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Old 05-25-2010, 10:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Frame/Unibody damage questions

I was posting on "Forester Shopping" but my possible purchase of a 2005 FXT just hit a roadblock. So I think this forum area is maybe a better place to post now (?) I'm new here, so direct me to proper forum if this isn't it! My signature is my FUTURE purchase. I had a CarFax that showed an accident in 2007 on prospective purchase. A new Experian AutoCheck report shows FRAME damage! (Carfax didn't report this!) The Seller (whom I actually believe!) called me up in a panic today because a potential buyer ran the report and forwarded it to him, accusing him of dishonesty. Seems the auction house Seller bought this from gave him a Carfax and it showed no accident and the auction house did not report the damage before sale. He bought in Feb 2010. It seems that this update on the AutoCheck report was ammended in April 2010, which is two months after he bought it at auction!!! How can they get away with that?

Here is that part of the report:
02/01/2010 EASTERN REGION 97,410 Auto Auction REPORTED AT AUTO AUCTION AS DEALER VEHICLE
02/02/2010 EASTERN REGION 97,410 Auto Auction REPORTED AT AUTO AUCTION
03/19/2010 PA 97,689 Auto Auction REPORTED AT AUTO AUCTION

04/13/2010 EASTERN REGION Auto Auction AUCTION ANNOUNCED AS FRAME DAMAGE
04/20/2010 EASTERN REGION 97,953 Auto Auction REPORTED AT AUTO AUCTION
04/20/2010 EASTERN REGION Auto Auction AUCTION ANNOUNCED AS UNIBODY DAMAGE
04/30/2010 EASTERN REGION Auto Auction AUCTION ANNOUNCED AS UNIBODY DAMAGE

I had called the previous owners Suburu Dealer yesterday and I talked to their Service dept. Very informative mechanic read me the vehicle service history. I told him I had seen an accident reported in the Carfax and he gave me the number of the Body Shop they refer people to, but the Shop said they did not have that VIN in their database. Im having it inspected by a mechanic tonight and I guess I should see a Body guy as well. I know frames can be safely repaired depending on the damage. One thing for sure, this sale price will really drop now! Any thoughts? or is it just.."Run awayyyyyy"
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Old 05-26-2010, 03:21 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Ahhh, the hysteria of CarFax and their ilk. They are as much of a curse as they are a help.

Well, first of all I'd advise you have any car checked by a body shop, if possible, to see if they can find any evidence of prior repairs. Not every accident is going to make it onto CarFax or whatever report you're getting. Secondly, I've dealt with auction damage reports and "frame damage" can mean anything from a tie down being bent from a car carrier to full-blown crappy collision repair. So while it may be a flag to have it looked at, it doesn't mean it was actually involved in any kind of serious accident.

Dealerships and mechanics are not typically useful in looking at crash repairs or crash damage. Few of them are smart or trained in what to look for, though they think they are. If I trusted one of the local dealer's geniuses every car ever made would have "paint work" on it. If a car has been poorly repaired, it will be apparent. It only takes a few simple measurements to make sure everything is 'square'. I would not panic.
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:45 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Unibody damage OK but Seller wasn't!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ddavidv View Post
Ahhh, the hysteria of CarFax and their ilk. They are as much of a curse as they are a help.

Well, first of all I'd advise you have any car checked by a body shop, if possible, to see if they can find any evidence of prior repairs. Not every accident is going to make it onto CarFax or whatever report you're getting. Secondly, I've dealt with auction damage reports and "frame damage" can mean anything from a tie down being bent from a car carrier to full-blown crappy collision repair....
Yep, unibody damage turned out to be no big deal...I met with Seller (who actually turned out to be the Auctioner’s employee FXT still belonged to the Auction house!) at the mechanics last night and a whole lot of other discrepancies came out. Found one spot with repaired unibody damage in driver-side engine compartment near the battery and Seller tried to explain it away because the "engine heat was concentrated there"!! Also Seller freely admitted to using Regular grade gas for the last 2K miles and said, "Why not?" Mechanic found some other problems and car appears it has been sitting around a while, AC compressor was frozen, rusty and no belt and other strange issues....so its a "no go".

So I'm posting in "Shopping" again and probably in the Forester Wanted section! I'm in NJ so anyone with a FXT for sale in the tri-state area, contact me! I can't afford a new nicely modded one, more like a 2004-5 with higher milage.
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