Kia Forte Forum banner
1 - 20 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone - Hope this is in the right place
Thanks for creating this awesome forum and meeting the wonderful people here. I am looking to get a 2011 kia forte vehicle and I am looking to the community to check if there is anything I should be looking out for while doing my inspection.

They asking price is $7,000 and it has 88000 miles with a Salvage Title.
If you guys have any suggestions on what to check.
Looking forward to joining this family, thanks
Automotive parking light Wheel Tire Car Automotive side-view mirror

Tire Wheel Land vehicle Car Vehicle

Car Vehicle Gear shift Speedometer Motor vehicle
 

·
Registered
2021 Forte GT w/GT2, Currant Red, Wagner-Tuning Intercooler, Evilla Exhaust, Takeda S2 Intake
Joined
·
6,134 Posts
Welcome to forteforums.

A salvage title is given to a car that was considered "totaled" (damaged enough that it was more expensive to repair then the car was worth). IMO you should steer clear of that car - unless you are a mechanic yourself.

Typically, those who repair totaled cars do as little repairs as necessary to resell the car and leave small problems that can turn in to big headaches for you.

Here's an example: Years ago, my daughter bought a salvaged Honda Civic. She told me her horn wasn't working, so I told her to bring the car to me and I'd try to fix it. Turned out the horn didn't work because an entire engine compartment wire harness was missing! The SOBs had run 12-gauge wires from the taillights, through the passenger compartment, to provide power to the headlights and blinkers.
 

·
Registered
2022 Forte GT2
Joined
·
123 Posts
Hello everyone - Hope this is in the right place
Thanks for creating this awesome forum and meeting the wonderful people here. I am looking to get a 2011 kia forte vehicle and I am looking to the community to check if there is anything I should be looking out for while doing my inspection.

They asking price is $7,000 and it has 88000 miles with a Salvage Title.
If you guys have any suggestions on what to check.
Looking forward to joining this family, thanks
View attachment 89157
View attachment 89158
View attachment 89159
Have you run the vin through a car history site like Carfax to get more details about the salvage title?
 

·
Registered
2011 Kia Forte5 EX
Joined
·
108 Posts
I agree with ForteGT2. Additionally the roof appears to have paint damage which indicates to me that the vehicle has been sitting for a long time. The front bumper cover is damaged but is also non-matching paint(based on the photo) indicating this vehicle has been in a front end collision once and got swiped again resulting in the current paint damage.

It appears to be an LX model which is the base model Forte or a debadged EX(likely the former). If it was an SX with a normal title I'd say go for it but because it's an LX with salvage title it should only be worth around $1500 and that's only because of the mileage. Someone's trying to rip you off in my opinion.

If you're going to continue looking at it please at least pull the oil cap off and shine a light down the oil fill and see if it's sludged inside.
 

·
Registered
'21 Forte FE 6-Speed
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
That price is pure insanity. Steer clear of that car and find one with a clean title. Even if it was repaired properly, that’s a lot of money for an old, base model, salvage car with some miles on it
 

·
Registered
2022 gt2
Joined
·
547 Posts
Please don’t buy a salvage title unless you know 100% of why and when and how .... I am a structural tech and within the last 20 years I have never seen even one salvage title with structural damage that was repaired properly for a flip sale... if they say “salvage due to fender dent” or anything like that you need to run.
 

·
Registered
'21 Forte FE 6-Speed
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
This site should run an op-ed about what to look for when considering a salvage title, and when to walk away from one.
Basically unless there are pictures of every damn step and know for sure it was fixed properly then don’t buy it
 
  • Like
Reactions: mobileterminaluser

·
Registered
2022 Kia Forte LXS Fire Orange
Joined
·
419 Posts
Agree with the above posters. Walk away from this one.

However, being poor and desperate myself once, if you do feel you need to make a play on this car, consider:
- Pay a professional mechanic to do a pre-purchase inspection.
- If the mechanic thinks the car is serviceable, but has a lot of flaws you can live with, use whatever those flaws are to negotiate the price down. Don't be afraid to offer half or so of the asking price. Salvage title cars don't demand high prices. They molder waiting for a buyer. You have more negotiating power than you realize. Don't get your price, walk away, but make sure the seller has your telephone number. Might give you a call when he finally wants to dump the car.

But I don't think the car will get a passing grade from a mechanic, so keep looking. Don't know where you live, but there has been a lot of flooding in several areas of the nation. Flood damaged cars are tricky. They run for awhile but then the electronics corode and they can't be economically repaired. I bet a nickel this car is flood damaged.

Another idea, see if your town has an auto auction. You'll need a licensed dealer to actually buy the car there ( I'm unaware of any public auctions, but they could exist ). Pay the dealer $100 for his time to use his expert eye ( we hope ) to find you a good one. You should be paying no more than 60 percent of retail value for an auction car. I hope you know a trustworthy dealer on this idea. Ask family and friends for a recommendation. Remember, you have to approve the sale and that is tough as the auctions proceed very quickly. Don't get caught in a situation the dealer will buy the first thing that rolls on the stage just the get a quick Benjamin.

One approach at an auction is to look for a newer car with light body damage but sound mechanically. You may have a lot of competition for these cars as dealers buy them, fix them, and put them on their lots for sale. Be wary of this technique if your state has inspection laws.

You can also watch for estate auctions that have cars for sale. Generally, these cars are owned by older people who ( we hope ) took care of the car and didn't abuse it. You may end up with a granny-mobile in a funny color with an even funnier smell, but you could get reliable cheap wheels. Since you won't be able to test drive the car don't pay more than 50-60 percent of its retail value. Again, force yourself to be patient and don't pop on anything that isn't ( mostly ) rock solid. Make sure you see a clear title before the auction. No go if you don't see one. If the auctioneer can't show you one, the title doesn't exist. Likewise, if the auctioneer says the car has a dead battery, expect a blown engine. Remember, the auctioneer can say anything and cannot be held legally accountable.

One last avenue to find cheap but reliable wheels, post notices in senior citizen communities that you are a cash buyer for cars. A resident who owns a car but no longer drives may give you a call. Here, at least, you can drive the car to check it out. Use kbb.com and edmunds.com to determine the car's value.

Don't be discouraged and keep looking.

Good luck.
 

·
Registered
2022 Kia Forte LXS Fire Orange
Joined
·
419 Posts
Had another thought about the Forte for sale. Haven't run into this in decades, so it took a bit for my abused brain cells to kick in.

I'm assuming this car is for sale by an "individual" and you saw the car in something like a shopping mall parking lot with a For Sale By Owner sign on it

This would be a classic sign of Curbstoning. Here, a car dealer salesman ( usually ) personally buys a good looking but high mileage car and then turns back the odometer. He then slicks the car up to look like it really is a low mileage car.

Don't think you can turn back a digital odometer? It is actually easier than in the old mechanical odometer days. There are YouTube videos showing the procedure. A good scan tool should show the real mileage, which is why a pre-purchase inspection is a good idea. A Curbstoner will probably not submit to a pre-purchase inspection. He will probably get indignant that you made such a suggestion. Watch the Sheakesperian act he'll give you and learn, and then walk away.

Once, you could look at details of the car like wear on the pedals and carpet, and pitted paint behind the grill, for signs of high mileage, but I understand proficient Curbstoners can deal with these.
 

·
Registered
2022 Kia Forte LXS Fire Orange
Joined
·
419 Posts
Taking a closer look at the photos, this car has been really slicked out. Even the tires have a fresh coat of tire shine. Would an individual citizen car seller do this so proficiently?

I smell a Curbstoner.

I'd get third party verification on the mileage. Maybe CarFax can do this, as one poster said.

I could be wrong. Some people, like me, maintain their cars like a member of the family. If this is the case here, the seller should have maintenance documentation to show you I doubt he has such paperwork.
 

·
Registered
'21 Forte FE 6-Speed
Joined
·
1,231 Posts
Agree with the above posters. Walk away from this one.

However, being poor and desperate myself once, if you do feel you need to make a play on this car, consider:
  • Pay a professional mechanic to do a pre-purchase inspection.
  • If the mechanic thinks the car is serviceable, but has a lot of flaws you can live with, use whatever those flaws are to negotiate the price down. Don't be afraid to offer half or so of the asking price. Salvage title cars don't demand high prices. They molder waiting for a buyer. You have more negotiating power than you realize. Don't get your price, walk away, but make sure the seller has your telephone number. Might give you a call when he finally wants to dump the car.

But I don't think the car will get a passing grade from a mechanic, so keep looking. Don't know where you live, but there has been a lot of flooding in several areas of the nation. Flood damaged cars are tricky. They run for awhile but then the electronics corode and they can't be economically repaired. I bet a nickel this car is flood damaged.

Another idea, see if your town has an auto auction. You'll need a licensed dealer to actually buy the car there ( I'm unaware of any public auctions, but they could exist ). Pay the dealer $100 for his time to use his expert eye ( we hope ) to find you a good one. You should be paying no more than 60 percent of retail value for an auction car. I hope you know a trustworthy dealer on this idea. Ask family and friends for a recommendation. Remember, you have to approve the sale and that is tough as the auctions proceed very quickly. Don't get caught in a situation the dealer will buy the first thing that rolls on the stage just the get a quick Benjamin.

One approach at an auction is to look for a newer car with light body damage but sound mechanically. You may have a lot of competition for these cars as dealers buy them, fix them, and put them on their lots for sale. Be wary of this technique if your state has inspection laws.

You can also watch for estate auctions that have cars for sale. Generally, these cars are owned by older people who ( we hope ) took care of the car and didn't abuse it. You may end up with a granny-mobile in a funny color with an even funnier smell, but you could get reliable cheap wheels. Since you won't be able to test drive the car don't pay more than 50-60 percent of its retail value. Again, force yourself to be patient and don't pop on anything that isn't ( mostly ) rock solid. Make sure you see a clear title before the auction. No go if you don't see one. If the auctioneer can't show you one, the title doesn't exist. Likewise, if the auctioneer says the car has a dead battery, expect a blown engine. Remember, the auctioneer can say anything and cannot be held legally accountable.

