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Buying a Used Motorcycle Checklist: Five Things To Look For

Mar 5, 2023 | Buyer Guides

So you just acquired your motorcycle license and want to shop for a bike. However, like most new riders, you have a limited budget and can’t afford a brand-new motorcycle. Don’t panic—you can get an excellent machine in the used motorcycle market. 

However, buying a used bike can be challenging, even for experienced riders. You should keep several things in mind to ensure you don’t buy a lemon. The experts at Canada Powersports, a leader in motorcycle financing in Canada, share a buying a used motorcycle checklist to help you get the perfect ride for your needs. 

Five Top Considerations When Purchasing a Used Motorcycle

A Realistic Budget

The key to finding an excellent bike in the used market includes being realistic with your budget. You have almost zero chance of getting a reliable motorcycle for $500. However, you could get a good unit with a budget of at least $1,500.

Generally, the older the bike, the cheaper it will be unless you want a vintage. If you opt for a vintage bike, ensure the manufacturer still produces its parts. Manufacturers no longer support some old bike models. 

After a motorcycle purchase, you’ll also need money for replacing worn parts, registration, insurance, and other unforeseen expenses. 

Bike’s Overall Appearance

A critical item in buying a used motorcycle checklist involves checking the bike’s overall appearance. You can easily differentiate between a motorcycle that has received a quick cleaning before a sale and one that receives proper maintenance from a passionate owner. 

Take the time to inspect the bike for signs of damage, like a leaking fuel tank or fork seals. While at it, ask the following questions to help you make a decision:

  • Why are you selling the motorcycle?
  • Does the bike have any modifications?
  • Does it have any mechanical issues?
  • How have you used the bike?
  • Have you ever crashed it?
  • When and where did you last service the bike?

The Bike’s Electricals

Inspect the bike’s headlights to ensure they work properly. Run through every switch, including the horn, blinkers, and hazard lights, to confirm they’re in excellent condition. 

Next, press the rear brake pedal and pull the front brake lever to ensure the brake lights work correctly. Don’t forget to check if every gauge functions properly. 

The Bike’s Title or Registration

You must not skip this next critical step: verify that the motorcycle’s license plate number and VIN match the one on the title. You’ll often find the VIN number on the frame’s steering head. All the numbers should be visible with no signs of tampering. 

Also, confirm no lien holder shows on the title and avoid buying the bike if the seller has no title. 

Safety Check

After making your purchase, take the bike to a qualified motorcycle mechanic for a thorough inspection. You should always prioritize your bike’s safety. 

Get Motorcycle Financing 

This buying a used motorcycle checklist will help you find the perfect machine in the used motorcycle market. If you don’t have enough money for the purchase, Canada Powersports Financing can help. Contact us at (343) 312-6482 to get started.

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