Most individuals believe that they can acquire a used motorcycle more easily and at a lower price than getting a brand new one. Choosing the right used motorcycle is usually daunting as there are many things you need to consider before getting a suitable deal. Before walking into vendor’s shops or checking online for used motorcycles, there are a lot of details you’ll need to consider to prevent mistakes when buying your bike.

This article provides detailed information on what to look for when buying a used motorcycle physically or online.

What to look for When Buying Used Motorcycle

Red Flags When Buying a Used Motorcycle

When purchasing your used motorcycle, you shouldn’t let the excitement of owning carry you away and forget to check for any red flags on the bike. It’ll be essential to check the bicycle carefully to notice any red flag that might make it unsuitable for purchasing. The following are the common and crucial red flags when buying a used motorcycle.

Extreme or very low price

Before walking into any vendor to purchase a used bike, it’ll be good to check the current market values. An overpriced vendor bike won’t be necessary, but you can negotiate for a lower price for the bike. However, if you find the bike’s price is way below the market price, it usually raises a red flag, as it might have some major issues like mechanical complications.

Lack of motorcycle history report

When purchasing a second-hand bike, it’ll be essential to check its history as most companies such as InstaVIN, cycleVIN specialize in providing the record. If the motorcycle lacks the history report, it raises a red flag. These reports are necessary to show the bike’s VIN decoding, odometer reading, multi-state searches, and the manufacturer recall history or specifications.

Wearing of the tires

Tires are an essential part you should consider when checking used bikes. Having a bike with tires that have worn out won’t be appropriate to purchase, as this illustrates the longer usage duration or long-distances coverage. However, new tires should also raise a red flag; despite reducing the cost of purchasing new tires, it’s a telltale sign that the owner has used the bike for long or had rough rides leading to the wearing of the tires.

Any discolorations or foreign fluids in the oil

For a good motorcycle, the oil should be dark while using, but having some foreign fluids and discolorations should tell something is wrong. These features may signify a leakage or poor maintenance for the bike; thus, this may lead to more mechanical issues. Additionally, check the other fluids like brake fluids; dark brake fluid is a vital sign of poor maintenance.

Lack of appropriate paperwork of the motorcycle

The paperwork, which includes a clear bike title, is the key evidence of ownership and is essential for transferring the ownership. However, if the bike lacks the paperwork or the titles appear forged, it raises some red flags, and it’ll be appropriate to walk away from the transaction. The reason being you can identify the legit owner of the motorcycle.

What Documents Do I Need When Buying a Used Motorcycle

While purchasing a second-hand two-wheeler, certain documents are essential to show the proper ownership and that you won’t get into the wrong side of the law. These documents are also essential to ensure smooth purchasing of the motorbike. Let’s look at these essential documents you should check when buying a used motorcycle.

Valid Insurance certificate

On all roads in the United States, a valid insurance certificate is a necessity for you to ride your bike. It’ll be crucial to get valid insurance from the seller, as it helps cover some losses in case of an accident or natural disaster, depending on the terms. Once you have the certificate and finalize the purchase, contact the insurance provider to transfer the ownership.

Registration card or tittle

It’s a vital paperwork that shows legit proof of ownership for the two-wheeler. The original cards show that the person selling the bike is the legit owner, and it’s not an off-market one or stolen. The card should have correct information on the owner’s name, engine, chassis number, and other specifications. After purchasing the bike successfully, you can endorse this card for transferring the ownership.

Pollution under control certificate

When purchasing a used motorcycle, it’s one of the important certificates. The PUC certificates indicate that the level of pollution from the bike is within the standards. The certificates hold the license plate number, certificate serial number, test date, and expiry date of the current certificate.

Road tax certificate

If you don’t want any issues with the authorities, it’ll be essential to check the road tax certificate, payable monthly or yearly. This certificate is essential to establish that the two-wheeler has got no unpaid tax dues. It’s a document you’ll need to transfer ownership of the bike after purchasing.

Transfer deed

After purchasing the bike, it’ll be appropriate to get a transfer deed that the owner sells. It’s an important paperwork that shows the sale and transfer of the motorcycle’s ownership. This document should contain all basic information of the buyer and seller, the chassis, engine, and plate number of the two-wheeler.

