Buying a School Bus? Consider The Following

Is your school planning to acquire a new bus this year? Well, buying a bus is a huge undertaking that comes with a lot of questions. For instance, will you buy a new bus or look for used buses for sale? Which are the considerations to make among other questions?

Here are the primary factors to consider when buying school buses. Be sure to follow them for quality results.

1. Choose the Type of Bus you want to buy

There are different types of school buses in the market. Statistics show that the US had over 976,161 registered buses in the country. The figure keeps on growing. Here are the most common types of buses in the market today.

• Conventional Buses

Most school bus drivers are comfortable with this type of bus. The mechanics also find the bus easier to fix and repair. In the conventional buses, the front wheels are in front of the driver. The hood and the engine compartment are in front of the windshield.

• Transit-style School Buses

The model is growing in popularity by the day. The transit style buses share a similar wheelbase of the same length with the conventional buses. They have a larger sitting capacity and can also be made on a shorter wheelbase.

There are two types of transit style school buses. The type D rear engine bus and the type D front-engine bus.

2. Check the Chassis

The chassis is the frame to Type A school buses. Check it to ensure there’s no rust or bends. If there’s any trace of damage here, walk away. Another new bus for sale will come along. Acquiring a bus with a damaged chassis will cost you a huge amount of money in the future.

3. Check for Rust

Do you want to acquire a used bus for sale? Well, you should expect some surface rust. However, if the rust is more than the yellow paint, walk away.

So, where do you check for rust in Type A school buses? A few areas to check to include the steps, inside the rear wall, under the bus and around the lights.

For used Type A school buses, some surface rust is expected. Even better, you can sand, treat and paint your bus afresh. But walk away if there is considerable rust.

4. Take the Bus for a Test Drive

Before you pay for the bus, consider taking it on a test drive. Once you make the wheels spin, you’ll learn a lot of things about the bus.

For instance, if the bus has air brakes, how fast does it build the air pressure? If the low air light takes more than 2 minutes to go out, then there is a problem with the compressor or a possible air leak. If the air brakes fail, they’ll lock the wheels up. You don’t want this to happen.

5. Check the Transmission System

As you take the school bus on a test drive, listen to how it changes gears. For example, if it’s manual, the change between gears should be smooth. Put the school bus in reverse, back up, and ensure you don’t feel a bump when changing gears.

If you’re buying a used school bus, ask the seller whether the transmission or the engine has been rebuilt. If yes, does the rebuild have any transferable warranty? Ask the owner to share the maintenance records. The documents will reveal all the maintenance exercises including the oil changes that has been done on the bus. If the seller isn’t willing to share these documents with you, walk away. Chances are, they are hiding something from you.


Is your school planning to acquire a Type A school buses? Well, there are different considerations to make. For instance, ask the seller to share the service records. If buying from a used bus sales shop, ask for manuals and other documents that came with the bus at purchase. Take the bus for a test drive to check and ensure that everything is in order.

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