Advice For Buying A Used Pickup Truck

Reply

  #1  
Old 12-05-15, 06:08 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 486
Advice For Buying A Used Pickup Truck

I would like to buy a used pickup truck for local use. It will just be used for bringing materials home from the lumber yard, hauling trash to the dump, etc. It will not be my primary vehicle. I know that I can rent a truck or pay to have deliveries and dump runs but I would like the convenience of having my own truck. What brands and price range? Nothing fancy....don't need 4 WD or AC....just cheap transport.
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 12-05-15, 06:22 AM
XSleeper's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 20,534
Nothing fancy = Ford. You will pay thousands more for a GM product. I think the price of used trucks will probably blow you away. They are so expensive. So I would suggest you figure out how much you want to spend and try to get the most truck for your money. Personally, I would avoid short boxes. Trucks have different length boxes, you know. Ford's short box is 5'5. standard box is 6'5. A full sized box is 8'. So lets say you needed to regularly hall large crates and needed/wanted the tailgate up. You might want a full sized box. Mine is standard, which is fine. A 12' ladder can sit in back without wanting to flip out. You also need to decide what kind of engine and whether you want auto or manual transmission. Gas mileage is another factor. Mine is a V6 and gets 18/19 MPG on the highway. That's probably saved me thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle, but I put on a lot of miles. Fleet vehicles are often no nonsense plain jane white work trucks, and you can often get a decent low cost ride by looking for them.
 
  #3  
Old 12-05-15, 06:24 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
Unless you need to haul a lot of weight or longer products, a small truck on the S-10 level would probably suffice. Better fuel mileage. If you can find a truck that has an inoperative AC, then that would give you a bit of leverage on the price, since you say you don't need it. A full size PU will cost more to operate and will take up more space (if that were a worry). As far as brands, it would be a toss up, IMO. Looking through the Auto or Truck Trader would give you a good indication of pricing. Checking with a trusted mechanic could enlighten you as to repair costs and frequencies they may have observed.
 
  #4  
Old 12-05-15, 06:49 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,837
.... and do a lot of shopping/looking for a truck. Here locally if you cross the mountain truck prices raise drastically - not sure why.

Buying a used truck isn't a lot different from buying a used car. Figure out how much you are willing to spend and then look for the best deal. Trucks often have more dents/scratches than used cars but don't get hung up on the cosmetic stuff, the main thing is to find one that is mechanically sound!
 
  #5  
Old 12-05-15, 07:02 AM
the_tow_guy's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SW Fla USA
Posts: 11,567
I'm with Larry. S-10 or Ranger or the smaller size Toy pickups (which would be my choice). I'm on a casual lookout for a small p/u myself and those are my targets.
 
  #6  
Old 12-05-15, 07:09 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
I had thought about getting a smaller run around truck, but heck I get 16.3 mpg in a Dodge Ram Dually 4wd with a Cummins 5.9, so there's not that much difference. Plus I like looking down on cars At 460,000 miles, I'll just run it till it rolls over and dies.
 
  #7  
Old 12-05-15, 08:20 AM
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wet side of Washington state.
Posts: 18,399
Interesting thread.

Back when I wanted a pick-up I thought all I needed was a cheap used one. However, once I started looking I found that there are NO cheap used trucks except ones that were completely shot. Anything with some life left in it was going for what I considered to be outrageous prices. Ten-year old models selling for about 75% of the cost of a new one.

(I'll add that I was specifically looking for a smaller truck, most likely an import.)

After a few months of this I finally decided to bite the bullet and buy a new one. After all, if I had to pay almost new price I figured I should be the one to put the majority of the miles on it. I kept that truck for about ten years and there are many stories that go with it but I'll spare you.

But then it hit me. As much as I thought I needed a truck, for the most part it never hauled much more than air. Sure, it was nice to be able to go on a moment's notice to pick up bulky or large items but that just didn't happen more than a few times a year, even with all my projects at the time. I got rid of that vehicle about 25 years ago and I can count on one hand the times that I have really needed a truck since then. The last few years I owned it I would often wait until half the year (or more) was gone before even licensing it and then might make two or three trips before the license expired.

Not having a truck has saved me from dragging home countless pieces of junk I see on Craig's list and for that I am sure my neighbors are forever grateful. I sometimes think about getting another truck but all I have to do is remember the last one and that I am trying to get rid of junk, not accumulate more, and the thought passes. It is far, far, far cheaper for me to just rent a truck when I really need one.
 
  #8  
Old 12-05-15, 09:17 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,837
I guess it depends on the person as at least 50% of the miles I put on my truck involve something being in the back .... but then my pick up only gets 11-12 mpg so if I'm just driving somewhere I'm apt to take me jeep as it gets a lot better mileage A utility trailer is often a good substitute for occasionally hauling stuff.
 
  #9  
Old 12-05-15, 12:31 PM
the_tow_guy's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: SW Fla USA
Posts: 11,567
I'vbe been able to get by locally with borrowing my tow buddies util trailer and dragging it behind wrecker. Now with daughter in her first house across state (180 miles) I sort of need something I can drive over there occasionally for hauling stuff. Don't really want to have to make that round trip @ 8 mpg.

Furd makes a good point about used trucks. I see that, too. People tend to keep them until they're junk or sell them at inflated prices if they have life in them. I actually had a nice little Ranger 5 speed last year that I bought on the spur of the moment while picking up a customer's other vehicle. Think I gave them $600 for it and all it really needed was some cleaning up. With 20/20 hindsight I would have kept it, but at the time daughter was not looking at houses. Plus my left knee ain't what it used to be for mashing a clutch. My tow buddy just took possession of about a 10 year old F150 V-6 via towing & storage lien sale that I can probably have for around $3k, but I keep thinking an F150 is way more truck then I really need for the limited use.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes