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A wise consumer will buy a used car with care. He will learn as much as is possible about the type of car he is seeking by talking to owners, reading consumer magazines and talking to his mechanic. A test drive is a must when purchasing a used car. Also, have an independent mechanic do a complete inspection before you purchase. Shop around for the best credit and always check the reputation of the dealer with the BBB. Texas car dealers are not required to provide warranties on used cars. Federal law, however, requires dealers to display window stickers on used cars that tell whether a warranty is included. If the used car comes with a warranty, the sticker must list exactly what is covered and for how long. The sticker actually becomes part of the sales contract. If the sticker shows that the car is being sold 'AS IS', the customer should realize that there is NO warranty protection. Once the consumer drives the car off the lot, all problems, if any, are the purchaser's responsibility. The customer should get all promises and claims in writing. When purchasing a used car from an individual, a consumer must watch out for special problems. Make sure the seller has the title for the vehicle. As with a dealer, make sure claims are in writing, however, the warranty sticker is not required, and almost always, individual sales are sold under the AS IS condition. Lastly, watch out for odometer rollbacks. Check the safety inspection sticker to verify the odometer reading. If you suspect an odometer rollback, you should call the Texas Attorney General's office in Lubbock at 806-747-5238. If you wish to receive a copy of the Bureau's pamphlet Tips On... Buying a Used Car, send us an e-mail at or fax us at 806-744-9748 with your request.

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