Image used for representational purpose.
Image used for representational purpose.

Here's what you need to check before buying a second-hand bike

  • Buying a pre-owned motorcycle can be quite a bargain but it can also be quite the headache if certain parameters are not checked and verified before purchase.

You have decided to buy a bike. But be it your budget or the fact that you are a first-time rider makes you think that a pre-owned or second-hand bike is perhaps the better route to take. It will certainly save you some money.

Remember that by buying a second-hand bike you are transferring the ownership from the previous owner to yourself. This means you need to obtain all the relevant documents, including the original registration certificate (RC) of the vehicle, insurance certificate, pollution under control (PUC) certificate before you can call it your own. The documents are required to get the Transfer Vehicle Registration Certificate (TVRC), which gives the new owner legal possession over the bike.

Here are a few pointers to help you through:

Sourcing the second-hand bike: There are two ways to go about with it. One can buy from a second-hand dealer or directly purchase it from the owner. Buying it from the dealer means that the machine has likely been checked before being put up for sale. Buying directly saves money, but involves risk as well because you mostly do not know anything about the bike's condition.

Checking the bike: You might think that the bike looks snazzy but looks can be deceiving. There are two important things to remember while purchasing a second-hand bike. They include a mechanical check and a paper-work check.

Mechanical check

Oil leaks: Check around the engine to see if there are any oil leaks.

Rust: The metal parts of bike will invariably catch rust over years. If the rust is light, it is still okay. However, if the oxidization runs deep, the body parts may need replacement.

Scratch marks: A scratch here and there might be acceptable, but make sure it does not run deep, or it will only damage the overall look of the bike.

Check engine: Turn the ignition on and check the engine for any visible fumes or smoke. If so, then refrain from purchasing the bike.

Also check the spark plug, the battery, brakes, clutch and gears. Take a test ride if possible before zeroing in on the bike.

Paper-work check

Registration certificate book: The engine and chassis number on the bike should match the ones in the RC book. The colour, number of owners and other details need to be in it as well.

Tax certificate: It should have a valid tax certificate.

Insurance: Check if the two-wheeler has valid insurance. If the insurance is not valid, you might need to shell out money for the same.

PUC certificate: Every Indian vehicle needs a valid PUC. Check if the bike has one.

Full service history: A good second-hand bike will have a full-service history.

NOC: A No Objection Certificate is mandatory for transfer of ownership.

Finally, negotiation is the key. Once you have succeeded in choosing a bike. Negotiate according to your spending capability. During negotiation, make sure to keep in mind the expenses you may incur after purchasing the bike.

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