Buying Used Motorcycle Online

When looking to avoid the hustle of moving into the roads across the city to buy your used bike, it’ll be good to consider buying it online. Buying through various online vendors or platforms provides the easiest and cheapest of acquiring a second-hand motorcycle. However, the following are what to look for when buying a used motorcycle online to avoid making mistakes when choosing one.

Step 1. Check through various websites

Check through the different websites online that deal with used two-wheelers. Preferably, select a dealer or vendor who has a physical store and an online platform. It’s the best choice technique to check the legitimacy of any website or platform you want to purchase your bike or get the best deals from. Before choosing one website, ensure you have explored all the available options.

Step 2. Go through the bike’s specification

After identifying the appropriate website, check for the price tags and specifications of the available motorbikes suiting your preferences. Check for the price and compare with the other website to determine the possible low and legit motorbike you can purchase. When inspecting the features, ensure to check for the mileages, the models, certifications, or paperwork.

Step 3. Check this dealer’s testimonials and reputations

Before paying for the motorbike of your choice, it’ll be essential to ensure you’re dealing with the right vendor by checking the testimonial from prior customers. If possible, you can call customer care through the number present on their website and call them to understand more about their services. But even a better way is checking out a company like Consumer Reports that does a better job of shifting through unreliable reviews.

Step 4. Check for the physical locations of the bike

While purchasing a second-hand bike online, it’ll be proper to check if you can physically access it. You can make the trip to the physical location, check for the bike’s conditions, and even have a test ride. Experts advise that if you’re new to motorcycling, it’s better to hire an experienced bike owner or experienced friend to guide you through the process of test checking the bike.

Step 5. Have the payments and get the legit paperwork of the bike

After you’re satisfied with the bike and the vendor, you can pay for the bike. The online vendor will then give you the purchase receipt and all the other necessary certificates and documents of the bike. This transfer document shows that you have a legit right to own the to-wheeler. Alternatively, it helps prevent falling into the arms of scammers online or getting a motorcycle that doesn’t have a legit owner.

What Is Decent Mileage For A Used Motorcycle?

When purchasing a used motorcycle, the mileage is an important consideration, as it determines the distance the bike has covered. What is high mileage for a motorcycle? Well…when checking the mileage for the used bikes, the decent one may differ due to the model and type of motorbike you want to purchase. However, experts consider bikes with mileage above 40,000 miles as high-mileage bikes, but with good maintenance and good historical records, they’re worth purchasing. Importantly when buying the used motorcycle, the appropriate mileage range for smaller bikes is between 20,000 to 30,000 miles on the higher side. Whereas, for the large bikes, the 50,000-mile point is the highest mileage level.

What Is The Best Month To Buy A Used Motorcycle?

The most appropriate time you should consider purchasing a used motorcycle in the United States is between November and February. It’s usually very cold during these months, thus fewer people are riding their motorbikes out. With the less riding of the motorcycle for either official or leisure uses, most owners would be desperate to sell them off and wait for favorable weather to purchase new ones. Therefore, you can get the best deal on a used motorcycle at a reasonable or decent price during this duration.

What Is The Best Second-Hand Motorcycle To Buy?

There are many options for used motorcycles; you can choose from multiple vendors, both online and physical. However, you must be very careful to land the best bike that doesn’t have any issues and will provide a perfect addition to your home. While buying these bikes, it’ll be essential to consider the model, price, functionality, legit paperwork, and any further maintenance you may need.

 The following are the best second-hand motorcycles you should consider, as they offer the best deals.

  • All Yamaha xs650 (Ok, we are a little biased, but can you blame us 🙂 )
  • 2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R
  • 1998 Honda VFR800
  • 2004 Suzuki Sv650S
  • 2002 Ducati Monster 620ie
  • 2002 Yamaha YZF -R1
  • 1996 Suzuki GSX-R750
  • 1994 Honda CBR600F2

Bottom line

Buying a second-hand motorcycle can be one of the worst ordeals, as there are various things you’ll have to consider to get the best deals. Before you start your search and process of getting the bike, it’s essential to research and understand what to look for when buying a used motorcycle, either physically or online. This guide provides the necessary information to ensure you get appropriate second-hand motorbikes suiting your budget and needs.

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