what to look for in buying used moped...

I am going to look at a used moped tomorrow - it is not running - and I would like to know what sort of stuff to look for. I know that compression is important but how does one check that in a moped that is not running.

I will be heading out to look at the thing tomorrow after work so this came up rather suddenly. Any suggestions are welcomed!



Re: what to look for in buying used moped...

gimmyjimmy /

take the gas cap off and look for rust in tank, that could cause it not to start,(clogged lines and carb)

crank the pedals and see if rear wheel spins when starter clutch is engaged, it should.

stand in front of bike and check for straight alignnment of front end and frame

brake levers work smooth?

any puddles under bike?

These are only a few, I'm sure you'll get more advice on this post, everyone is always shopping around for a ped, good luck.

Re: what to look for in buying used moped...


I can't really advise on how to get a good feel for a non-running ped but when I bought my Puch it had 5 thousand miles on it and had not been ridden for about 12 years. The piston was frozen in the cylinder, the carb was corroded shut and full of dirt, varnish and rust, both chains were petrified in their resting place, the tires were flat and the gas tank was full of rust and gummy residue. After a week of TLC and lots of penetrating oil the bike started after just a few trys. It cruises at 25 with no problem and I never replaced a part except for tires and a spark plug.

I think it helps that this was a ped from a good manufacture.

If it looks like it's all together there is a good chance it will be able to be revived but you have to be willing to fix it or have the money to pay some one to do so. If I had to pay someone to fix mine it would have cost many hundreds of dollars in labor alone! I was willing to gamble the $150.00 dollars purchase price because it looked like no one had butchered the bike. It's good to ask questions like, Do you know if the motor is siezed? Why are you selling it? Did it run up until the time you parked it? Do you know anything else that is wrong with it ?

With the ped on it's stand see if you can pedal the bike with and without the motor engaged (I have a lever on my Puch that will engage the motor) That may let you know if the piston is free in the cylinder. If you can't move the piston it is either corroded from sitting or seized from lack of lubrication.

Good luck and don't be afraid to offer them less than half of what they are asking, especially since it's not running.

lowball/hardball all the way

In my opinion a non-runner puts you in the drivers seat for negotiations and you shouldn't pay over $100 for it (if it looks nice and you know how to fix them).

$50 if you don't or it doesn't look real nice

the good news is they USUALLY aren't expensive to fix.

play hardball with them (on price) !!

9 out of 10 potential buyers won't buy a non-runner

use that to your advantage

If you get it for $50 you won't feel bad if you have to put $100 into it.

Testing compression in a crude way can be done with the "finger over the sparkplug hole" like it describes in my "How to fix Yopur Ped" guide under 'resources/articles'

Re: what to look for in buying used moped...

Thanks for all the great advice...will keep it in mind when I go to look at the ped this evening.

Wish me luck...especially since I am going to try and stuff in the back of a station wagon to get it home!!!

Best regards,



gimmyjimmy /

howdit go?

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