a very close vote, the Lemon of the week is finally here, the winner being car number 1 – the 2010 GMC Terrain. 

What Is ‘Lemon Of The Week’?

Each week Lemon Squad takes a poll from our Instagram followers to determine the Lemon of the Week. 

Users are provided the choice between two vehicles previously inspected by one of our many inspectors. We will note just a couple of the issues found during the inspection service, but keep in mind that we call these cars “Lemons” for a reason!

After the results are accounted for, we will give all the juicy details about this vehicle, what the inspection revealed, and why it is essential to get a pre-purchase auto inspection when buying a used car. 

The Inspection

Let’s do a deep dive into the inspection, as this vehicle does not look too sour based on the photos alone. 

The vehicle’s interior showed a lot of wear and tear on the steering wheel and front seats. Beyond that, the interior showed expected wear for a used car. The radio had staticky sounds, and the antenna was missing, otherwise, most electrical components were fully functional. 

The exterior of the vehicle was in worse condition than the interior. 

The hood of the car was misaligned and the front bumper was not flush with the body of the car. Minor dings and scratches were apparent around the vehicle’s body and dents on the left and right fender and right quarter panel. In addition, rust was found on the doors, hood, tailgate, undercarriage, and right fender. 

If rust is noted in an inspection, you will want to consider whether that car is worth the money is is being listed at. As a general rule: Rust that is only skin deep, that’s a vehicle you can keep. 

If the rust spots are small, they are relatively inexpensive to repar. Therefore, minor or cosmetic rust might not be a deal breaker. However, if the rust affects more components of the car like the frame, you might want to be a little more weary.

The reason why rust is so bad for your car is because it makes the iron components very brittle. If a car with excessive rust were to be involved in an accident, it may seriously compromise the safety features of your vehicle. 

Finally, the driving test revealed even more issues with the vehicle!

The engine coolant reservoir was overfilled. The belts of the vehicle were harshly worn. The engine had multiple oil leaks. The transmission showed fluid leaks. The transfer case leaked. There was an apparent exhaust leak near the front end of the vehicle. The car’s shocks, ball joints, and tie rods showed severe wear and tear. The engine of the vehicle, when driven, had a rough idle. The transmission made a whining noise when the car was accelerating. The suspension performance left much to be desired as the ride quality was poor, with many knocks and clunks. The alignment of the vehicle was off-center and jerky. The car’s system showed many lights, including the Tire Pressure System, a warning message, and codes stored. 

Phew – that’s a lot!

Many cosmetic issues were minor for this specific vehicle, yet the car was in worse shape than advertised. Without the road test, this potential buyer could have fallen victim to a Lemon. The road test is an essential part of Lemon Squad’s Standard Inspection

The Standard Inspection is designed for cars less than 20 years old. By choosing the proper inspection for the vehicle, you have access to highly trained inspectors specializing in the issues and warning signs for that vehicle’s classification. Lemon Squad matches inspectors to the right job to guarantee you get a qualified, uninvolved third-party opinion on the vehicle’s quality and condition. 

Why is a Pre-Purchase Inspection Necessary?

A pre-purchase inspection offers many benefits to potential buyers. If you cannot see a car in person before purchasing, a pre-purchase inspection decreases your risk of scams or false advertising. It also lets you learn more about the vehicle, its performance, and its condition. It also allows potential buyers to make an informed decision, increasing buyers’ bargaining power. 

For these reasons, pre-purchase auto inspections are a valuable tool for used car buyers. 

Lemon Squad makes it easier than ever to avoid buying a lemon. With inspectors available in every zip code within the United States, you can get an honest opinion on any car you are looking to buy. 

So get started today and book an inspection with Lemon Squad! 

Lemon Of The Week

The winner of last week’s poll is… car number 2, the 1966 Cadillac Eldorado. 

