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bought a used car, breaks down 50 miles later

dusters16 dusters16
New User | Posts: 2 | Joined: 02/09
Posted: 02/21/09
01:37 PM

I bought a used car from a small dealer (not dealership). the guy has a dealer number but sells cars from his home, i believe, since thats where i bought mine from. I bought a used 1999 mitsubishi eclipse spyder gs. i had test driven it twice before purchace. the sale price was at $3,320.00. i bought it on a saturday and my auto insurance company wasnt open, so i couldnt get insurance for it yet. i had my dad drive it to his house and from there i had my fiance drive it back to our place. that totaled about 40 miles. i was able to get insurance that following tuesday, since monday was a holiday. on tuesday i had to go to the dmv. well on my way there, i noticed some smoke/steam coming out of the enigine compartment. the tempeture seemed fine, so i continued to the dmv and see what was going on. when i got there i checked under the hood and discovered that the coolant return hose was a little loose and had sprayed coolant forward onto the radiator. i thought thats why i had seen the smoke/steam coming out and after the dmv i decided to drive it to my parents house where my dad could help me with it.
btw the dmv is 9 miles from my house. my parents house is 5 miles from the dmv.
well on my way to my parents house, the car just died. all the electrical was on but the engine stopped cranking. luckily i was near my auto shop and was able to get it there safely. the auto shop wasnt able to get to it until the next day, wednesday, at which time i was told that the head gasket is blown and the repairs would be at least $1,000 to $2,000.
i personally had only driven the car about 15 miles.
after the purchase, it had been driven a total of 41 miles total to get to my house. so 15 + 41 = 56 miles and which time the car is now at the shop.
well i have been negotiating with the guy and he either wants to split the cost of the repairs or i can get my money back minus $500 ($2850). either way i will loose $500 and am not willing to loose that.
at the time of purchase, i asked if i could take it to my mechanic, but was rejected due to the fact that the car wasnt insured and it was farther than he would allow it to go without having insurance. he then said that he had it inspected recently and he did show me a reciept from his mechanic. the reciept did not indicate that there was anything majorly wrong with the car. so i took his word for it and bought it.
also, there wasnt any Buyer's Guide that said anything about a warrenty, nor did he specify the car was being sold as is.

my question is, can i get all of my money back? do i have to pay for repairs? technically it was 1 business day from point of purchase that this happened and with such low milage too, is there some sort of buyers remorse or lemon law or something?
the car was only driven by insured motorits at all times if that helps.
also if he doesnt want to give all the money back, do i have a convincing story to take him to samll claims court? or how about his "mechanic", can i take him to court?
is it possible that the seller knew about the head gasket but didnt report it? maybe showed an older inspection reciept?
the carfax comes clean with the vehicle being serviced on 11/2008 at a mitsubishi dealership.  

dusters16 dusters16
New User | Posts: 2 | Joined: 02/09
Posted: 02/23/09
10:17 AM

just bumping to the top  

Lt1Vette96 Lt1Vette96
New User | Posts: 7 | Joined: 07/09
Posted: 07/14/09
02:31 PM

In short he is being VERY fair and doesn't have to give you anything in return at all. The fact he is buying it back is very generous.

Buyer Beware is the law on used cars.

Also you probably blew the head gasket by driving it with it overheating. They don't just blow out very often on their own. Your temp gauge won't read high if you already lost most of the coolant due to a leaky hose. If you would have just stopped at the first sign of trouble and had the hose fixed you probably wouldn't need a head gasket.

ASE Certified technician 15 years.  

codecobalt codecobalt
New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 08/09
Posted: 08/03/09
05:54 PM

I believe it depends on the state you live in. Most have lemon laws, and it certainly sounds like a lemon. Sorry I can't be much help, but I do believe the other poster is completely wrong.

In massachusetts for example, any car that costs over $700, and has less than 125,000 miles on it is covered for at least 30 days or 1250 miles, from any defect that affects use or safety. Let me know the state and I will try to be of more help.

Generally the dealer is required to pay for the repairs or offer to buy the car back for the paid price, minus 15 cents for every mile driven. Be careful though, in some states once the dealer has offered to buy the car back, and you refuse, the dealer is no longer responsible for making any repairs. Stupid I know, but at least you are mostly protected other than time and some taxi money while you look for a new car.  

rvalverde rvalverde
New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 12/09
Posted: 12/09/09
12:24 PM

That's too bad man; I'd recommend getting an on-site vehicle inspection before purchasing any kind of used  vehicle just so you know what you're getting yourself into. There's inspection companies that will drive out to the dealer (this way they can't make up excuses about insurance) and have a registered inspector take a look at the car and send you a detailed report.

There's plenty of these companies out there...I used AiM Mobile Inspections and got my report fast and was very detailed. Definitely would recommend this for anyone buying a used car in the future...  

eureka eureka
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 12/09
Posted: 12/29/09
08:05 PM


New User | Posts: 5 | Joined: 01/10
Posted: 01/23/10
06:22 PM

I agree with LT1VETTE,the seller is being very generous and the head gasket was likely blown while you were driving it. The only recourse you may have is if he is truly a dealer??? there should have been a buyers guide. It is called a Federal buyers guide and if one was not presented you may have a case and he could possibly be fined.If he is only a back yard dealer,you have nothing and he seems honest by his generosity.  

megan1 megan1
New User | Posts: 1 | Joined: 05/12
Posted: 05/22/12
07:05 PM

i have a smiliar issue but i had my car for two weeks. im from indiana. the dealership sold me a warranty that was suppose to cover the whole engine. i called the warranty people and had an inspector sent out to check the issue which is the head gasket. they said they did not cover that but my dealership is saying it does. what should i do?  

henry.budd henry.budd
Enthusiast | Posts: 254 | Joined: 01/12
Posted: 07/06/12
12:07 AM

I would suggest you to sell this car because it was just 56 miles and I don't think you will be benefited from this car in future. It is better loosing $500 instead of investing more on this junk in repairing and maintenance. Next time whenever you will go for a used car be very careful to check the condition properly. Make sure that the engine should be in good condition...good luck  

mco65 mco65
New User | Posts: 6 | Joined: 05/12
Posted: 08/07/12
05:54 AM

Personally I think you should take the $500 hit and return car. I know $500 is a big deal but it beats the alternative.  Being that the dealer was nothing more than a private citizen, the deal you made for the purchase of the car is likely solid with little wiggle room. buying a car is such a PAIN regardless of where you purchase but using a reputable dealer will at least ensure things like this can be avoided.  

NikaWoren NikaWoren
New User | Posts: 36 | Joined: 09/12
Posted: 09/17/12
04:36 AM

Hi everyone.

Can please give me an advice. Not long time ago I gave a birth to the
second child in our family and now we are thinking of buying a family car.  My budget is a $25.000.
Now my dilemma, I don't know much about cars and have only every purchased VW. The problem is that VWs are really expensive and don't meet our needs. After doing quite a bit of research we have narrowed down our search to the following 3 vehicles:

2012 Honda CR-V 2.4L
2013 Ford Escape 2.0L EcoBoost
2012 Chevrolet Equinox 2.4L

What can you say about  these vehicles? I would appreciate any recommendations regarding the cars above and would value the input of owners with these cars already.

Also I've found the website and  it offers these cars at the price, which is lower than dealers' offers in  my state. Can I trust them though? Is there anybody who dealt with them?

Thanks for your time.  

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