Before looking for a used mobility scooter you should decide what type of scooter you are looking for. You need to consider your needs and lifestyle. Do you need it to be portable and fit in a car? Do you need plenty of storage for a trip down the shops? Or do you need it to have off-road capabilities? Do some research online to find out what features you want from a mobility scooter, if you’re unsure, speak to a specialist. Be aware, sellers from mobility scooter shops want you to purchase from them, so seek independent advice if you’re unsure. Feel free to get in touch with us at Mobility Services Direct, we’ll be happy to advise. Ultimately, you’ll have a price limit in mind, to ensure you get the best mobility scooter for your money follow these tips.
Buying secondhand from a Mobility Scooter Shop
Just like cars, people trade in their old mobility scooters for new models and these trade ins are sold on. The benefit of purchasing from a Mobility Scooter shop is the scooter should have been serviced and in some cases the shop will know the history of the vehicle. If they don’t, ask for the service history.
You should check that the scooter has been serviced, if not, you should insist on a full service before purchase. Again, like cars, the dealer will most probably offer a warranty. It won’t be the same as a new mobility scooter, but they may offer a shorter period, 3 months for example. Try and barter and get the longest warranty you can. One last point is to insist on new batteries.
Buying from a Private Seller
You can often source a real bargain from sites like eBay, Gumtree and Facebook Marketplace. You can purchase secondhand mobility scooters for under £100. However, do your research before you purchase. REMEMBER, if the deal appears too good, it often is! You might be purchasing online or using social media and not able to view the vehicle until the actual exchange of money. Follow these top tips when purchasing a secondhand scooter:
Check the battery
It is likely that the battery has been well used, this is obviously a very important component in a mobility scooter. Ask the seller how long the battery normally takes to charge and how long it lasts. Ask if the scooter keeps cutting out? If so, this could be a sign the battery needs replacing.
Read the advert carefully
Pay close attention to the advert, sometimes the seller may hide faults in the advert, sandwiched between good points. If anything isn’t clear, ask.
Why they are selling?
Ask why they are selling their scooter. Ask whether they have maintained the vehicle regularly, ask if they could produce any service documents or receipts for work carried out on the scooter.
Who has undertaken any maintenance
Check who has undertaken any works on the mobility scooter. Is the company/person well known. If the scooter has been serviced by a company like Mobility Services Direct, you know that it has be well taken care of and can purchase with confidence. If you’re purchasing remotely, you could ask the seller to take pictures of these documents and send them to you electronically.
Visually inspect the Mobility Scooter
Before you agree to buy, visual inspect the scooter, take your time and have a thorough look at all the parts. Check for wear and tear, check the tyres, does the seat show signs of excessive use. Is the scooter clean? This would give an indication on how the seller has treated the scooter during ownership. Check for any signs of rust, this lead to break downs sooner than expected.
Take the scooter for a test drive, don’t buy with out driving the vehicle. Is it comfortable to drive, do you feel safe when driving? You’ll also be able to test components like the brakes. Are there any screeching noises when applying the brakes? This could be a sign that maintenance will be needed soon. When moving forward or backwards or increasing speed, is there any jerking motion? This could be a sign of a faulty gear mechanism. Test all of the electrical components. Lights, horn etc. If one of these components doesn’t work, it could be a sign of a potential electrical problem.
Check the paperwork
Ask the seller for any original paperwork, especially the owners manual, along with service documentation. As already mentioned, ask for any maintenance records for you to verify.
Check the Mobility Scooter Number
Find the mobility scooter number/serial number and check with the manufacturer that the model advertised has the features the seller is claiming. You should also check whether parts are still available for the scooter, as there is no point in buying a vehicle that you can no longer purchase parts for.
General points for purchasing secondhand
Never send cash in advance
Be aware if the scooter is a lot cheaper than you’d expect
Be cautious if the seller is pressuring you into purchasing quickly, they may be trying to cover up an issue with the scooter. They may use the tactic, “Somebody else is interested”. Only commit when you are ready, even if you miss out, there will be other deals.
Never arrange to meet in a location like a lay-by or car park. Alway meet at the sellers home, in a well lit place where people frequent, or a place with CCTV coverage.
Take somebody with you if you don’t feel comfortable on your own.
If you go on your own, tell somebody where you are going and what time you are meeting the seller. Keep your mobile phone with you and turned on
If you pay with cash you might be able to secure a better deal, but you won’t have any protection if things go wrong, unlike if you use a credit card or PayPal.
If you use a debit card, you may be protected by the ‘chargeback’ scheme. If you card issuer offers it.
Credit card purchases will be eligible for section 75 protection. This is still the case if you only paid for part of the mobility scooter using your credit card
Insist on a signed receipt from the seller
Here at Mobility Services Direct, we’d be happy to service your new purchase for your peace of mind, get in touch for a quote, you’ll be surprised how competitive our prices are, and we come to you. We also offer an annual care package, an all inclusive care package for your mobility scooter. You’ll be able use your scooter with the peace of mind that your vehicle will be well maintained and there will be no unexpected call-out charges if a problem occurs.
If you have any question please get in contact with us, give us a call, instant message us or use our contact form.