Tips for Buying Used Snowmobiles
Guide and Tips

How to Buy Used Snowmobiles?

When buying used snowmobiles the mileage and mechanical condition are two of the most significant factors to consider. Snowmobiles are costly, and if a new snowmobile is a little too rich for your blood, you may consider purchasing a used sled. There is no hidden hack, and it will take constant grind and luck to end up with a deal that makes all your friends jealous.

Many people, particularly those new to the sport, don’t recognize how many types of snowmobiles there are and how many options are available. The secret to getting the right sled is to do a little search about what you really want from your upcoming snowmobile.

Why Buy Used Snowmobiles?

A new snowmobile will devalue as soon as snowmobile riders start to ride them. This means you can often get your hands on a nearly new machine for thousands less than what it would cost from the manufacturer.

Used snowmobiles are also a good option for beginners and it helps them to overcome all the things that they want to, So if anyone is looking to start his snowmobile career then used snowmobiles are the best to pick for them.

The best part about used snowmobiles is that they are available and very much cheaper than the new ones. You can find a good snowmobile for 1000$ to 2000$ which is a decent amount for your adventure outings.

CheaperIt might not last long
Good shapeWon’t have a warranty
Sometimes nearly newNo backup plan
Low initial investmentBad maintenance history

Best Time for Buying Used Snowmobiles

Buying from February forward through summer is ideal. Sellers listing a snowmobile this time of year tend to need the money more, and fewer buyers will be more susceptible to being negotiated down. If you purchase right after the snowmobile season, you can entice the seller by reminding them they will not have to worry about summarizing it and storage.

Key Points to Find the Best Deal

When you are considering buying a used sled, go over each of the considerations listed below to help you decide whether it’s a good decision or not. 

1. Little Research

Before buying used snowmobiles, it’s important to do some research to ensure you’re making a smart purchase. Get an idea of common issues that type of sled might have and what a good resale value is. This will help with the negotiation process.

Look up Brand and model reviews of the snowmobile you’re considering. This can give you an idea of the machine’s performance, durability, and any common issues to look out for, and research the typical price range for the snowmobile you’re interested in. Compare the price to other similar models in the area.

Be flexible with the manufacture, Engine size, track length, and model you want. The more flexible you are, the better chance you have of getting the best deal.

2. Inspect the Snowmobile Thoroughly

Inspecting a snowmobile

You should look it inside and out. If you notice any signs of damage that might cause an issue then you can negotiate at a lower price. Always look for major dents or cracks in the body, as this can be an indicator that the machine has been wrecked. Rust is another thing that is easy to spot and can lead to a range of problems when it gets bad.

Also, take a look at the seller’s possessions. Generally, someone who takes care of other items they own will take care of their snowmobile.

Never forget to check the cracks in the bulkhead or near the suspension mounting points because they can indicate the need for immediate repair. Make sure everything seems right.

3. Healthy Engine or Wore Out

After the visual inspection, it’s time to fire up the engine. One good tip to keep in mind here is to ask the owner not to start up the sled before you show up to look at it. Does the sled start hard and pull over easily? This could be a sign of low compression. Look at the miles and look at the rest of the sled.

The general rule is that if the rest of the sled wasn’t taken care of the engine was probably treated the same way.

If you bring a compression gauge you’ll screw it into the spark plug hole and pull the engine over (with the throttle open and key off) about 4-5 times or until the gauge has stabilized. Anything less than 120 psi indicates lower compression. If you’re below 100, you’re guaranteed a rebuild.

4. Test Drive is Compulsory

If you can take it on a test drive, continue to listen to the engine and drivetrain. The engine should be smooth running with no knocking, pinging, rattling, or clunking. The drivetrain should also be smooth.

Any ratcheting noises, high pitch whines, or low rumble rubbing noises can signal a bad bearing, worn bushings, or some worn parts in the drive or track.

Make sure all of your lights work, all of the switches function properly, and that you run the sled long enough to ensure the hand warmers (if the sled has them) work.

5. Maintenence History

Ask the seller for maintenance records and check for regular oil changes, tune-ups, and repairs. A well-maintained snowmobile is likely to have a longer lifespan. This is helpful for a few reasons. It can show you all of the work that has been performed and give you an idea of what might need to be fixed down the road. 

 If they fail to provide maintenance history it means they don’t know anything about the sled, I wouldn’t buy it unless you can get it for really cheap.

6. Negotiate a Price

Once you have looked the machine over, started up the engine, and taken it out for a test drive, you can begin negotiating a price. Ask the owner how much they want for the sled. Based on the maintenance history, visual inspection, and how it operates, you can make a counteroffer. If everything is in good shape, you might not have that much room for a lowball offer. 

Bargaining is fun, So don’t hesitate to offer as many counteroffers as possible. The worst an owner can say is ‘no’ to an offer.

If the sled is in lousy condition, offer a price that you think reflects that and tell the owner why. If it’s in terrible shape, don’t be afraid to walk away from the deal. Don’t feel pressured into buying. 


Take the tips mentioned above to heart when you are considering purchasing used snowmobiles. If one of your friends is a snowmobile mechanic or techie, bring him along! An extra set of knowledgeable eyes could save you from buying a dud.

If you buy a used snowmobile and it needs maintenance, make sure you make the necessary repairs or improvements before taking it to the trails. 


Buy or Not:

First-time snowmobilers should consider buying used ones. If you end up not enjoying the sport as much as anticipated, you won’t invest as much money. As long as you can get a well-maintained machine, buying a used one is always a good option. 

Reliable Brand:

I think that Yamaha snowmobiles are some of the best in general, making them a good choice for a used option. Any 4-stroke Yamaha snowmobile has a reputation for quality and longevity. 

Good Mileage:

Try to stick with a snowmobile somewhere in the 3,000-6,000 mile range for the best value and condition. You can always buy an option outside of this range, but it will cost you considerably more or might not last as long with high mileage. 

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