If you are looking to buy a dependable and convenient mode of transportation, a van is a great choice. Also, some van tips can help steer you clear of poor choices or rip-offs.
Vans are reliable and versatile vehicles, from moving furniture to hauling material and people, selling, or moving. The modern box van is highly fuel-efficient, durable, and spacious. As a result, buying the right one can help you save time and money.
Van buying tips can also help you avoid potential purchase mistakes. You can find well-maintained high-mileage vans or avoid overpaying for tricked-out vans used for display only.
Read the simple van buying tips below to find out the best way to buy a van to meet your needs by putting yourself in the driver’s seat:
1. Do Your Research
When you’re shopping for a van, think about what type of trip you’re taking and what you’ll need while on vacation. This will help you decide what size van is best for you.
Consider how many people will be traveling with you and factor that into your decision. A larger van will be more comfortable, but it may not be able to accommodate everyone’s needs. Offroad vans offer different features than regular traveling vans, so it’s always a good idea to consider everything before making the final move.
Also, be specific about what you need in a van, such as a kitchenette or an extra space. Not all vans come equipped with these features, so be sure to ask before making your purchase. Some vans come equipped with features like air conditioning or Wi-Fi that can make your travels more comfortable and convenient.
Think about which amenities are important to you and whether those features are available on the model you’re considering.
2. Decide What Type of Van You Want
There are three main types of vans: passenger vans, cargo vans, and pickup trucks.
Passenger vans are the least expensive and generally best suited for people who need occasional transportation but don’t necessarily need lots of space.
Cargo vans are larger and can hold more goods than passenger vans, but they’re more expensive and may not be as comfortable for passengers.
Pickup trucks are the most popular type of van and offer the best combination of price, space, and functionality.
3. Get a Good Estimate of the Cost
Van pricing can vary significantly depending on the make and model, so it’s important to do your homework before choosing one. One thing to keep in mind is that vans can be expensive to maintain. Make sure you factor this into your budget when shopping. Additionally, be prepared for increased gas and mileage costs when driving a van.
4. Make Sure the Van Is Insured
A van can be a great way to get around and explore new places, but if something goes wrong – like you get stuck in the middle of nowhere – you’ll want to be sure that your vehicle is covered. Some things to keep in mind when insurance shopping for a van include:
- Make sure the coverage includes accidents and damage from theft
- Consider whether the van has collision and comprehensive coverage
- Be sure to find out what level of coverage is required in your state
- Ensure that the insurance company is reputable and has a good history with claims
- Discuss your policies with a qualified insurance agent
5. Buy a Van with Great Fuel Economy
When you’re shopping for a van, one of the most important factors to consider is fuel economy. A van with excellent fuel economy can save you money on your fuel bill and could also be a valuable tool for commuting or long-distance travel. Here are some tips for finding a van with great fuel economy:
- Look for a van that is rated at least 30 MPG in the city and 50 MPG on the highway
- Consider what kind of engine your van has. A V6 or V8 engine will typically get better gas mileage than a smaller engine
- Make sure the van has good aerodynamics – weight distribution and downforce are critical factors in determining how much gas your van will use
- Choose a van with low rolling resistance tires if you want to achieve the best fuel economy possible
6. Install Safety and Security Equipment
When you’re ready to hit the open road, make sure you outfit your van with safety and security equipment. Here are some things to consider:
Install a Security System
A good security system can help keep your belongings safe while you’re on the road. Look for systems that have both visual and audible alerts, so you can be sure you’ll hear if someone tries to break into your van.
Install a Safe
A safe is a great way to store your valuables while you’re on the road. Make sure the safe is large enough to fit everything you’ll want to protect, and install it in a secure location inside or outside of your van.
Install Window Locks
If you’re going to be away from your van for an extended period of time, install window locks so no one can easily gain access without your permission.
Install bumper stickers that warn drivers not to break into vans. These stickers can help deter would-be thieves and make a statement about your security philosophy.
Enjoy Your Van Trip!
Do your research on what kind of van you want and what will best fit your needs for your trip. Consider renting a van before you buy one to get a feel for what size, style, and amenities you may want.
Once you’ve decided to buy a van, be sure to get a pre-purchase inspection from a qualified mechanic. When negotiating the price, keep in mind the cost of necessary repairs and maintenance. Be prepared to haggle and walk away if the seller isn’t willing to budge on price.
And, for more tips and guides about vehicle maintenance, please read other articles on our blog, and don’t miss out!