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August 13, 2015

Do Lemon Laws Apply to Used Cars in Texas?

You’ve no doubt heard about so-called “lemon laws.” These are regulations that protect new car buyers (or people who lease new cars) should the vehicle develop a condition or defect that, according to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles “substantially impairs the motor vehicle’s use, market value or safety.”

If you buy a new car that develops these types of issues, you must allow the car’s manufacturer to make a “reasonable opportunity” to repair the problems. If the manufacturer can’t do so, you can then file a complaint for relief under Texas’ lemon law.

Lemons are so bright, cheerful and lovely…unless your lemon happens to be the car you just bought.

But what if you bought a used car that develops trouble? You still may be covered under Texas’ lemon law.

Remember: you may be covered.  There’s no guarantee.

The Texas DMV says that a used car may be covered under the so-called lemon law so long as your used car is “still covered by the manufacturer’s original warranty (not an extended service contract).” You also may have a case if the problem began while under warranty, you reported it to the used car dealer you bought it from while the car was still under manufacturer’s warranty and it continues to be a problem.

Note: you may be able to get financial assistance to repair the warranty-related problem, not financial relief if the warranty-related problem can’t be resolved.

What does this mean to you, a used car buyer? It means you must understand that you’re are buying a used car, which almost by its very definition could mean it will have some issues because it isn’t new.

So buy carefully. Study Consumer Reports to see which used cars (year, makes and models) have held up well over the years. If buying a used car from a private party, never take the individual’s word about the car’s history or condition; always get a vehicle history report (from CarFax, for example) and have the car inspected by your own mechanic.

The same caution applies to a used car dealer, although many do offer their own warranties on the cars they sell. Most used car dealers also inspect each car as it comes in and make repairs and replace parts as needed. Still, do your own due diligence.

All cars sold here at PAACO come with a six-month/6,000-mile warranty (Note: this is not a manufacturer’s warranty and while some of our cars may still be covered under all or part of  a manufacturer’s warranty, we can’t guarantee that the used car you purchase will still be covered.)  We also inspect and make needed repairs to all used cars we sell

We’ve been helping Dallas-area residents find great used cars for more than two decades. Contact us at 877-810-4555 for more information on our used car sales and financing services.

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