Each week, Lemon Squad is taking a poll from their Instagram story, giving followers a choice between two cars we have previously completed inspections on. Once users have taken their vote, we tally up the results to reveal which car has been dubbed the “biggest lemon” Then we dive a little deeper into the winning Lemon’s inspection report and reveal all the juicy details! 

This week, the biggest lemon is this 1966 Cadillac Eldorado. At first glance, the car looks to be in beautiful shape. Based on the images, this vintage car looks like a rare find in exceptional condition. However, thanks to the mobile pre-purchase inspection that the potential buyer requested, some dark secrets about this vehicle were revealed.

The inspector was unable to locate a VIN plate on the vehicle. The VIN allows individuals a deeper look into the car’s history and is an identifier for that specific car, similar to a fingerprint, as no VIN is the same. 

As the inspector began to delve into the vehicle’s actual condition, many more red flags were raised. The exterior of the vehicle, although seemingly perfect within the images of the car, had quite a few issues. The windshield wiper blades and windshield washer did not operate, and there were apparent chips on the glass of the windshield. The exterior lights of the vehicle were inoperable. The hood and trunks of the car were misaligned. Scratches were found on the vehicle’s trunk, right panel, and right fender. The paint was chipped on the hood and right fender, and fish eyes and paint bubbles were apparent on the rear. The seals on the rear windows showed dry rot. Rust was evident on the vehicle’s undercarriage, and the frame appeared to have been repaired. The inspector noted an oil leak at the front of the engine and intake manifold; however, the severity of the leak was undetermined. Finally, the engine coolant reservoir was empty. These issues only reveal what was discovered on the vehicle’s exterior, and the interior issues were comparable. 

The interior components showed wear beyond the years. It is important to remember that older cars will often have general wear and tear to an extent. If a car is properly maintained even after 50+ years, the car can be competitively priced as a collector vehicle. This 1966 Cadillac Eldorado however was a little worse than expected. 

Within the interior, the steering wheel was cracked and showed overall wear. There was a very apparent hole in the front left footwell carpet. The cruise control was none operational at the time of inspection. The trim of the right front seat was loose, with wires sticking out from the underside of the seat. The clocks within the vehicle were non-operational. The radio did show signs of power; however, it was only capable of playing static, and the antenna showed no sign of power. The vehicle’s power locks did not have power (no pun intended) nor the driver’s door master switch for the right rear window. The fuel gauge and temperature gauge were also inoperable. The center console of the vehicle was loose, and the air conditioning could not get cold. 

Finally, the road test revealed operational issues within the vehicle. A road test is standard practice for a classic inspection performed by Lemon Squad. A classic inspection is intended for any car that is over 20 years old. The advantage of a classic inspection on a vintage vehicle is the thorough, organized and informed perspective of the inspector. Inspectors are selected for certain jobs based on their specialty and experience, meaning that they know the common issues and warning signs for specific vehicle classifications. When driving, the inspector found that the car’s steering had play, and the vehicle’s front end wandered. Upon braking, it was discovered that the car pulled. A car that pulls when braking can often indicate a failing brake caliper. 

Why is a Pre-Purchase Auto Inspection Important? 

Based on the photos of this car, many, if not all, of these cosmetic and internal problems, could have gone undetected until post-purchase. Not being able to see a vehicle in person poses a unique threat to buyers – the threat of buying a lemon. 

Flashy, well lit images can disguise many faults in a vehicle. This buyer could make an informed decision based on the findings by taking advantage of Lemon Squad’s mobile pre-purchase inspectors. With the inspection report, this potential buyer could weigh not only the cost of the vehicle but also the costs that would be incurred fixing the vehicle into an operable state. 

Everything You Need To Know About Mobile Pre-Purchase Auto Inspection

What is a Mobile Pre-Purchase Auto Inspection? 

A mobile pre-purchase auto inspection examines a used vehicle before purchase without the hassle of transporting the vehicle to an auto shop. 

