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Used-Car Lemon Laws

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,315
edited August 2015 in General
imageUsed-Car Lemon Laws

Lemon laws protect new car buyers in every state in the nation, but it's far more common for used-car buyers to get stuck with an unreliable vehicle, or to incur repair bills that cost more than the car. For such unfortunate consumers, it often goes downhill from there.

Read the full story here


  • taoskier_taoskier_ Member Posts: 1
    I read that some state forces a seller to take the car back for full refund after 15 days or so. I was LA were the same. My 2003 Nissan Sentra keeps threatening not to start. Worse, it's like that house on that old show Green Acres. You open the glove compartment and it falls on the floor. The radio doesn't work. You hit the dome light and the entire assembly moves. I mainly blame impatience. I teach and I wanted a car before the first meeting, which was today. The car got me there and back, but that car's like a house of cards. Or a castle in the sand that will flow back to the sea. Eventually. Thanks Jimi.
  • alvin15alvin15 Member Posts: 1
  • tsibiliatsibilia Member Posts: 1
    edited August 2015
    BUYER BEWARE! KEYSTONE AUTOMOTIVE SALES & SERVICE / Keystone Auto Sales and Service - ([Phone number removed] - 749 N Keyser Avenue - Scranton, PA 18504. Just wanted to publicly tell all my friends and family to avoid this place. For those of you who personally know us, you have heard our car horror stories from the past few months dealing with this place. I am not one to vent on social media or publicly complain, but in this case I am making an exception. I posted on their fb page, and my comment was deleted! Then they changed the settings so all posts need to be approved before going public. Wow.
  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,454
    edited August 2015
    Try posting in Dealer Reviews.

