What To Do If A Dealer Sells You A Bad Used Car?

What to do if a dealer sells you a bad used car? You can want a refund or negotiate with the dealer.

Well, there are several steps you can take if the car dealer provides you with a bad, defeated used car. Or you didn’t find the properties that the dealer claimed during the agreement.

Several conditions may arise, so you need to take the appropriate action based on your problem types and overall situations.

To solve this type of situation, we have come here to save you by revealing 3 effective ways to deal with the dealer trying to deceive you by selling bad used cars.

Without any further delay, let’s get started.

So, What To Do If A Dealer Sells You A Bad Used Car?

When it comes to used cars, there’s always a risk that you might end up buying one that’s not in good condition. If you buy a used car from a dealer and later realize that it’s not in good shape, you should go for immediate action before it’s too late. Here we are going to discuss 3 ways such as –

1. Talk To The Dealer

Initially, the best option is usually to try to negotiate with the dealer. You may be able to get them to refund some of your money or at least fix the car for free. If the dealer did this unwillingly, he would solve the problem.

On the contrary, if the dealer refuses to cooperate, your next step would be to contact your state’s attorney general’s office or consumer protection agency.

2. Contact Your State’s Attorney General’s Office

If the dealer refuses to negotiate or refund, you should contact your state’s attorney general’s office. They may help you resolve the issue or may refer you to another organization that can assist you. Besides, you can also file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau or contact an attorney.

If you ask, what happens if a dealer sells me a stolen car? Then the answer will be the same, you should consult and take help from the law.

So far, taking legal action may be the best option if the dealer has caused financial harm or has not provided a refund for the car.

3. Use Lemon Law

The final way is using the Lemon Law. When you buy a used car, you expect it to be reliable and in good condition. However, sometimes dealers can sell you a lemon which means a car that’s not in good condition and is full of problems. If this happens to you?

The Lemon Law is basically some set of laws that protect consumers against defective cars. If your car has serious problems and the dealer won’t fix them, the lemon law may help you get a refund or a new car.

You can learn more about the Florida Lemon law and how to take advantage of it.

For this, you first need to understand your state’s laws. Every state has its laws, so make sure you know what they are. Again, some states don’t have a Lemon Law for used cars.

In the United States, you can claim Lemon Law for used cars only in 7 states such as New Mexico, California, Minnesota, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Massachusetts.

Also, there is another condition too. If the dealer provides a warranty during the purchase, you can claim under this law in only 3 states(California, New York, and Minnesota).

If you can fulfill the conditions of your state, then you will get a refund for the car. To learn more about your state’s lemon law, you can find this information on your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles official site or by contacting your state legislator.

Limitations During These Processes

Though you are the victim if the dealer sells a bad used car to you, you may have faced several constraints when claiming for refund or return. For one, the car must have been bought and registered in the USA.

Another biggest limitation to returning a bad used car is the time it takes to process the return. In most cases, you’ll have to wait for 2 weeks to 1 month before the process is completed. That means if you buy a used car and realize it’s not what the deal claims, you’ll be stuck with it for at least 2 weeks.

Another limitation is that not all states will either accept returns or refund processes on used cars. This is called the “Cooling off” period. This time period varies from region to region but is typically around 72 hours or 3 days. This allows buyers time to test drive the car and decide if it’s right for them. If they decide it’s not, they can return it within that time frame and receive a full refund. In case, you find the car is damaged or defective after 3 days and claim, it won’t proceed at all.

The final limitation is related to the Lemon Law. This law is not the same for all states. If your state doesn’t have a Lemon Law for used bad cars, then your investment will go in vain surely.

So, How To Get Rid Of These Problems?

To do away with such situations, you should check the car properly before making a purchase decision. Also, try to buy from an authorized dealer with a warranty and agreements.

And, after buying, test the car within 72 hours, if any problem occurs during this time, you can claim to recoup under the cooling-off period easily.

In addition, sometimes an astute car dealer may threaten you if you ask for a refund. In such a situation, you should inform the legal authorities immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I Sue A Car Dealership For Selling A Bad Car?

If you bought a car from a dealership and it turned out to be a lemon, you can sue the dealership. This is because car manufacturers are required by law to provide their cars with a certain level of quality. If the car you bought from the dealership does not meet this quality standard, you can file a lawsuit against the dealership.

Can You Return A Used Car If It Has Problems?

In most cases, no, because most used cars are sold “As is”. This means that the dealer is not responsible for any problems the car has. You should always do a test drive before buying a used car to make sure it runs well. If there are any issues with the car after your purchase, you will need to take it to a mechanic.

What Do You Do If You Get Ripped Off At A Car Dealership?

If you’re ripped off at a car dealership, you can take legal action. You can sue the dealership for misrepresentation, fraud, or breach of contract. Also, you may be able to get your money back or receive additional damages.
Additionally, you can contact an attorney or the Federal Trade Commission or FTC to discuss your case and check out what options are available to you.

Can You Sue A Car Dealership For Selling A Bad Used Car In Florida?

Yes, you can. The car may have been sold “As is”, but if it was not properly inspected or there were undisclosed problems, the buyer may have a case. Also, you can call the Consumer Services Division using their hotline number: 1-800-HELP FLA (1-800-435-7352).

Can I Return A Used Car Within 30 Days In Ontario?

No. In Ontario, the law states that a consumer cannot return a used car within 30 days of the purchase. There are no periods permitting for “Cooling off” in the automobile- dealership business for 3 days. Thus, when you sign a deal, it will be final; except if the vehicle seller made sure to furnish promises.


In summary, if you are ever unfortunate enough to buy a bad used car from a dealer, there are some steps that you can take to get your money back or at least get the car fixed. Here, we have tried to sum up these processes.

Hopefully, you can understand what to do if a dealer sells you a bad used car and will be able to take the necessary steps.

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James Noah

Ah! Driving your King has no twist when you have zero knowledge! Yes, Noah is here with his core experiences about trucks, cars, suvs and atvs. Working as a cheif editor for Automasterx to make you satisfied with solid data driven post.

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