You should buy a car with rust

Attention, blender!This is how you recognize manipulated used

Some used car and classic car sellers camouflage, trick and deceive as much as possible in order to get a better price for the car. Only one thing can help: When buying a car, you have to become a detective in order to catch the perpetrator in the act. This is how you expose lies and deceit!

What is a blender?

Car salespeople want to get rid of their car quickly and at the best price - so it makes sense to spruce up the car a little before the bride's show. Engine washing and cleaned upholstery are okay, but when does camouflage and trickery start? "If the supplier wants to hide the poor condition of the vehicle, you have a blender in front of you," says Frank Wilke from Classic Analytics from Bochum.

In some cases, rust spots are concealed, new parts are attached - and thus the true condition is concealed. Anyone who buys something like this will be confronted with rust perforations, maintenance backlogs or engine damage by the next HU appointment at the latest - then a supposed bargain quickly turns into a money grave.

It is therefore important to clarify with the seller what exactly happened in the case of obviously freshly made cosmetic repairs. Scammers seldom go out of their way to repair it. If he gets lost in excuses, you should become suspicious and possibly not buy!

How do I find out in advance?

In order to expose a bad specimen, the first thing you need to know is what a good one looks like:

► “Deal with the type of car you are interested in,” advises Rolf Pfeifer from the Society for Technical Monitoring (GTÜ). When buying a used car, he also recommends taking an expert with you - he knows his job and also has the necessary objectivity.

► The relevant young timer clubs and interest groups (IG) are also recommended addresses for potential buyers to obtain detailed information, says Pfeiffer.

So where are the most popular blender construction sites? During the tour, systematically illuminate the following problem areas to reveal manipulation:

1. Painting

Nothing goes faster than walking with the spray can over a scratched part of the body or a plastered rust nest - but the botch quickly becomes noticeable in unclean transitions.

► "Get down on your knees and take a look at the body," advises Pfeiffer from GTÜ. This is the easiest way to discover fillings and lacquer plasters. Repainted areas or body parts also have a shade that often deviates in nuances because they have only been exposed to UV light for a relatively short period of time. Blender can also reveal paint residues on window panes, rubbers and other parts.

2. Spatula cavities

Basically, rust spots and dents are not a problem - with blenders, the spot is not cleanly derusted and painted. Instead, filler and varnish come on top.

► How to find out about cheating: A small permanent magnet (from the refrigerator) is held against the paint every 20 centimeters. Where it holds well, the sheet metal comes directly behind the paint - everything is okay. Of course, the magnet only provides approximate values, the decisive factor is an even result. If there are noticeable deviations, something is wrong.

3. Sheet metal parts

Badly executed sheet metal work is more difficult to spot. This is where manufacturer photos of a car help - so you know what it should actually look like.

► "Above all, pay attention to the gaps between body parts," advises Rolf Pfeiffer from GTÜ. Once again, it depends on the uniformity: If the standards deviate significantly at certain points, if something does not seem to fit or if a course is noticeably short or wide, there is either accident damage or poorly executed repair (e.g. due to corrosion).

Have you discovered such spots, confront the seller with them - how does he react? Does he deny or pretend not to know anything? Then you should become suspicious and in any case renegotiate so that the damage can be properly repaired.

4. Underworlds

Since important assemblies such as the engine, gearbox, drive shafts, steering, exhaust, fuel system and brakes as well as the entire floor pan are invisible under the car, only one thing helps: look underneath!

► "With youngtimers you should definitely look under the car," advises GTÜ man Pfeiffer. What looked very appetizing at first glance from above becomes the moment of truth when it comes to critical inspection underground - because hardly a seller bothered to make beauty treatments down here.

This applies to fuel and oil leaks, corroded lines, cracked sleeves, accident and rust damage, but above all the overall condition, which gives you an impression of what a past life the car had.

Was he ruthlessly forced over the curb and landed in the process? Did he stand in the cold and wet in summer and winter? All of this is reflected down here - through damage, rust and dirt.

5. Test drive

At the latest during the test drive, you will expose chassis damage: “To do this, you have to switch on your hearing: is it rattling somewhere?” Says Rolf Pfeiffer from GTÜ.

► If the car does not drive properly in a straight line, the lane may be warped. Uneven deceleration is an indication of worn, poorly adjusted or, in the worst case, defective brakes. Violent roaring from the bike in tight corners indicates bearing damage. You should also pay attention to the engine, the expert advises: “Does the engine ring? How high is it turning? Does the exhaust make noises? "

► Shift into all gears, but also try out unconventional shifts, for example from second to fourth or from first to third. If certain grips feel “choppy” or if double-declutching is required, a synchronizer ring may be damaged.

Carry out the same test for automatic vehicles (if possible). When downshifting, the engine brake must provide deceleration, otherwise there is a gearbox defect.