    There's also Yelp, DealerRater, Google....
  • brownsugar903brownsugar903 Member Posts: 1
    I was trusting to this dealership on Dec.19,2015. They sold me a GMC 2004 Envoy with about 2000 worth of damage on drivers side. (didn't know and was not told) (senior citizen)
  • TreeneedsmeeTreeneedsmee Member Posts: 1
    I bought a 2004 Buick LeSabre Edition, not knowing what the smell was on the passenger side floor mat. Found out its coolent leaking from under the dash I was told by a Buick dealership it was a heater core, also the loose gas cap light stays on after buying dealership cap. Then the stablizer light came on told it was the brakes. I just went through a hurricane, it took my car with it so I was desperate for a new used car. I signed up for a used car loan no one would take it. My issue is verbally I was told I could have up to $2000. The rest would be on me, not knowing the laws of buying a used car, I'm at the mercy of their word. Very nice people, I can't afford a mechanic bill, no I didn't know about any issues before other than the smell and they said they would have it fixed before the final signing. It didn't happen. I didn't have a mechanic look at it because I took them for their word. I'm old school so a hand shake is what I was taught. Help is needed please, I am willing to pat for the work if they will add it to my payments. Any answers will help thank you. The car one owner, less than 79810 miles on the car.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    edited April 2019
    Well if it's not in writing that they promised to fix something prior to sale, then I don't think there is much you can do except try and plead your case in Small Claims Court. SMC is sometimes sympathetic to consumers, even if their "proof" is slim. Sometimes just filing a SMC case is enough to get a dealer to do something. Also, read the article above to see if any of the used car lemon-laws apply in your state, and if so, if they apply to your particular situation.
  • thebeanthebean Member Posts: 1,216
    Tell them if they don’t live up to their word, you will put it out on several social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter). Then do it if they don’t help you out. Be careful to only put the truth on social media. Any embellishments can put you at risk for slander suits.
    2015 Honda Accord EX, 2019 Honda HR-V EX
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Replacing a heater core is a pretty big promise --very labor intensive on most cars.
  • Nancy636Nancy636 Member Posts: 1
    On May 18 2019 Napleton Mid Rivers Kia sold me a car with bad front brakes. I am disabled, was just widowed and I put a little more than 400 miles on this 23k miles 2017 Kia Forte. My brother and I heard the front end making this noise during test drive. It was supposedly checked by service dept. They said it was the pressure. My brat had doubts. I didn't prckupthe car till the 24T because Iletny license lapse because of a fall, my husband took me where I needed to go. I took it down the road from home to a mechanic my husband used and trusted for years. I wanted to find out what that noise and a new noise was and why. I was not a good sound! The front brake rotors are bad, the pads were breaking up, what was left of them anyway. He showed my brother and called me and told me it looked like the car sat for long periods oftwe and voters rusted. The car was 'shipped from NY, it was a leaseFront brakes were in bad shape. I told him to put it back together I was taking it to dealer. I did. I went to dealer thinking they would make it Right, how stupid of me. They are truly spin doctors. UTY compared the incident to buying a car on Craigslist. Really? Insinuated I rode the brakes, as it would take 1000 miles of riding brakes to do that damage. Then said they saw nothing wrong. I totd them the noise was not the pressure as they said when I bought it. They sold a car with dangerous brakes and that was the bottom line. Every ÷ they said contradicted previous crap that came out of their mouth. My brother - them this was [non-permissible content removed] and they had the gall to reprimand him for his language. No resolution was reached only the strangest double talk that made my head spin. A couple of my brothers feel that Any look advantage of a disabled, greivinq older woman. I didnt want to think that but I am believing it. Before I left dealers I told them ,almost in tears, that just because I have a walker don't assume I don't know how to drive. I recurred an email from service dept. that said I was a no show and to reschedule. I don’t think they want a record that I was there. In the most maddening part was that the sales manager was smirking I had to leave before I started crying because I didn’t want them to see it Do I have any recourse? Don’t get me wrong I have no hope of being treated fairly in this matter but it really pisses me off and I don’t like being taken advantage of it wouldn’t have talked to my husband like that .
  • WilliamWasTakenWilliamWasTaken Member Posts: 1
    We bought a used 2012 Volkswagen Passat TDI SEL from a dealer on Halloween. Not even 24 hours go by and the car's battery dies. They sent someone out to jump the car, and then we drove to the service department. They simply recharged the battery and sent us off. About a month later, the car dies again! It was turned off for about 10 minutes and that was enough to drain the battery. However, we got it to run again. Fast forward to about a week ago, and the car died a third time! This time, the car was completely on at the gas station and it just died! Imagine if the battery died while we were on the road, god forbid the Interstate. We had to have a friend come out and jump us. We got in touch with the dealer and because they don't have the equipment for Volkswagen vehicles, we would have to go to the next town over, to their partner dealership, who specializes in Volkswagen vehicles. We're gonna go there sometime soon.
  • merseacarsmerseacars Member Posts: 1
    I am very happy to see this post because it really a nice post. Thanks
  • Unit562Unit562 Member Posts: 1
    Good to know I'm 100% boned. Purchased a 2003 Pontiac Aztek, 133k miles, great condition. Ran great, no engine noises or issues, I've been a mechanic for the past 8 years so no, there's no way I missed anything. I noticed the lower intake manifold gasket had recently been replaced as there was new silicone so I figured sweet! the most common problem on these 3.4l Buick V6's has been fixed. No way of being able to tell, but whoever did the repair over tightened all of the rocker arm retaining bolts, which are known to be too small to start with. Now they're all stripping out and I need new heads on both banks. I've driven the car 1,000 miles almost exactly in 2 months and now it's a paper weight. No shop wants to touch it because it's a huge liability, even if they did the repairs are more than I paid for the car.
  • TarriB2021TarriB2021 Member Posts: 1
    If I could give zero stars I would! I purchased a 2018 Nissan Murano at the end of July 2021 and I have had nothing but problems since I purchased the vehicle. I spoke with the salesman “R” over the phone and told him I was interested in purchasing a brand new Venza. He said he would call me back once he got me approved. The next day I received a call from salesman “R” letting me know that I had been approved and to come in and sign the paperwork. I get to the dealership and test drive the car, only to find out that I have been approved for a car payment of $750.00, I could not believe it! There was no way I was driving off the lot paying a $750.00 a month car payment. I would have never driven an hour to the dealership had I known those were the figures he came up with. Oh, I planned on leaving the dealership since they really didn’t have any other cars on the lot to choose from, the lot was almost empty at that time, and I didn’t want any of the smaller cars they had available.

    Salesman “R” informs me of a 2018 Nissan Murano that they had available. I didn’t know this car was available at the time, since it wasn’t on the lot. He asked me if I would like to take a look at it, and I told him yes. He brought the car around, gave me the keys and told me to take it for a test drive. I gave the vehicle a walkaround, and took it for a test drive. I enjoyed the ride and I didn’t notice any problems at the time. So, I decided to make the purchase, the vehicle had everything that I was looking for and I was happy. Salesman “R” processed the paperwork, and I headed over to finance. After I was done with the paperwork, Salesman “R” advised me to wait so he could have the car washed.

    About 20 mins goes by and he comes back with the car and he hands me the keys. We opened up the trunk to look inside and I noticed there was water running down the walls of the trunk. Salesman “R” informed me that the service department may not have closed the trunk properly, which may have allowed water to get in. I was a bit skeptical, but I went ahead home with confidence in what he said.

