How to sell a car?

When selling a car to a dealership for trade in or selling it to somewhere like carmax do I have have to tell them what is wrong with it?

My car needs a new power steering pump, but the only way anyone would know is if they drove it around for more than 1/2 hour and then the power steering will go out.

Am I obligated to tell them this? I know that if I where to sell my car to a private party then I would definatly tell them...should I use the same good faith with dealerships?

7 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    From a legal standpoint, you're only required to tell the dealership if the car has been totalled or flooded. That being said, you're not obligated to offer any information that the dealer does not ask for. If they do not ask, you do not have to tell them. But if they ask, "Is there anything mechanically wrong with the car?" you are obligated to tell them. To lie and say, "no" could put you in a sticky situation if they decide to pursue you (which is HIGHLY unlikely... it'd cost more to go after you than to replace the power steering pump themselves).

    In short, if they ask, tell them. If they don't ask, then it's their fault for not asking.

    If you are selling to a private person, DEFINATELY tell them. Though the same rules apply (if they don't ask you don't have to tell), a private party will not have the resources (such as lots of mechanics and parts available) to quickly fix the problem.

  • 1 decade ago

    I am not sure if you are legally obligated but it would be a nice curtesy to them. Not to mention if you sell it/trade it to a respectable dealership they will check the vehicle out before giving you their price.

    Now I can tell you that even if you tell them and they do nothing to fix it they may not tell the people who buys it. We bought a used car and there had been significant damage done to the car during an accident. The owner at the time told the dealership but the dealership did not tell us. I found out when I met the old owner.

    And carfax is not alway accurate. It does leave off information. Good luck.

    Source(s): have dealt with this when trading cars in to dealerships and buying used cars.
  • 1 decade ago

    I think if the dealership asks you then you're obligated not to lie. But otherwise the dealer is in the business of cars and they have the knowledge to find out things on their own. It's not like you're selling to a private party who are not charged with the same knowledge/expertise about cars.

  • 1 decade ago

    Forget the legal stuff - seems like that's all this country is concerned about. What does your conscience tell you? You have to be at peace with yourself.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    I would only tell them if they ask if anything is wrong. Don't offer them any information.

  • jester
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    it would all depend on if where i took it to if i was planning to maybe go back sometime or not. if i was then i would say what is wrong with it. but if i wasn't then i wouldn't say a word.

  • 1 decade ago

    you don't have to tell them but chances are they,ll find it out anyway,they,ll test drive it and find anything wrong with it,if they don't find it ,you don't have to tell ,if they don't ask you don't have to tell,good luck with it.

    Source(s): been a certified mechanic for 37 yrs.
Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.