6. Tires

The condition of the tires, in particular, shows how carefully they have been prepared for sale. "To give old tires a new look, many salespeople paint tire gloss‘ on the flank, but you shouldn't be fooled by that, "says Frank Wilke from Classic Analytics.

► You should therefore check the DOT number: The first two digits of the four-digit number on the tire wall indicate the calendar week of production (for example '49' for the 49th week), in the following the year (for example '14' for 2014). Even on young timers that are rarely and carefully driven, tires should not be more than ten years old.

Caution: a worn profile under 1.6 millimeters is a "serious defect" that will not receive the HU badge. A new set of tires can easily cost 400 euros, exotic vehicles considerably more - renegotiating is therefore a must. Also make sure that all four tires are of the same type and manufacturer!

7. Interior

A shrewd salesperson swaps the covers of the driver and front passenger seats - because the driver's seat wears out the most in the life of a car.

► Make sure that your test object does not show signs of wear and tear on the passenger seat. "It also happens that worn leather seats are dyed in a very unprofessional way - it then flakes off after a few months," says Frank Wilke from Classic Analytics.

You can obtain further indications about the mileage and life of the vehicle, for example, from the degree of wear and tear on the pedal rubbers or the condition of buttons or the plastics on the dashboard.

also read

► “You should also lift floor mats and carpets and take a good look at the sheet metal underneath,” adds Rolf Pfeiffer from GTÜ. In the case of a blender, a dent in the underbody, filled with filler from the outside, would be clearly visible here - because no cheat seller bothered to bulge it out.

You can also use the opportunity to see whether there are any leaks on doors, sliding roofs or windows, because then condensation would collect in the footwell.

8. Documentation

A well-made blender also includes an imitation logbook or service booklet, depending on how high the profit is.

Bad counterfeits are very easy to spot: "If the entries are always made with the same ballpoint pen in the same font, that should make the buyer suspicious," says Thomas Schuster from KÜS.

However: if you maintain your car yourself, you cannot provide adequate workshop entries - you should again expect conclusive explanations from the seller. Then only a look at the context helps; In other words: workshop invoices and test certificates. "It is much more difficult to counterfeit it, I have never seen it before," says Frank Wilke.

Special case: speedometer

Admittedly: Nothing is as difficult to uncover as tachometer manipulation. However, the same applies here: Most crooks do not make too much effort, but leave it at turning back (manual speedometers) or digital manipulation. ►Ask yourself: does experience show that the mileage matches the age of the vehicle?Rolf Pfeiffer: "If a mid-range car has driven significantly less than 20,000 kilometers a year, something is wrong - then the seller has to provide a very good reason." Of course there is always a reason; Often there are imaginative stories about the widow of the factory director who only drove to the cemetery every two weeks in her deceased husband's company car - "but there can't be as many old ladies as they appear in these stories," says Thomas Schuster from KÜS mocking. So don't let a bear tie you up, no matter how beautiful the story sounds! The documentation (see above) and the overall degree of wear and tear of the vehicle provide further information. If you have not got out yet, you should take the next step in escalation: Call previous owners and workshops, whose data is in the (hopefully complete) documentation. If these uninvolved third parties confirm the seller's story, everything is okay.

9. Tricks

There are salespeople who are downright creative when it comes to manipulation. This includes letting the engine warm up, which starts poorly or does not start at all when it is cold due to defects. If it can be arranged, try to be at the meeting point 20 minutes before the agreed time.

Interesting too

If you then see the car standing around with the engine running, you can turn around again immediately, because that is clearly cheating.

It is also popular to distract the driver from suspicious noises during a test drive by having the seller speak loudly, turn on the radio or make phone calls continuously. Often, during the price negotiation, someone else calls who would like to take the car with them - either the whole conversation is a fake or it is an acquaintance of the seller.

“In the worst case, the car is parked inadvertently‘ so that it cannot be thoroughly inspected, let alone test driven, ”says Rolf Pfeiffer from GTÜ. There it is again: hands off!

10. Virtual blender

They fall under the definition of cyber crime: used cars and classic cars that are offered on Internet exchanges at unbeatable prices, but in reality do not exist or are at least not for sale at all. Of course, the great story is also included here as to why the car is in such good condition and still so cheap. There is always no time for a viewing, and the car is parked somewhere abroad, but it can be sent on request.

In this case, the ad is completely fake - the car does not exist, the criminals get the photos from another portal somewhere or snap a car of the type they are looking for on the side of the road. If you inquire now, you will receive Blender documents, i.e. excellent forged papers, invoices and similar "evidence", and in addition, the supposed seller builds up psychological pressure why the purchase has to be made as quickly as possible - other interested parties like to talk about it like that that the caller feels compelled to save a partial amount as a "reservation".

Mostly this is done via Western Union. However, this is not a bank, but a money messenger - payments can therefore not be revoked. If someone has withdrawn the money at the other end of the world, preferably Nigeria, it is irretrievably gone. And of course the car too.