Let’s suppose that you’re very excited and you have decided that the van life is going to happen. Keep in mind that finding the right sprinter van is not at all an easy task. There are a lot of factors that need to be kept into consideration. So, it is highly suggested that you should never speed up the process when it comes to finding a sprinter van. Take your time, keep your needs and requirements in mind, and you will end up getting an amazing van that caters to all your desires.
Note: The Sprinter van rentals cost will vary according to the size and year of manufacturing of the van.
Below we have enlisted few of the most important checkpoints that you should follow when it comes to buying a sprinter van.
#1: Knowing the Weakness of The Van by Year
You need to keep in mind that not all of the sprinter vans are made equally. There are 3 major iterations.
The Original (1995 – 2006)
The sprinter vans in era is what gave them their longing reputation as workhorse and reliable vans that could even travel half a million mile when looked after well.
Curved Front Model (2006 – 2014)
This model was an update of the original model. It had better electronics and also a wide range of engine models 5 to be more precise. The model was available in two variants, 90 hps and 180 hps. The only drawback was the rusting and underpowered engines.
Angular Front Model (2014)
This was the best iteration of all. As this van was introduced with DPF, driving assistance with hill start assist and also crosswind assistance. What more? It has corrosion resistance as well.
#2: Keeping an Eye Out for Rust
It is a well understand thought that the sprinter vans always had a bad reputation for rust. Arguable a lot of this has been down to treatment as well. The sprinter van has been used by couriers and a lot of delivery companies. Since they are left wide open for a longer period of time in heavy rain and are often repaired.
You need to check under the vehicle at first. Most of the sprinter vans will have holes drilled for lining and lifting equipment. Yes, you need to check them as well.
Later on you need to check the suspension. The wishbone and the shocks too. You’ll get to know the difference between surface rust and core rust. After that you need to move along the driving shaft until you get to the underside of the engine and the exhaust.
The rust on the inside of the van is also important. There’s a seam just under the panels which is joined on the roof of the van. You’ll have to look up and down the seam as this is a place where most leaks ought to occur.
However, if you see rust that is gone untreated, keep in mind that it needs to be avoided.
#3: Check the Exhaust Fumes
If the van you are planning to buy has a DPF filter, you would want to check the exhaust fumes under load and on upon start up. If you notice black smoke when you start it. You should not consider buying it. Whereas, if you notice black smoke under load as well, this is also a cause for concern. The engine may have old thirst or may be injecting it incorrectly.
#4: Run an Engine Diagnostic
You can easily buy a diesel engine diagnostic tool kit online. Such kits work well on engines that are from the year 1996. When you’ve completed your test drive, you need to plug in the tool kit and run a diagnostic test.
The ideal result will be that no codes will pop up on the screen, which is a clear indication that everything is fine with the engine and it is running as it should be.
#5: Check the Service History
As mentioned above, the sprinter vans are mostly used by courier and delivery companies. You might rarely find a sprinter van that has taken to local garage for service every year. However, if it is an ex contractor van, you need to check back through all of the work that has been done to it. For major services, you need to check the 30,000 and 50,000 mile mark.
The newer models of Mercedes sprinters have “service assist”. They manage the service intervals based upon its usage. If the oil is being changed, you need to make sure that a new filter was added. Most of the time companies will skimp on the filters.
#6: Check All the Doors
As the sprinters age, they can be subjected to warping. This is a good time to reviews if there is any need for door replacement. Always remember that the door of your van need to close properly without leaving any gaps to the environment.
If the doors are not closing properly, you fill feel a lot of draft. This implies that you will find it a lot harder to keep the van warm in winter and vice versa.
#7: Break Test
When you’ve finally shortlisted a couple of vans, you need to take them on a test drive and perform a hard breaking test. This will allow you to see if the van veers from left to right.
#8: Suspension Test
Because the vans are used by couriers, the uneven loads in the vehicle can damage the suspension. The van can sometimes be damaged beyond repair. Just make sure that the height of the body under each suspension is even.
#9: Clutch and Gearbox
Maybe the greatest contrast between a private car and sprinter van rental is the vibe of the clutch and the gearbox. The grasp as a vehicle should nibble towards the highest point of the development. Switching gears is frequently heavier and requires more power than on a vehicle. Watch that there is no uproarious thumping on gear changes, and be certain the downshift into a gear to tune in for a high pitch cry.