    August 28th, while I'm out running errands, I decided to go and get my car washed. After leaving the car wash I stopped off at Walmart to do a return. I opened the trunk of my car to get the item I was going to return, and noticed water running down the sides of the trunk. I was pissed! I know now that the service department hadn’t forgotten to close the trunk, there was a legit problem. I thought back on what Salesman “R” told me before I left the car dealership, that’s when I knew I had a very serious problem.

    I texted Salesman”R” that same day to address the water leak, also to let him know that I was very unhappy, and I did not want to come out of pocket to repair the leak. Salesman “R” agreed and assured me that he would have someone call me to remedy the issue. After the text, he ended up calling me about an hour later, and I explained to him the issue. He had the audacity to say “I told you, you should have bought the Venza”. It took everything in me not to give him a piece of my mind, as I explained to him that it doesn’t matter which car I purchased,the car shouldn’t have water seeping down the walls of the trunk.

    Salesman “R” advised that he would have someone from used car sales reach out to me, so that I can have the repairs done. I waited a week with no response, so I texted him again to let him know that no one had reached out to me. He assured me once again that he would have someone call me. He reached out to me a week later and told me that the girl that handles the used car issues had been fired and that he would have someone else reach out to me. Well, I waited another week with no response, so I decided to call. It just so happened that he was in the office with the supervisor that I was supposed to speak to. He put me on speaker phone and assured me that they were working on how they were going to resolve the issue. I waited once again, and a week later a nice young lady reached out to me and scheduled an appointment for me to come to the dealership and meet with service manager “I”. I was scheduled to go to the dealership on 9/25 and have the vehicle looked at and or resolve the issues.

    9/25 I met with the Service Manager “I”. I explained to him the issues I was having with the car, and he advised that I get in the car, and go for what I thought would be a test drive. Instead he told me to put the car in reverse a couple of times, and then put the car into “park”. That was the end of the test drive/diagnostic...WTF?! He then advised that I leave the car for 2 hours and he would come to the waiting room to get me when he was done. I was a bit puzzled but I obliged.

    I walked down the street to have lunch and when I came back my car was parked in the front parking lot, the car was dry! I was confused as to what they had done while I was gone for 2 hours. How can you fix a leak without taking the car through the car wash, or at minimum hose down the trunk? I headed into the office to pick up my keys, and a nice Asian man told me that the car was fixed. I asked what they had done, and he said he didn’t know, and that he was told by the service manager to let me know the leak was fixed.

    Sunday, 9/26 around 4pm, I take my car to the car wash, I drive off and I hear water dripping. I look in the trunk and water is everywhere! Water is leaking in two new areas and the trunk won’t open! The key fob won’t open the trunk, the button on the dash won’t open it, and I can’t open it manually. They actually made the issue worse! I am beyond pissed off at this point, as it is confirmed I was sold a lemon.

    Oh, the issues don't stop there! They were supposed to check out the transmission and the air conditioning issues. I am convinced there is a problem with the transmission that the service manager just glossed over as if nothing is wrong. The air conditioner does not blow at the footwell. They knew what was wrong with this vehicle, there's no doubt in my mind. I now have to spend $200.00 for a diagnostic to get an honest analysis of the vehicle to see what my future expenses will be.

    I ended up taking the car to a body shop a few of weeks ago, and they confirmed the car had been in an accident. The tech at the body shop shook the rear passenger door because he noticed the window had been replaced, it sounded like a baby rattle, as there's still a ton of glass left inside the door panel! They didn't even bother to clean it out! The carfax didn't show any accidents, but that doesn't mean much. I'll go back to the body shop and get everything they told me in writing! I will never trust this dealership again, not the salesman, and definitely not their scamming service department...liars! What a horrible experience.
  • MissVee2021_MissVee2021_ Member Posts: 1
    I purchased a 2015 Dodge Durango Limited about 3 years ago. I did purchase an extended warranty which I called and was told, my air conditioning problem would be covered, well of course that was a wasted 2600 dollars because I have to pay almost 4 grand for the repair. WTH?? How does an air conditioner line and such completely corrode on a vehicle six years old? All I could figure for sure, the dealer knew about this and didn't bother to disclose or even better, for what I paid, they should have fixed it before selling it. So now...I will be selling this pos so called made in Mexico and assembled here to the Toyota dealer. Everyone I know with a Toyota has had none of the problems I've had and get this, I've probably only put 100 miles on it because my job was sent home due to Covid. My advice, DON'T BOTHER WITH EXTENDED WARRENTIES, they have small print to void them.
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