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Saturday, March 17, 2018
Article written by Peter J.H. Johnson

What You Should Know Before Buying A Used Hybrid

There was once a time when hybrids were restricted to the Hollywood crowd and college professors. However, over the last 6 years hybrids have become widely popular and can now be found in garages of everyday people. As the hybrid market continues to grow so too will the used hybrid market. What should you know about buying a used hybrid? Read on.

The basics Buying a used hybrid is like buying any other used car. Well, sort of. The biggest concern when buying a used hybrid is finding out the condition of the battery pack. These battery packs can easily cost in excess of $5000 to replace. To ease the concern of new buyers, manufacturers put an extended warranty on the battery pack, hybrid control module, battery control module and other related components. The warranty on these components is usually 8 years or 100,000 miles. You'll want to confirm that the warranty is transferable if it has not already expired. Just like a regular used car, itís not wise to buy a used vehicle that is from the first year of production for that particular model.

Where to buy a used hybrid Just like buying a regular used car, there are three typical channels where the average consumer will find a hybrid car. First you have certified pre-owned programs at new car dealerships. Secondly, there are used car lots that are not affiliated with a manufacturer; finally there are private sellers.

The best place to buy a hybrid is through a certified pre-owned program offered through a new car dealership. Toyota, GM, Honda, Ford and others have these programs. Although they typically cost more, vehicles from these CPO programs must undergo an extensive inspection in order to be sold through the dealership. Cars that fail these inspections end up on independent used car lots. CPO programs offer better warranties and often come with an exchange option if you're not happy with your purchase. Private sellers will offer the cheapest price but you have no recourse if something goes wrong.

Maintenance and repairs Beyond regular oil changes and maintenance, most repairs should be done at the dealership. These technicians are factory trained and certified to work on hybrids. Other garages won't have the equipment or experience to accurately diagnose and fix a mechanical problem on a hybrid. To avoid any hassles, make sure you live in the area of the dealership. Nobody likes taking a day off to get their car repaired. To achieve the best mileage, hybrids come equipped with unique low rolling resistance tires. As the second owner, you'll need to replace these tires at some point if they haven't already been replaced.

So is buying a used hybrid right for you? Well, thatís a question only you can answer. Overall, itíll likely cost more to buy than a typical used car but youíll save money on fuel. Get out your solar powered calculator but always remember you get what you paid for.
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