(WXYZ) - Think you know how to buy a used car? It turns out many us make a few mistakes.
You find a sharp vehicle, take it for a test drive, and you then get the dealer to take a few hundred dollars off the price. If that’s all you did, you could be setting yourself up for financial disaster.
It happened to Britney Love. She bought a sharp 2005 ford pickup was a great deal at less than 12 grand.
"When you look at it, it looks fine," she says.
And the salesman promised Britney he'd take care of any issues, even though it was sold "as is," with no warranty.
"They told us if anything was wrong, bring it back, they'll take care of it," Britney says.
But just two days after buying it, she says, the engine started bucking the first time she ran it on the interstate.
"The whole engine was jolting the truck, it kind of felt like the transmission was slipping."
The diagnosis was even worse:
"So they got in there and did some looking around, and yeah, it's got a bad engine in it," according to Britney.
Not only that, she pulled its Carfax report and found it had been in a serious accident.
"That's when we found out all the severe damage in the Carfax."
After a member of the don’t waste your money team contacted the dealer, it promised to give Britney a break on another used car, but said it could not give her a full refund.
Experts say there's no legal ground for a refund with "as is" used cars. There's also a lesson here for all used car buyers:
--try to get some warranty, even a 1 week warranty.
--check the Carfax report for accidents before you buy, not after.
--test drive it at highway speeds.
--better yet, have a mechanic inspect it.
--and get any promises in writing, as Britney and her mom now know.
Copyright 2012 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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