It allows an unbiased perspective on the condition and performance of the car. Mobile inspectors provide insight to buyers who cannot see a vehicle in person before purchase, often giving the buyer a more realistic expectation for the car, a more knowledgeable choice, and even added negotiation power. 

How Does a Mobile Pre-Purchase Inspection Work?

The inspector will go to the vehicle’s location and inspect the condition of the external and internal components of the car you are considering buying. The mobile inspector will often arrive at an unannounced time to prevent the seller from implementing temporary fixes on the vehicle to trick an inspector into giving a car a higher overall score. 

After completing the inspection, your inspector will create a report. We try to get you the inspection report within 24 hours but that is not always guaranteed. The quick turnaround time is a vital part of car buying, as cars sell quickly. Once you have the report, including notes from the inspection, and images of the vehicle, you are able to make an informed decision on if you want to move forward with the purchase. 

Why is it Important? 

Imagine this: You just bought your car, out of state, and two weeks later, it breaks down while you are driving to work. The dealer had told you the car was in great condition, but you can’t help but think maybe it’s not in as good of condition as the dealer had led you to believe (as you are now stranded on the side of the road and late for work). What else could go wrong? Once you finally get it towed to the mechanic you are informed that the car is in fact toast. Time to look for another car…Don’t you wish this was preventable? 

Well, it is! With a pre-purchase inspection, buyers can now get an honest opinion on the condition and performance of a vehicle before purchasing. An assessment helps prevent bad purchases or misrepresented vehicles from taking your time and money. In other words, it can stop you from wasting money on a Lemon.

A Lemon (Car): A vehicle that turns out to have several manufacturing issues affecting its safety, value or utility- a vehicle that is flawed

A pre-purchase inspection should always be performed when buying a used vehicle. Used car dealerships have hundreds of tricks to move cars quickly (even if they are not in the best condition). When you cannot see the vehicle firsthand, an opinion from someone not involved in the sale can reveal vital information that may affect your purchasing decision. Having the most information possible enables you to make an informed and educated decision, even without seeing the car. 

Lemon Squad offers trained professionals to any zip code within the United States. A professional inspector adds an additional layer of information as they are well versed and experienced in what issues to look out for with used cars. The nature of a professional inspection allows for a more in depth understanding of the quality of a used vehicle. 

What type of Mobile Pre-purchase Inspections are there? 

Lemon Squad offers six different types of inspections and multiple add-ons, so you get all the necessary information. In addition, the different types of assessments provided by Lemon Squad allow for a more vehicle-specific inspection and an inspection report from an individual who has experience with that type of vehicle. 

  • Standard 
  • Classic 
  • Exotic
  • Motorcycle 
  • RV’s
  • Commercial

Standard

Standard inspections are designed for cars no older than 20 years. It is the ideal inspection for most general, everyday drivers. It includes: 

  • A computer diagnosis of engine, transmission, ABS, and airbags 
  • A comprehensive mechanical assessment of complete drive train 
  • Inspection of the steering, suspension, and brakes 
  • Examination for previous accidents or flood damage 
  • A road test
  • Fluid level checks 
  • 25+ images of the vehicle. 

All of this information will be included in the inspection report. You will generally receive the report within 24-48 hours of your inspection. 

Classic 

Classic inspections are geared toward any car that is over 20 years old. Generally, classic inspections deal with vintage vehicles that appeal to consumers through their style, experience, exclusivity, and craftsmanship. It includes: 

  • A comprehensive mechanical review of the engine and transmission
  • A complete drive-line inspection
  • Inspection of the steering, suspension, and brakes
  • Examination for previous accidents or flood damage
  • Check for previous body repairs or prior hidden damage, rust, and Bondo 
  • Verification of the engine and transmission numbers
  • A road test 
  • 40+ images of the vehicle 

Included in the classic inspection package is an emphasis on age deterioration, making it clear to you the vehicle’s quality, wear and tear. 

Exotic 

Exotic pre-purchase inspections are aimed at higher-end, luxury vehicles. It includes:

  • A computer diagnosis of engine, transmission, ABS, and Air-bag 
  • A comprehensive mechanical assessment of complete drive-train 
  • Inspection of the steering, suspension, and brakes
  • Examination for previous accidents or flood damage
  • A road test 
  • 25+ images of the vehicle

The exotic inspection caters to more detail, care, and attention-based inspection. When you are thinking of purchasing a high-end vehicle sight unseen, a quality inspection is a valuable tool. 

Motorcycle 

Motorcycle inspections include all motorcycles, no matter the bike’s make, model, or age. It includes: 

  • A comprehensive mechanical review of the engine and transmission 
  • A complete drive-line inspection 
  • Inspection of the steering, suspension, and brakes
  • Examination for previous accidents or flood damage
  • Check for previous body repairs, rust, Bondo, and hidden damage
  • Verification of the engine and transmission numbers
  • 25+ pictures of the motorcycle 

A motorcycle inspection provides accurate insight into the condition of a bike while emphasizing any apparent age deterioration. 

RV 

RV inspections are for all types of Motorhome Recreational Vehicles. Lemon Squad offers two types of assessments for RVs – Motorhome inspections and towables inspections. Motorhome and towables inspections include: 

  • A comprehensive mechanical inspection of complete drive-train 
  • 120 volt systems and appliances
  • Review of all appliances, including stove, fridge, heater, air conditioning, and water
  • Fresh water and drainage check 
  • Audio and video component inspection 
  • Generator and LP gas system check 
  • Leveling jack and slide-out inspection 
  • A road test
  • 40+ images of the motorhome 

Whether buying a motorhome for vacations or as a permanent residence, getting a pre-purchase inspection lets you know what condition your home away from home is in. 

Commercial 

Aimed at any commercial vehicle, Lemon Squad wants to make sure your business makes a quality purchase. Commercial vehicle inspections include: 

  • A comprehensive mechanical assessment of complete drive-train 
  • Evaluation of the steering, suspension, brakes, and fluid levels 
  • Examination for previous accidents or flood damage 
  • Inspection of all commercial components for condition and function 
  • Road test (performed by the seller or representative with the inspector as a passenger) 
  • 25+ images of the commercial vehicle 

Commercial vehicles play a vital role in many businesses. An inspection can prevent a company from making a regrettable purchase when safety or functionality is at risk because of a Lemon. 

What Add-ons does Lemon Squad Offer? 

Lemon Squad offers three different add ons, allowing you to decide how in-depth you want your inspection experience. With these additional add-ons, you are able to customize your inspection so that you are able to get any and all information in the best format for you. 

Verbal Vehicle Assessment 

A professional staff member will provide an in depth explanation of the details found within your inspection. For an additional fee, you have the option to receive this information verbally, over the phone, to gain a deeper understanding of your inspection. 

Carfax Vehicle History Report 

With the inclusion of the Carfax report, you have access to your vehicle’s history. This history contains any information about previous accidents, open recalls, previous owners, service history and more. If you’re interested in finding out more about the past quality of your vehicle’s care, this add-on is for you!

Market Value Assessment

Based on a complete assessment of the vehicle, a fair market value will be determined based on the date of your inspection. The fair market value of the vehicle is determined based on the mileage, operation, condition of the internal and external components and any customization of the car. A market value assessment provides you, as the buyer, more negotiation power during the sale.  

Should you get a Mobile Pre-Purchase Auto Inspection?

A pre-purchase inspection is always a smart move when buying a used vehicle. Even if the deal seems as transparent as can be, an additional set of eyes on the car can reveal something that had previously gone unacknowledged. A pre-purchase inspection could be the difference between finding the vehicle of your dreams and a nightmare waiting to happen. 

So get started today with Lemon Squad’s mobile pre-purchase inspections and avoid buying a lemon!

Lemon Of The Week

After a competitive poll, the winning lemon of the week is vehicle number 2A 2003 Ford E450

Each week, Lemon Squad takes a poll from our Instagram followers. We provide images of two vehicles that have previously been inspected by Lemon Squad, and a brief summary of some of the vehicle’s imperfections. Our followers are then able to vote on which vehicle they think is a bigger “lemon”. After each poll, we combine the results to find the Lemon of the Week. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook  to get involved in the next round of voting and see what else is new with Lemon Squad!

Girl in a jacket

Let’s take some time to dive a bit deeper into the inspection report and what really makes this vehicle a lemon. We  want to stress the importance of having a pre–purchase inspection when buying a used car. This 2003 Ford E450 is an excellent example of “there’s more than meets the eye” (in the worst way). 

One of the biggest red flags for this Ford was that the Lemon Squad inspector could not even test drive the car; it would not run or drive and lacked power in many components. It is standard for Lemon Squad Inspectors to test drive every vehicle as it provides invaluable insight on the condition and performance of a car. 

Even after continuous attempts at jumping the battery, the vehicle could not maintain power, making it clear that it required a battery replacement. The backup camera on the vehicle did have power but still read “no signal.”

The vehicle’s exterior was plagued with scratches and dents that were even noticeable under the advertising wrap that encompassed the whole van. The advertising wrap made it nearly impossible to inspect the condition of the actual paint of the vehicle. Additionally, the vehicle’s underside showed significant signs of rot and rust on the frame, which would require metal work to be repaired. The rear shocks also sported rust and other signs of extreme age, demanding replacement as soon as possible. 

Compared to the exterior, the vehicle’s high mileage of 155,717 miles made the interior appear in better condition. General wear and tear on the seats and carpets showed that the state of the interior is very much in line with the vehicle’s age and mileage.

Overall, the vehicle’s exterior condition, the necessary repairs, and required metalwork make this 2003 Ford a Lemon. The issue with this vehicle is in the extensive and considerable nature of the needed repairs. All of these necessary repairs further makes the case to get a pre-purchase inspection before buying a car.

Lemon Squad Has You Covered

Even if you are out of state from the vehicle you intend to purchase, it is essential to have someone outside the seller view the car. Having a knowledgeable, uninvolved third party complete an inspection on the external and internal condition of a vehicle makes a sale much more transparent for the buyer. 

Lemon Squad provides car buyers with qualified inspectors within all zip codes of the United States, making it easy for any buyer to make an informed decision when it comes to used vehicle purchasing. Each inspection includes 100+ images of the vehicle and an in-depth inspection report that describes all of the systems mentioned above. Lemon Squad is equipt to inspect standard cars, classic cars, exotic cars, commercial vehicles, motorcycles, and RVs. 

As a buyer, you now have the tools to avoid the hassle of buying used cars, site unseen. Don’t buy a lemon – book a mobile pre-purchase inspection with Lemon Squad! 

Lemon Squad does RV Inspections!

Amid these uncertain times, many people are searching for activities they can control. For some, this means buying an RV and going on a COVID-friendly adventure around the country. With all of the anxiety around traveling and flying in particular, driving is the one way where you can have full autonomy over your trip. You can choose where you go and when you want to go there, all from the comfort of your home on wheels. So what are you waiting for? Pack up your life and go on an adventure!

If you have decided the RV life is for you, but you do not want the price tag of a brand-new vehicle, do not worry! There are plenty of used RVs in great shape and will be fully equipped to handle whatever adventure your heart desires. That being said, buying an RV is an investment, and the decision should not be taken lightly. This is where Lemon Squad comes in! Our RV inspections are the most comprehensive service we offer, so you can feel confident about making a purchase decision. Right now is a great time to buy an RV and an even better time to use Lemon Squad! Our skilled inspectors are taking all of the necessary precautions to keep both customers and themselves safe during this “new normal” while still providing high-quality work to help you make an informed purchase decision.

