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I am looking at a '12 rav4 4cyl sport that has 8,300 miles (car fax) asking $15,000. Carfax is clean. Will look at soon, if it is still there.

Only worries I have it could be flood car. Not sure what to look for here other than water mark stained, behind the rug, in trunk and under hood.

I intend to look at wear on the rug and pedals to match the low miles.

Will drive it and listen for noise from the transmission. I hope I can take it through all the gears.

Any other thoughts? Thanks.
 

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Call corporate Toyota and run the VIN to see what kind of history might be available.

Also, check the storage cavity under the rear floor for water marks as well.

Generally, if it sounds too good to be true, it is. Then again, generalizations are just that... generally true.
 
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Check the fuel door release lever--it's one of the first interior spots to rust:

 

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The mileage seems too low for a 6 year old car. Ask for a Carfax or Carproof to check if it was in an accident and maintenance done on it. Check the interior seats and pedals for wear. See if there is any records that show any maintenance was done on this car which indicates the mileage. The speedometer can be replaced easily so you be aware of that.
 

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I don't know if replacing the speedometer can change the displayed mileage. That data might be in ROM.

I identified a flood car once by the smell, but it was in the sun festering.
 

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Check the fuel door release lever--it's one of the first interior spots to rust:

This kind of rust spot might just be because of salt too in you live in the rust belt.
Even my seat attachments for the legs are rusted since I got the RAV at 20K miles :(
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Call corporate Toyota and run the VIN to see what kind of history might be available.

Also, check the storage cavity under the rear floor for water marks as well.

Generally, if it sounds too good to be true, it is. Then again, generalizations are just that... generally true.
Actually I created an account and used the vin to get the report. See I attached it.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The mileage seems too low for a 6 year old car. Ask for a Carfax or Carproof to check if it was in an accident and maintenance done on it. Check the interior seats and pedals for wear. See if there is any records that show any maintenance was done on this car which indicates the mileage. The speedometer can be replaced easily so you be aware of that.
I got the carfax and it looks clean. Take a look. I added it. I will look for gaps in the panels to see if it was in an accident.

I don't know if replacing the speedometer can change the displayed mileage. That data might be in ROM.

Good point, someone told me that it is possible to change the ROM. I would not be able to figure that out.

I will look under the car at the boots, and bushings for wear. I would even rock the links for plays. This should give me more info of driven mileage.

I identified a flood car once by the smell, but it was in the sun festering.
Smell for sure. If it smells like wet rug i will run.
 

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I do not see the Carfax report as an attachment.

However, I did look over the Toyota Service Report, and it looks really weird. They did the first 5K oil change at only 1800 miles, and then the 10K oil change only 6 months later with not many additional miles.

Is this car at a dealer, or private sale? If private, I would try really hard to get a viable explanation for the low mileage. The service report, though, does support the low mileage number to a certain degree, but there is not data since 2014 to demonstrate what's been happening the last couple of years.

It could be either a cherry or a lemon... hands-on and in person inspection should help confirm either.
 
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I don't know if replacing the speedometer can change the displayed mileage. That data might be in ROM.
I recall a thread where someone changed his speedo cluster because it was not working. He said the used speedo mileage was different than his old one and that he kept his original one in case he had to sell his car. Perhaps someone who has swap one can shed more light to this to be sure.
 

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I do not see the Carfax report as an attachment.

However, I did look over the Toyota Service Report, and it looks really weird. They did the first 5K oil change at only 1800 miles, and then the 10K oil change only 6 months later with not many additional miles.

Is this car at a dealer, or private sale? If private, I would try really hard to get a viable explanation for the low mileage.
It could very well have been owned by an elderly person who didn't drive much.
 

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I do not see the Carfax report as an attachment.

However, I did look over the Toyota Service Report, and it looks really weird. They did the first 5K oil change at only 1800 miles, and then the 10K oil change only 6 months later with not many additional miles.

Is this car at a dealer, or private sale? If private, I would try really hard to get a viable explanation for the low mileage. The service report, though, does support the low mileage number to a certain degree, but there is not data since 2014 to demonstrate what's been happening the last couple of years.

It could be either a cherry or a lemon... hands-on and in person inspection should help confirm either.
Yeah, that got me thinking too. But the logged mileage is consistent. I thought the dealer ripped off the owner. It is a private sale. The carfax has more info from 2014. I am gonna try add the carfax again.
 

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Is that a crazy good deal where you are? Private party as opposed to a dealer I'm guessing since you had to check the carfax?

If the blue book numbers I'm looking up are even in the ballpark then I wouldn't be overly suspicious unless part of the story just doesn't add up. (Admittedly, the figures I'm looking up could be way off). But I don't think I would be super suspicious at that price. It is VERY low mileage which is odd but not unheard of. I bought a 94 Mazda protege circa 2008 with only 30K miles. Older lady owned it and never left the house.

Not saying it's not a good deal, seems to be a fair to good deal based on what I can find though. Unless theres evidence of damage or something on the carfax, short of a pre purchase inspection there's not much more you can go off of. I wouldn't hesitate to purchase it if an inspection turned out fine. Most shops will inspect vehicles for pretty cheap.
 

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In addition to gaps, check the door jams, if it's been repainted you can often tell by comparing the exterior panel to the inside of the door. Also I think Toyota puts VIN numbers inside every door (at least mine is that way) so you can check and make sure those match up.
 

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I just read the Carfax. Looks like it may indeed been driven by an elderly person. The mileage seems to validate that it was lightly driven all the way to Sep 2016 at 8232 miles. The car is almost new condition barely driven.
I recommend you buy this since it is rare to find anything this low in mileage. It should last a very long time indeed.
 

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I just read the Carfax. Looks like it may indeed been driven by an elderly person. The mileage seems to validate that it was lightly driven all the way to Sep 2016 at 8232 miles. The car is almost new condition barely driven.
I recommend you buy this since it is rare to find anything this low in mileage. It should last a very long time indeed.
I am looking for a car that I will keep for a long time. I will go with payment in hand for the inspection, and using all the advise given to me here I will get it if it is available and check out. Thank you. Definitely will post back either way.
 

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I am looking for a car that I will keep for a long time. I will go with payment in hand for the inspection, and using all the advise given to me here I will get it if it is available and check out. Thank you. Definitely will post back either way.
Good deals don't last so if you delay it will be gone. Sadly this happened to me.
 

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It could very well have been owned by an elderly person who didn't drive much.
That would be me. I have a 2011 bought new and it has 7,300 miles on it. The dealer reminds me when I come in that there is one other customer with an older car with lower mileage - and a list of prospective buyers.
 
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