Used Van

Used Van Checklist

We understand that customers may be hesitant about purchasing the right van or may be unsure about good qualities to find in a van.

Listed below are some common components to be on the lookout for when inspecting the van, no matter what year it is or the engine it holds.

Oil leaks: Hefty accumulation of oil on the ground/subframe/engine bay area should signal a red flag because it could indicate potential issues the van may have.

Fuel leak or smell: While the van is running, there should NEVER be a poignant smell of diesel or gas, as well as any signs of fluid leaks. Common leakages can be found in the fuel filter hoses or filter and injector leak line T.

Power steering fluid leaks: 2007-2018 models are known for power steering leaks at the fluid reservoir hoses and should be inspected properly.

Transmission leaks: These are not as common, but the areas where they could leak from are the transmission pan, transmission cooler line, connections on the transmission housing, and the electrical connector on the transmission. (There can be small amount of fluid in the connector, but if removed, the fluid should not pour out.)

An adequate test drive: Remain alert and vigilant for alarming signs such as noises, vibrations, or harsh gear shifts. Noises can range from grinding heard in the cargo area to loud air “whooshing” under the acceleration. Vibration in the steering and in the seat base can indicate a tire issue, but it can be used to bargain the asking price. Harsh shifting should be a instant red flag.

Service records: Always ask to see previous service records and repairs. Whether it’s a RV, work van, stealth camper, or monster off-roader, these vans can be nightmares if not taken care of properly.

Lights on the dash: Obviously no lights should be on the dash, but if you happen to get into the van and there’s a check engine light or DEF light, always inquire about those. If someone answers, “oh that’s nothing,” walk away.

Rust and water leaks: Unfortunately Sprinters have been known to have rust in a lot of area’s. If able to you should check under the van for excessive rust on the body. Rust around the edge of the windshield indicates possible water leak from a bad windshield install. Stains on the headliner are indictors of a roof leak.

Common but important items that you can bring with you to further understand the overall picture of your potential vehicle:

Tire Tread Depth Gauge: Digital is easy, and no skill is needed to interpret the findings.

Flashlight: Always smart to shed light on the engine and undercarriage.

Rag or paper towels: Check various fluids.

Pocket code reader: Can help identify hidden issues, but it won’t find everything.

Test light with digital read out: Helpful to diagnose various obstacles.

Reminder: This is solely a quick overview of some common auto component inquiries and helpful items to bring with you while on the search for the perfect van. Other questions or concerns that are not listed here or need more information on should be submitted through our Services tab under “Vehicle Purchase.”

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