If you’re thinking about buying a second-hand motorhome or campervan before the summer, you’re probably aware of the intricacies of doing your research properly and finding the right model or name to suit you. However, the history of the vehicle you’re looking at isn’t always so obvious and it’s difficult to know exactly what you’re buying. Here’s a quick guide to getting under the bonnet and checking out exactly what your new purchase has been up to.
One thing that’s hard to know if you’re not experienced is how worn the mechanics of your potential purchase are and how long they’ll last you. You can visibly check tyres and things like rust on the body, but you may not be so confident with establishing how long the drive train is going to last. Feel free to take a mechanic with you to any purchase you make – they can give you much better advice on the longevity of the parts.
You need to check the log book of any motorhome you buy, starting with the address – does it match the seller’s address? If you’re arranging a viewing at their house then it’s easy to check. Make sure that you get a check done on the motorhome insurance status, the tax history and, if you think the motorhome might have been leased, check that all the payments have been made. If you find a stolen vehicle on your hands then you could well have some trouble with the police – don’t take any risks and get the proper checks done.
Companies like the AA will offer a full package of checks and a mechanical inspection for usually around £150 which, if you’re thinking seriously of buying, is a very reasonable amount. Of course, you should never buy anything that’s unsound and be very wary of anything that is missing a log book or has a cloudy history – once you’ve bought it you can’t go back, so make sure you make the right decision first time around.