So what is involved in a pre-purchase RV inspection, and why do you need one? There are many different factors that contribute to the detailed report, and this information is necessary when you are deciding on buying an RV. It is vital to do research when buying a used RV, or any used car for that matter, which is why you should not buy the first one you see or like. Even if you have found an RV you think will serve all of your needs and looks to be in good condition, you should not purchase it without having a pre-purchase inspection conducted first. Our inspectors will tell you if there are any internal or external issues you may not have noticed or been made aware of by the dealership. The inspection report will give you a good idea of how much work and money you will have to put into the RV after you buy it, which can influence your decision to purchase if you were not planning on having to shell out more cash after you purchased it. Additionally, the inspection will tell you if you are getting a good deal on the RV or if you may be able to pay the same amount of money for an RV that is in better condition than the one you are looking at. It is also smart to use a third-party inspector to get the most accurate and unbiased information, which is why Lemon Squad is the best option! We are committed to helping our customers avoid buying a lemon (a car with significant issues that may impact its safety or driveability). We do so by being completely transparent. You should only conduct a pre-purchase inspection if you are serious about a vehicle because it is still an expense you do not want to incur for no reason. Getting the vehicle inspected is guaranteed to save you a lot of money in the long run, which is why using Lemon Squad is the right decision for high-quality reports and customer service.

When you are getting the RV inspected by Lemon Squad, you can expect a comprehensive report on the vehicle’s interior and exterior. The report includes a thorough mechanical inspection of the complete drive-train, an inspection of all of the appliances the RVs possess, a road test, 40 photos of the vehicle, and much more. All of the lights, sensors, and systems will be tested, and the inspectors will be able to determine if there were past issues the dealership may not have mentioned. If you have any specific areas of concern, our inspectors will be sure to address these thoroughly and report back any findings. If you would like to view a sample report of an RV inspection to get a visual sense of what you will be receiving, click here.

At Lemon Squad, we pride ourselves on transparency and efficiency, which is why you will have the report back to you in around 24-48 hours. You will not have to wait around any longer than necessary when you are trying to decide on a vehicle, and we can ensure you are getting a high-quality report that is easy to understand. So what are you waiting for? Start your RV adventure today when you book a pre-purchase inspection with Lemon Squad or call us at 888-231-7965.

But wait, our services do not stop there! Lemon Squad has recently been acquired by Wrench, a full-service mobile auto repair company with a team of ASE-certified technicians all around the country. If you decide to go through with the purchase of an RV after receiving the Lemon Squad inspection, you want to make sure that you get any issues sorted out before you hit the road. Some of our mechanics have experience with RV repairs and would be happy to help you get your vehicle running like new. Head over to the Wrench website to see if the Wrench mechanics in your area can help you out. If you have any questions about getting your RV (or any car) serviced, contact our customer service team at hello@wrench.com or at 844-997-3624. We look forward to welcoming you into the Lemon Squad and Wrench family down the road!

Ultimate Checklist for Pre-Purchase Auto Inspections

Buying a used car can be stressful, and if your chosen vehicle has not had a comprehensive inspection it can easily become a nightmare. A few simple questions, a sharp eye, and a trusted professional inspector can make all the difference. Prior to an in-depth inspection, it’s wise to ask the seller a few introductory questions about vehicle maintenance and repair history. Information regarding known problems or previous accidents should be disclosed at this time, including the reason for selling the vehicle. Here is a list of the most essential things that should be checked during a pre-purchase car inspection.

Inspect the Exterior

The paint should be checked for chips, flaking, or discoloration, and it should match on all of the panels. All body gaps should have the correct alignment. The hood as well as the trunk or hatch door should fit flush and open easily. Once done with the body, the glass and mirrors need to be inspected for cracks, scratches, chips, and functionality. See to it that the exterior lights function and are also free from cracks and chips.

