Contributor: Ethan Nadolson, CEO, SOARR
My father, who is known as “Bear” and looks the part with a large build, full beard, powerful hands, and an unmistakable voice that you can easily follow as it booms through any crowd, came to me one summer and was asking why I didn’t have a job. He knew that I had been a hard worker since I was small, mowing lawns, and shoveling snow for the neighbors from the time I could push a mower. I had wanted to work but no one would hire me, and besides, it was the summertime just after school got out and none of my friends had a job either.
These excuses fell upon deaf ears. Excuses were not an option with him, so he told me I could come work for him at the truck dealership where he managed the used truck operations at two locations. I was put to work doing "lot work," detailing trucks, and running the pressure washer to degrease the frames of trucks they were looking to sell. All the while, my father was teaching me how to appraise trucks and show me the proverbial ropes of the business.
Of course, I had time to learn over the next several years since I was only 11 and couldn’t go to work for anyone else for at least another five more years.
Over the course of the next seven years, I became proficient at appraising used trucks and assessing their condition. I would go on to get my CDL and work full time at the dealership, even taking management training courses to follow my father in his trade.
One thing that I learned at an early age was that the condition of a truck is a major factor in its value, and that it takes years of experience to know how to assess the overall condition of a used truck and inspect it properly. Many seasoned owner-operators or small fleet managers have wide experience in this area and know how to assess the condition. However, if you are a first -time owner-operator it can be intimidating, to say the least. With today’s technologically advanced trucks, even a trained professional like myself cannot assess the full condition without an ECM reader and other tools. This is especially difficult for buying a used commercial truck online without seeing the truck in person until the time of delivery.
This is where our great friends at TA Truck Service come into the picture. Dealers, finance companies, fleets, auction companies, and other such institutions utilize the ASE Certified Mechanics at TA Truck Service to assess the condition of trucks they are looking to acquire.
When buying a used truck, you can look for the “Certified” inspection sticker in the window of the truck or logo on an online listing. On TruckTractorTrailer.com (TTT) you can look for a truck that is advertised as a TTT360 or TTT360+ listing which means it has had a TA Inspection that includes a DOT inspection.
These third-party inspected units set them apart from every other listing in my book as it is total transparency from a name you can trust. These inspections are so well respected in the industry that even major warranty companies like National Truck Protection and Premium2000+ will add a warranty offer to the units that pass this inspection, as long as they meet the rest their warranty criteria like mileage and year, for example.
A few of the Certified Used Truck Inspection key components that are checked during an inspection are:
In addition, technicians inspect the following cab components and note any issues or deficiencies on the Used Truck Inspection form left with the truck following inspection:
This sounds great when buying a used truck but what about selling one? What about the owner-operator or fleet that wants to have the same competitive edge with a certified inspection, warranty, and even financing available?
The good news is that TTT has leveled the playing field for the first time in history. TTT empowers used truck sellers to have the same capability as the dealer for a quality purchase. Getting your truck inspected and listed for sale couldn’t be easier.
Simply register and list your truck as a TTT360+ inspection. TA will inspect your truck(s), collect all of the needed mechanical conditions, specifications, and even give you a quote for any work that needs to be completed for the truck to pass inspection!
Once the inspection is complete, simply publish the listing and let TruckTractorTrailer.com do the rest.