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Beware - a story about a truck on CL

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Old 05-30-2014, 06:38 PM
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Beware - a story about a truck on CL

Hopefully this helps someone else looking at an older truck. Sorry it's a little long winded but I'll chalk it up to another bad experience of looking at a truck from CL.

I saw this truck I liked for sale on CL and in the 4 months or more I've been looking it appeared to be one of the nicer ones I've seen. It was however located and hour and a half away. I txt the guy and talked to him back and forth for probably a week wanting to know the normal things and asking questions. He said everything works and he's had no problems w/ it and just isn't driving it anymore so he wants to sell it.

Then at one point towards the last day or so before I was going to look at it I asked if he'd ever changed any of the fluids. He said no but I don't know what the previous owner did. I've only had it for about 20k miles. I said have you checked the tranny fluid and didn't respond until the next day saying he has never changed it (b/c he "never had a problem w/ it) but didn't know if someone else changed before him. That scared me a little but here's where it gets interesting.

I drive down to look at it w/ my buddy, and the truck does look pretty good. Some rust but not a lot and no big dents and very few scratches. Wheels look good, tires are good etc. Truck drove good, felt good, ran good, shifted good etc. I had already looked under the hood and no leaks anywhere or noise. I was thinking I'm going to buy this for sure. Then we went for a drive and when we got back I get out and the guy w/ me goes "is that fluid on the ground'' where we had pulled into the driveway and hit the bump. He dipped his finger in it and said "is that transmission fluid?"

I then asked the guy, does the tranny leak? He said I don't know. I then check the fluid and it's bright red like brand new and I go I thought you never changed it and he said I haven't and I haven't even looked at the tranny fluid since winter but I haven't driven it much lately. I then crawl under the truck and it's wet ALL OVER leaking where it seals to the engine.

I will leave out all the other boring details but he didn't like my offer so I walked away but he technically didn't lie but here's what you have to watch out for.....He didn't change the fluid but he'd been adding it probably every time it got driven. He hadn't driven it much lately b/c it's leaking when he drives it. It also had the air bag light on which tells me it might have been wrecked at some point and the airbag might not work. The part where I started realizing what was going on is when I asked if he had any fluid to top it off and he comes right out of the garage w/ a brand new bottle of fluid and the long funnel needed to add it. If it hadn't been leaking why would he already have that ready? Oh well, it was not the truck for me. Too much labor and $ needed to get it right.

I'll post a pic tomm morning of what the underside looked like and you all tell me if you think he powerwashed it at some point to blow off all the dried up oil and also what the real problem was w/ the leak...

Last edited by choate; 05-30-2014 at 07:32 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 05-30-2014, 08:50 PM
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I'll tell you what was really wrong with it right now... transmission pump seal was blown. To change it, the transmission has to come out... no big deal if you do it yourself, but at least a few hundred $ to have a shop do it.

Nothing strange to me... people try to pull stuff like that all the time. But, there are also honest people out there too, so it ain't all bad. Just have to make sure you look all over and around before you buy, which you did so kudos to you.

As for CL itself... I ain't ever found it to be better or worse than any other place.
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Old 05-31-2014, 12:47 AM
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This story reminds me of my new, old truck. I bought it without knowing all the problems. Now, it likely needs a new tranny, power steering pump and the steering box frame and cross member welded.

I own it and love the truck... once all the mechanical is done it will be the truck I've wanted for years. Its a 24year old rig... there's gonna be issues.
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Old 05-31-2014, 01:39 PM
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Here is what it looked like underneath. It's upside down and the black box is me trying to figure out how to turn on the flash on my camera phone

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