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Tips for Buying a Used Tractor for Your Hobby Farm

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If you recently purchased a hobby farm and are in need of a used tractor, then you will be pleased to know there are specific things you can do to ensure that your new-to-you tractor meets your needs. Just as with buying a used car, buying used farm equipment requires that you perform some due diligence and possess the knowledge to know which problems will require inexpensive fixes and which will require major repairs. To assist with your search, here are some tips to help you buy the best used tractor for your new hobby farm's needs.

Tip: Purchase a Bit Bigger Than You Need Today 

When you talk to other hobby-farm owners, the one thing they will always tell you is that they wished they had a larger tractor on their farm. While you do not need an industrial farm–sized tractor, you likewise do not want to purchase a tractor that is too small. As your farm grows and as you come up with new projects that need to be completed, you will invariably wish you had larger heavy equipment to make your life easier. By your selecting a tractor that is a bit larger than your current needs, your business will be able to grow, and the tractor will still meet most of your needs. For those one-off times when you must have a piece of larger equipment, you can always rent or barter for a machine to use short term.

Tip: Make Sure That the Internal Wear Matches the External Wear

When you are looking at a used tractor, you should compare the wear it shows on the outside with the wear of the internal cab area. For example, a tractor that shows a lot of dents and scratches on the outside should show similar signs of wear and tear on the inside. In the same way, a tractor being sold as having very low hours should not show excessive wear on its interior or exterior. 

Tip: Check the Tractor's Smoke Color

Before you agree to purchase a tractor for your hobby farm, you should always test-drive it. However, rather than climbing in and starting the tractor yourself, ask the seller to start the tractor while you stand outside and view the smokestack. The smoke from a diesel engine should start out black but soon change to clear. If the smoke stays black or comes out with any color after the initial startup, then there may be a mechanical problem with the tractor's engine, and you should have it checked out by a licensed farm-equipment mechanic. 

Talk to a company such as Big Springs Equipment to get started buying farm equipment.