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Looking at buying a used machine? Here’s some top tips to help you make the right decision
David Burke
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Looking at buying a used machine? Here’s some top tips to help you make the right decision

Buying part-used machinery is a very viable and affordable alternative. In order to ensure a wise investment in a piece of used machinery Pat O’Donnell & Co have compiled a short guide on what we look for when viewing any used machines.

First Impression

Always look at the aesthetic appearance of the machine and check if it’s in good condition and it’s not rough, dirty or dinted. Do a four point walk around and see if there are any panels damaged. Has the machine been repainted? If so ask why.  Always check the condition of the ground engaging components, check for wear points and the state of the bucket teeth. Inspect the drive train, are there any oil leaks? What’s the condition of the pins and bushes?

The way a machine looks gives a prospective buyer an insight into how it has been maintained and used.

Test drive the equipment

Operating the equipment to see how it handles and bares weight is critical. It’s worth spending some time with the machine loading it up and checking how it performs. Take a test drive moving it backwards and forwards and lift the moving parts to make sure there’s no major issues. If it’s an excavator be sure to inspect the undercarriage thoroughly and check the position of the track adjuster, as tracks wear when they are tightened.

Check the engine

In order for the machine to run efficiently and cost effectively check the engine is in good condition. Look at the engine smoke, is it blowing excessively or is the smoke coloured? Generally this can be a tell-tale sign of engine issues. Oil leaks are another element to look out for; these can be checked by looking underneath or around the machine. If oil is leaking it can affect the transmission. Modern machinery has computer logs which need to be analysed, getting an ECU reading enables buyers to check hour meters.

Do your research

Doing comprehensive research is important not only so you know you’re buying the right piece of equipment for the right job but also so you know it will work and you’re paying the right price.

For more information on our range of used machinery please click here 
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