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In Virginia, I found a used 2011 Kia Soul with 217,500 on the odometer. The current owner bought it in May of 2020 when it had 187,000 miles. His ownership is less than three years, which was one red flag.

On January 5th, 2023, he replaced all 4 tires, 4 rotors, brake pads, and timing belt. The car still needs struts, rear hatch lifters, and good detailing. My second red flag was with all of the money he just put in it; he is selling it now. My third red flag is that he dropped the price from $4000 to $2800.

So I drove it today. Everything is good. Good power, acceleration, and no engine lights. But then he told me there was rust on the gas tank, and one mechanic recommended replacing the gas tank. The fourth red flag just popped.

My next question was where was the car from before he bought it? He didn't know.
I asked if the tank was leaking. He said no, but there was a lot of rust on it and he showed me a picture. The rust was crunchy and flakey looking (having lived in OH and PA, I'm used to seeing rusty cars from road salt). Virginia does not use road salt, and cars that have been in state all of their lives never develop cancerous body rot out.

So before we parted, I took a photo of the VIN. Came home and paid for a Carfax report. This car lived in New York for from 2011-2016, then Maryland, then Delaware, and now Virginia. Its first 9 years and 187,000 miles were in road salt states.

I gently told the seller that I'm afraid of buying any car that was in the rustbelt for that long. Without another word, the seller dropped the price to $2500, giving back $300 for a gas tank.

While that gesture sure is nice and I would not refuse it, I'm still afraid of rust/rot that might be lurking.

So my question to the most knowledgable of Kia Soul owners, mechanics, and backyard mechanics is this.... is the rusty seam on the gas tank the telltale sign of much deeper problems yet to come with this particular car?

Thanks!
George
 

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I think that Soul has lived a long life but is ready to go towards the light. The cheap price just means you'll be getting a good deal on somebody else's headache. I'd keep looking.
 

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In Virginia, I found a used 2011 Kia Soul with 217,500 on the odometer. The current owner bought it in May of 2020 when it had 187,000 miles. His ownership is less than three years, which was one red flag.

On January 5th, 2023, he replaced all 4 tires, 4 rotors, brake pads, and timing belt. The car still needs struts, rear hatch lifters, and good detailing. My second red flag was with all of the money he just put in it; he is selling it now. My third red flag is that he dropped the price from $4000 to $2800.

So I drove it today. Everything is good. Good power, acceleration, and no engine lights. But then he told me there was rust on the gas tank, and one mechanic recommended replacing the gas tank. The fourth red flag just popped.

My next question was where was the car from before he bought it? He didn't know.
I asked if the tank was leaking. He said no, but there was a lot of rust on it and he showed me a picture. The rust was crunchy and flakey looking (having lived in OH and PA, I'm used to seeing rusty cars from road salt). Virginia does not use road salt, and cars that have been in state all of their lives never develop cancerous body rot out.

So before we parted, I took a photo of the VIN. Came home and paid for a Carfax report. This car lived in New York for from 2011-2016, then Maryland, then Delaware, and now Virginia. Its first 9 years and 187,000 miles were in road salt states.

I gently told the seller that I'm afraid of buying any car that was in the rustbelt for that long. Without another word, the seller dropped the price to $2500, giving back $300 for a gas tank.

While that gesture sure is nice and I would not refuse it, I'm still afraid of rust/rot that might be lurking.

So my question to the most knowledgable of Kia Soul owners, mechanics, and backyard mechanics is this.... is the rusty seam on the gas tank the telltale sign of much deeper problems yet to come with this particular car?

Thanks!
George
In Virginia, I found a used 2011 Kia Soul with 217,500 on the odometer. The current owner bought it in May of 2020 when it had 187,000 miles. His ownership is less than three years, which was one red flag.

On January 5th, 2023, he replaced all 4 tires, 4 rotors, brake pads, and timing belt. The car still needs struts, rear hatch lifters, and good detailing. My second red flag was with all of the money he just put in it; he is selling it now. My third red flag is that he dropped the price from $4000 to $2800.

So I drove it today. Everything is good. Good power, acceleration, and no engine lights. But then he told me there was rust on the gas tank, and one mechanic recommended replacing the gas tank. The fourth red flag just popped.

My next question was where was the car from before he bought it? He didn't know.
I asked if the tank was leaking. He said no, but there was a lot of rust on it and he showed me a picture. The rust was crunchy and flakey looking (having lived in OH and PA, I'm used to seeing rusty cars from road salt). Virginia does not use road salt, and cars that have been in state all of their lives never develop cancerous body rot out.

So before we parted, I took a photo of the VIN. Came home and paid for a Carfax report. This car lived in New York for from 2011-2016, then Maryland, then Delaware, and now Virginia. Its first 9 years and 187,000 miles were in road salt states.

