A big rig or semi-truck can be very expensive for any individual owner or company owner, which is why it's often good to buy a used model versus a new one. However, there are some special considerations to remember when buying a used big rig, as these heavy-duty trucks suffer excessive wear and tear due to their heavy loads and just their own weight. You want to ensure you take the time to thoroughly inspect any used big rig before you buy, and note a few considerations to keep in mind so you know you get one that will work for you and last for years.
Know who maintained the truck
If the owner of the truck handled his or her own maintenance and certain repairs, this might be a red flag. Many drivers are good with needed repairs under the hood but they typically cannot work on a truck as well as a licensed mechanic. An owner may know how to perform basic maintenance and replace a few belts and hoses, but a licensed mechanic will know how to look for excessive wear and tear on certain parts, might notice fluid leaks that a driver might overlook, and otherwise have expertise that a driver or owner will not. Be cautious about a big rig if the owner handled the majority of repairs and maintenance tasks, especially if they don't have a written record or log of all the work they performed on the truck.
Note the history of the engine model
You can often look up certain engine models and note if they are known to have certain problems such as overheating, blown gaskets, and the like. You want to choose a rig with an engine that has a good reputation for longevity and durability.
Pay attention to the cab and interior
While you may be concerned with the mechanics of a big rig, you also should check on the cab and interior as well. If a driver or owner has not maintained or has neglected the interior, they may not have actually maintained the truck itself. Note if the cab seems to have suffered more wear and tear than you would expect from a truck of its age or if it's been kept clean. Note too if it offers comfort for a driver; durable seat covers and a good seat itself will mean less fatigue for those long hauls, which can actually increase your driver's safety when on the road.