Buying a moped - what to look for

Morgan Patterson /

Hi everyone,

I've never had a moped before, but am going to look at one tommorow. Any tips as to what to look for (I'm relatively mechanically inclined, so I think I should be able to figure out if the thing runs decently, but I'm looking for tips on little things that I might not think of (is there anything that people out there wish that they had checked before they purchased their 'peds?))? Thanks


Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

Ron Brown /


If you are mechanically inclined you allready know to check general condition, mileage, bearings, tires, wheels and frame are straight, etc.

Try posting the make and model, you may get some specific things to check.


Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

Hellcat Carrie /

Suspension. I had no idea how important this was until my little fanny was hurting.

Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

Chris Robertson /

If you are buying a moped that doesn't run, make sure there is decent compression by pedaling it on the stand (the engine should give you some good resistance).

Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

Check on the moped laws in your state. Where I am, (New York), the DMV calls some of them class A and some class B. When I bought my Avanti Autopower I was not aware of this and found out it's a class A and has to be inspected and you need a motorcycle license to ride it. Lucky for me I have the license but many fine folks could be caught with their pants down, so to speak.

Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

Check for missing parts. I bought a Honda Spree under the premise that all it needed was the rust in the gas tank removed and some general mantenance. Foolish me, I didn't check the carburetor. There was an adjustment screw missing that cost $60 to get replaced. It's really not one I'm familiar with either. Most of the lawn mowers I've owned only had 2 but the moped had 3. Be careful about the carb. Usually, they cost more than the moped to be replaced.

Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

dont' worry about carburetors ... they cost less than $100. so you should be ok if there is anything wrong.

what you want a moped to have at minimum is:

- non-seized engine (but depending on how it's seized, you can easily fix that)

- a good cylinder (these are expensive to replace, whereas rings/piston are not)

- decent carburetor

- exhaust

- working clutch on engine

- good magneto/coil, etc.

everything else is secondary. you can get headlights and tailights later. side panels and other aesthetic parts. no chain on the moped? order one (they're not expensive). no tires (or flat ones)? ditto on replacement.

what you don't want is a pretty looking moped that has a shit engine on it. engines are hard to come by and expensive.

Re: Buying a moped - what to look for

Hi,Morgan! I'm not too desperate for a used `ped ,so I can afford to be picky.This will usually save you some unexpected repairs and that's what we're after,right? I always recommend to people that ask me about checking out a used car or anything with an engine, that they don't buy it unless they are allowed to take a good long drive on it.That's when you'll learn what condition the vehicle is really in.Thick ,cold lubricants can hide a multitude of problems and noises that become apparent with full throttle,start and stop,hot engine and tranny conditions.And whatever you do, check the brakes for stopping power before you speed up.Now if you're desperate and are buying ultra cheap,without the bike running,it's a gamble and I'd recommend taking a very knowledgable person with you,even if you have to pay him a little to help you.He or she could save you a lot more down the road.See you later!

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