I gently told the seller that I'm afraid of buying any car that was in the rustbelt for that long. Without another word, the seller dropped the price to $2500, giving back $300 for a gas tank.

While that gesture sure is nice and I would not refuse it, I'm still afraid of rust/rot that might be lurking.

So my question to the most knowledgable of Kia Soul owners, mechanics, and backyard mechanics is this.... is the rusty seam on the gas tank the telltale sign of much deeper problems yet to come with this particular car?

Thanks!
George
Even though the Kia Soul is usually a fun, cheap, economy car, There are just too many red flags here for my liking. If you want a Kia Soul, I would keep searching.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
In Virginia, I found a used 2011 Kia Soul with 217,500 on the odometer. The current owner bought it in May of 2020 when it had 187,000 miles. His ownership is less than three years, which was one red flag.

On January 5th, 2023, he replaced all 4 tires, 4 rotors, brake pads, and timing belt. The car still needs struts, rear hatch lifters, and good detailing. My second red flag was with all of the money he just put in it; he is selling it now. My third red flag is that he dropped the price from $4000 to $2800.

So I drove it today. Everything is good. Good power, acceleration, and no engine lights. But then he told me there was rust on the gas tank, and one mechanic recommended replacing the gas tank. The fourth red flag just popped.

My next question was where was the car from before he bought it? He didn't know.
I asked if the tank was leaking. He said no, but there was a lot of rust on it and he showed me a picture. The rust was crunchy and flakey looking (having lived in OH and PA, I'm used to seeing rusty cars from road salt). Virginia does not use road salt, and cars that have been in state all of their lives never develop cancerous body rot out.

So before we parted, I took a photo of the VIN. Came home and paid for a Carfax report. This car lived in New York for from 2011-2016, then Maryland, then Delaware, and now Virginia. Its first 9 years and 187,000 miles were in road salt states.

I gently told the seller that I'm afraid of buying any car that was in the rustbelt for that long. Without another word, the seller dropped the price to $2500, giving back $300 for a gas tank.

While that gesture sure is nice and I would not refuse it, I'm still afraid of rust/rot that might be lurking.

So my question to the most knowledgable of Kia Soul owners, mechanics, and backyard mechanics is this.... is the rusty seam on the gas tank the telltale sign of much deeper problems yet to come with this particular car?

Thanks!
George

Here are pictures of the underbody taken yesterday.
Most have already told me to runaway. But just look at these pictures. Would you all still tell me to runaway?



Automotive tire Bumper Asphalt Hood Gas

Photograph World Green Wall Flash photography

Water Flash photography Gesture Style Automotive tire

Wood Automotive tire Gas Beam Ceiling

Photograph White Hood Light Black

Tire Automotive tire Hood Wheel Tread

Black Automotive tire Font Art Wood

Black Tints and shades Wood Automotive exterior Ceiling

Automotive tire Tire Tread Hood Wheel
 

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If you are buying it for an everyday driver......no. Any vehicle with that many miles is going to need work. I personally would not want a vehicle from the rust belt. Plus too many red flags. If seller has a decent vehicle he's not going to drop the price that much. If you're determined to get it make a low ball offer . Me personally I wouldn't even consider it. But it's your money do what you think is right. You have doubts or you wouldn't be asking for advice. Go with your gut instinct. Best of luck.
 

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There, I changed my vote if it makes you feel better. I will admit that undercarriage doesn't seem to match your description in the first post.

Ultimately it is your money, and you should do what makes you sleep well at night 😁
 

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For $2500, go for it. Underbody looks good but some of that looks like fresh spray paint (on the gas tank??), but otherwise looks a lot better than underneath my rotting away 2011.
 

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That's under coating sprayed on the bottom. If you're considering buying it at least take a screw driver and poke around in various places on the bottom. Under coating is thick and can cover some serious rust. Some of it also looks fresh, is seller trying to hide something? Again.....run away.
 

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That's under coating sprayed on the bottom. If you're considering buying it at least take a screw driver and poke around in various places on the bottom. Under coating is thick and can cover some serious rust. Some of it also looks fresh, is seller trying to hide something? Again.....run away.
Seems like it’s just on the gas tank. I thought we had plastic gas tanks but I guess the early ones were metal. And he does mention the seller mentioned the gas tank rusting. Cross members, suspension and floor does not look recently “touched up” with the undercoating.

The screwdriver test is a good way to find hidden holes. I would do that, but I’m still in the for $2500, go for it camp.
 

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Still pondering the input. It seems like a good deal, but buying rust is no deal For anyone except the seller.
Pay a $100 or so (or whatever the going rate is in your location) and have it inspected by a mechanic.

Given the price drops the owner does seem to want to unload (I mean sell) it. Offer $1800, curious how they'd respond.
 
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