If you've decided that you want to join the local four-wheel-drive community and try your hand at some off-road trails, you need a vehicle that is equipped for the terrain. That means shopping for an off-road capable truck at a shop such as a Nissan dealership. If you've decided that you're going to invest in a truck that's already built, you'll need to be choosy about the one you buy. Knowing what to look for in used lifted trucks can help ensure that you get the truck that you really want instead of one that's destined to give you trouble.
When you go to look at a used lifted truck, the first thing you should do is a complete visual inspection. There are a few things that will tell you how well the truck has been cared for and how aggressive the owner was with it on the trails.
Look underneath the truck first. Even if the first glance appears clean, look closely at the frame rails. If there's any mud caked on the top of the rails or accumulated in the bracket holes on the frame, that's an indication that the truck has been run in muddy terrains. Mud can cake into the bearings and the universal joints, causing handling issues and potentially costly repairs.
Check the overall condition of the frame itself, too. Trucks taken out on the trails without proper preparation and aftercare are more likely to rust sooner because of moisture and material exposure on those trails. If there are signs of rust on the frame, consider the severity. Surface rust can be sanded off and eliminated with the right coatings, but rust that's eaten through the frame, or the mounting brackets, is an indicator that you'll want to pass on that truck.
When you pop the hood to look at the engine, don't stop there. Look at the underside of the hood as well. The insulation under the hood should be free of mud and debris, and it should be in good condition. If there's mud or other particulates in the hood insulation, that's a sign that the truck was not only used on the trails but not taken care of very well afterward.
Lifting a truck can significantly alter several of the mechanical components. If the person selling the truck lifted it without an understanding of these things, he or she may have overlooked some key components that could give you trouble down the road. Knowing which mechanical components to check can help you narrow things down.
The brakes are an important consideration. In most cases, when a truck owner lifts the vehicle, they also add larger-diameter tires and wheels. Unfortunately, the stock brake system is not equipped to stop tires larger than the ones that are stock on the vehicle. The larger the tires and wheels, the heavier they will be. When you increase the mass, you have to increase the size of the calipers and rotors for stopping power.
Another thing that is often overlooked when lifting a truck and increasing the size of the tires is the speedometer's readings. Remember that your speedometer is calibrated to read rotations of the tires, so when your tire size changes, those rotations change as well. If the truck's owner has mounted larger tires, ask if they have calibrated the speedometer to match. You can also test drive the vehicle with a second vehicle that's stock. Have the second vehicle lead at a set speed, and see what the truck's speedometer is reading. If it's not the same, the speedometer will need to be recalibrated to ensure that you know exactly how fast you are going on the road.Share
26 November 2018
After going to my first auto auction, I became very interested in how dealers select the cars they're going to put on their lots. I spent a lot of time talking with local dealers, auction regulars, and others in the industry to learn the behind-the-scenes secrets to picking out the perfect auction cars and getting them lot-ready. I created this site to help others understand what goes into the process in the hopes that it would help car buyers understand what they're looking at when they hit the car lot. I hope the information here helps you better prepare for buying your next car.