One last avenue to find cheap but reliable wheels, post notices in senior citizen communities that you are a cash buyer for cars. A resident who owns a car but no longer drives may give you a call. Here, at least, you can drive the car to check it out. Use kbb.com and edmunds.com to determine the car's value.

Don't be discouraged and keep looking.

Good luck.
For 7 grand it better be really nice with that age and mileage. I’ve bought much nicer newer cars for less. Even a half decent mechanic can miss big things on PPIs. Keep looking
 
  • Like
Reactions: mobileterminaluser

·
Registered
2011 Kia Forte5 EX
Joined
·
108 Posts
Even in perfect condition and low miles the price is way too high. KBB on a "Good" quality vehicle of this trim is only $5000 private party. This one would be classed in poor condition in my book before the salvage title. I still say I wouldn't pay more than $1500 and that's after it passes an inspection. The bad paint damage to the roof and hood is one thing but I've also just noticed there's either a big dent in the trunk or something really weird with the photo.

100% walk away from this vehicle. Fortes are great but not this one.
 

·
Registered
2022 gt2
Joined
·
547 Posts
Police car auctions were popular where I lived in the Bay Area California.

Also the side streets around your local high schools on the weekends should have cars for sale too.
Bay Area San Bruno In 1999 I bought a 1990 5.0 convertible 5 speed from an impound for..... get ready .... $300. That’s not a typo. It was hit front and rear moderate hit in front and major in rear.. the only reason I got the car was because of my dads connections with the owner of the yard.... so I had to jump through the California salvage certification hoops and just to find it had a Colorado salvage certificate from a previous accident... repaired the car for about 3k in parts and my own labor, one of the best cars I ever owned ! When it came time to move on I sold the car knowing it was going to be parted out... I couldn’t sell it to anyone with a clear conscience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,521 Posts
Had another thought about the Forte for sale. Haven't run into this in decades, so it took a bit for my abused brain cells to kick in.

I'm assuming this car is for sale by an "individual" and you saw the car in something like a shopping mall parking lot with a For Sale By Owner sign on it

This would be a classic sign of Curbstoning. Here, a car dealer salesman ( usually ) personally buys a good looking but high mileage car and then turns back the odometer. He then slicks the car up to look like it really is a low mileage car.

Don't think you can turn back a digital odometer? It is actually easier than in the old mechanical odometer days. There are YouTube videos showing the procedure. A good scan tool should show the real mileage, which is why a pre-purchase inspection is a good idea. A Curbstoner will probably not submit to a pre-purchase inspection. He will probably get indignant that you made such a suggestion. Watch the Sheakesperian act he'll give you and learn, and then walk away.

Once, you could look at details of the car like wear on the pedals and carpet, and pitted paint behind the grill, for signs of high mileage, but I understand proficient Curbstoners can deal with these.
You can turn back digital odometers just need the software & connections. The needed parts to alter digital odometers can be bought on Ebay/Amazon.

The cluster gauges can be exchanged with lower mileage cluster gauges.

I don't know if digital odometer hacks are on video/YouTube.

In my younger yrs, we used to alter digital odometers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,521 Posts
Have the vehicle driven & inspected at your local Kia/Hyundai dealership.

You'd be surprised on how quickly they'll get offended & angry of such unmitigated gall & audacity from some ahole off the street.

My friend that I bought my 2010 SX wanted $5,000. I drove it to the local Kia/hyundai dealership & knocked off $2,000.00. I did the repairs myself.

A yr ago, wife bought a 2007 Toyota Scion TC. He didn't tell us if was a salvaged/rebuilt title till she handed him in cash $1,500.00.

Ended costing another $2,00.00 to fix/repair. 3 months of straight work. I 75% stripped the entire scion apart. I left the engine & transmission in. The wanna be didn't know what they were doing, half assed wiring/repairs. Connections. The engine & trans fluids/repairs 🤬🤬🤬🤬 that the local pull apart employees know me by 1st name basis.

Stay away from salvaged/rebuilt vehicles unless you have the money, tools, garage/facilities. Sellers of these vehicles aren't honest & just want the vehicle gone & stick the customer with way over asking price than what it's worth.

After the wrench time, runs great. No leaks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,521 Posts
Don't know what the rules are for typing another car site. If anyone is interested in looking a the few pics of the repairs to the Scion. Yoursciontc.com, mobileterminaluser, new scion tc owner post.

Btw, I drive the scion in limp mode at 25mph max speed. From Beeville to Corpus Christi.

Towing was a no. Flatbed towing at the time would've been $500. & we don't have a trailer & towing it with the Jeep no.
 

·
Registered
2022 Forte GT2
Joined
·
123 Posts
Don't know what the rules are for typing another car site. If anyone is interested in looking a the few pics of the repairs to the Scion. Yoursciontc.com, mobileterminaluser, new scion tc owner post.

Btw, I drive the scion in limp mode at 25mph max speed. From Beeville to Corpus Christi.

Towing was a no. Flatbed towing at the time would've been $500. & we don't have a trailer & towing it with the Jeep no.
Can you link? Would love to see the pics. I traded in a 2006 XB to purchase the Forte.
 
1 - 20 of 28 Posts
Top