Look Under the Hood

There shouldn’t be any leaks or loose and hanging parts, and the muffler, frame, and wheels shouldn’t have excessive rust. The tire treads should be worn evenly and the tire walls should be free of dry rot or cracks. All rubber bushings and gaskets should be free from rot and cracks as well. Radiator hoses should be soft and pliable, and the fan blades undamaged. Battery terminals must be free of any corrosion and residue with functioning clamps. Finally, all fluids need to have been kept full, and the dipsticks should not be discolored.

Check the Interior

While it may not seem very important, the interior should pass the same quality standards as the exterior and undercarriage. All power windows, seats, and mirrors should function smoothly, and all accompanying buttons and switches should be in working order. The key should be placed in the ignition and turned to the accessories function, then the radio should be turned on to check speaker sound quality. With the accessory function still on, all interior lights, windshield wipers, and signal and emergency flashers need to be tested. The heat and air conditioning should be tested, and the blower motor needs to be working at all levels. Make certain all seat belts are in good working order without any fraying or rips. The carpet and seats should be free from any visible water damage. If there is a sunroof, the seals and roof should be inspected for water damage or signs of leaking.

Take a Test Drive

The final part of a pre-purchase car inspection is the test drive. The vehicle should start easily and idle smoothly with no illuminated warning lights. There should not be any knocking or rattling, acceleration should be even, and the brakes should stop the car quietly, without excess vibration. The vehicle should handle well at all speeds up to 60 MPH and there should be no deterioration of performance.

To avoid buying a poorly maintained car, get a used car inspection from Lemon Squad. Our technicians can check the vehicle for a variety of issues. To schedule an appointment with one of our technicians, give us a call at 888-231-7965.

Why You Should Get an Inspection on a Used Luxury Vehicle

Having a certified and knowledgeable car inspection technician inspect a used car before committing to a purchase is the most important thing a prospective car buyer can do. Getting an inspection is especially important when considering a luxury car purchase, as some repairs and routine maintenance on high-end vehicles can be expensive. Luxury and high-end vehicles usually possess exceptionally advanced and complex mechanical and computer-controlled components, so it would be foolish not to have a professional evaluation on the overall condition of such a vehicle. Here are a few of the top reasons to get a used luxury vehicle inspected.

Avoid Getting Stuck with a Lemon

The main reason to get a used luxury car inspected is to make sure the car runs as advertised. Self-inspection of a luxury car or even a long and thorough test drive can in many cases fail to reveal serious underlying mechanical problems. A car inspection technician can quickly identify serious problems with a used vehicle that could be bad enough to dissuade you from making a purchase.

Gain Peace of Mind

Buying a luxury automobile with no inspection could leave you feeling unsettled and uncertain as to whether or not you made a sound purchase decision. Buyer’s remorse is particularly common when it involves used cars, especially if you have no idea about what the true mechanical state of such a car actually is.

Know What You’re Buying

Inspecting a used luxury car can help you understand exactly what you’re buying. An inspection can give you a detailed breakdown on the car in its entirety. With an inspection, you can determine the state of the brakes, clutch, transmission, and other vital components of a car that are most prone to wear and tear.

Find Out When Servicing Is Due

Routine maintenance and required servicing on a used luxury automobile can be extremely expensive, so much so that it could influence your decision to purchase the automobile. Through a certified used car inspection, you can find out when the automobile’s next round of servicing is due, what such servicing will cost, as well as what sort of servicing has been done on the car prior.

Leverage Your Negotiating Power

Once a documented inspection on a used car has been completed, you can use the information to help you negotiate a lower price on the car you’re considering purchasing. For example, if the car’s brakes and exhaust system are due for replacement or repair in the next 1,000 miles, research the price of such repairs and give that as a reason to make a lower offer on the car.

A used luxury car may be a good deal, but to make sure its maintenance doesn’t drain your bank account, get a pre-purchase car inspection from Lemon Squad. We have expert technicians who can check the car for a variety of issues. Give us a call today at 888-231-7965 to schedule an appointment with one of our representatives.