20 Biggest Mistakes Made When Buying A Motorcoach

  1. Never buy a bus according to the age buy according to the condition (unless you are looking for certain options that may not be offered until a certain year) Newer is not always better!
  2. No two buses are alike even if they are the same make,year and model something is always different.
  3. Just because it is a “southern or west coast bus” doesn’t mean it is rust free. Remember all buses will have some superficial rusting in places.These coaches run up north and in the snow also!
  4. When looking at a bus, look from the bottom up, you would not build a house on a shaky foundation neither would you want to build much less ride on a rusted out frame.All buses can rust just not the Eagle Coaches,however they do have a tendency to rust more and with this in mine you have to look at all coaches for the rust factor. Depending on how the coach was maintained can determine how bad the rust factor is. Also ask if any rust problems were ever repaired and treated, if so where on the coach and when was this done. Your main concern is the main frame section of the bus, this is where you can get into a lot of money. Rust is like cancer it spreads so be careful!
  5. Always ask to see if records are available on the coach, they would include any minor or major repair. If records are not available ask if you can talk to the mechanic, shop Forman or the primary driver of the coach.
  6. Ask the mileage on the engine and the transmission depending on the age most of the coaches are high in mileage but they are built to go long miles if they are properly maintained.
  7. Do not rely on the odometer to give you the actual mileage. Odometers on buses are prone to break, check and see when and if a hubometer was installed and what that mileage is.
  8. After checking the frame and drive train out then focus on the cosmetics such as body damage, paint condition, interior condition, it is always easier to paint, change seat covers or redo the carpets then say rebuild an engine or do extensive frame work. Remember a bad paint job never left anyone on the side of the road!!
  9. When looking for an Eagle Coach remember that the majority of them were owned and run by what was then Trailways later bought by Greyhound in 1990. Eagle Coach Company built their last bus in 1997. Parts are still available at certain places through-out the country.
  10. When looking for an MCI Coach remember that the majority of these coaches were owned and operated by Greyhound. These coaches are still being produced to date.
  11. If you find a coach that has never been a Trailways or Greyhound you normally get a bus that has less total coach miles and normally less wear and tear. Remember just because it was a private owned bus does not mean that it was kept up and that it is better but these coaches are not that plentiful.
  12. Normally warranties on used coaches are not offered, if one is ask if it is a nationwide warranty or do you have to come back to their establishment for repairs.
  13. Engine warranties are tricky. Again find out the particulars of the warranty most require a transfer fee when you buy the bus. You also should find out if the proper maintenance files are up-to-date, the warranties will require that certain types of oil are being used and that you have kept the bus on their required maintenance schedule. Not all warranties are what you may think they are.
  14. After you have found the bus you think you like if you have any doubts as to some of the information given to relating to the mechanical end of the coach ask if you can get a non-biased opinion from another mechanic that is not on their “payroll”. We always encourage our buyers to feel free to bring their own mechanics to check out the buses that we sell. As with our company we have mechanics that do work for us that are not on our payroll, we offer their services to the buyer at the buyers expense to check out the bus.
  15. If you do not have all of the monies to buy the coach and if you have not found out by now when you go to your local bank for the money that you know you qualify for most of the time they will look at you like you’ve lost you mind (especially if it is 15 years or older in age). Banks do not know how to put a value on buses. We have several banking institutions that offer financing, but be ready for some short terms in the time they expect you to pay it back.
  16. If you are buying a coach for charter use you are required to have at least Five Million in coverage, for private use it can vary with the age of the coach, cost of the coach and the replacement value that is put on it.
  17. Just because a bus is titled a 1995 or any other year it does not mean that the MSO (manufactures statement of origin) is the same year. Let me explain; In some states particularly in Virginia and Kentucky you can take an older coach and “reman” it. In accordance with their state dot specs and after, specific items and changes are done a “new” title is issued in the year that the “reman” is completed this is now when the bus is given a new title and year model. As long as the seller is telling you that the 1995 Eagle that you are purchasing has an actual frame date of say 1972 or 1985 then everything is alright. We have seen and talked to people that thought that the 1995 was an actual 95 model! We will sell a “remand” bus but we are quick to point out the history of the coach as we do in all of our other coaches. I have only seen Eagle coaches with remand titles
  18. Always ask the reason the bus is being sold. You do not want to buy someone else’s problem. Many times the person or company may be upgrading or going out of business, this is where someone like us can help you.
  19. There are times when working with a client they may have found a coach that they think may be better or simply may have a lower price than ours. We are always willing to check out the coach or company that they are talking to,( remember we will buy and sell more coaches in one month than most of our clients will buy in a lifetime) to see if the company is reliable and trust-worthy and to see if the coach is what they expect.
  20. Last but not least always deal with someone that can give you references. If you are not comfortable with who you are dealing with go somewhere else! Many of our friends today started off as clients.It is our philosophy here at Flagship Inc. that the bus will sell itself, that’s the reason our motto is YOUR GUIDE TO THE RIGHT RIDE!