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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I posted an intro a while back, and have been on the lookout for a van since. The used market is rough! I think I finally found a van at a (really) good price but it's a bit far. I paid a local mechanic to go look at it for me and they reported the only issue is some "light undercarriage rust".

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Is this something I can bust off and add some coating? Go to Ziebart (found that searching the forum) and have them add some coating/bust off?
It is a moderately high-mileage rental from the North East, so I know there are some sacrifices to be made for the price. The fiancee and I are thinking about quadvan as well, so not sure if this kind of undercarriage rust would preclude that as a possibility.
 

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I would run away from this one. Too much road salt and/or sea salt. .
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would run away from this one. Too much road salt and/or sea salt. .
Why though? I know it's not brand new, but if it's a good price and I am on a budget is this an actual structural/technical risk? or just extra work and/or $$ to fix and mitigate?
 

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Looks fine to me, Wash the underside of the van and it will look brand new.

A three year old 2015.

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I would have no problems with the minor surface rust. It’s just not old enough to be too bad. I would put some effort into cleaning up the surface rust and adding some type of protective coating...POR 15 or something. If you like the van and are good with the price, don’t let it get away!
 

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Pics are too small to see much. But, undercarriage surface rust is totally normal. The degree will vary by region. Are you also in the northeast? Go to a local lot with used cars, and look at one the same age as the van. Find a Transit, if you can. Crawl under and look to see how similar they are.
 

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My brand new 2020 has noticeable rust on the pumkin and central driveshaft. Doesn't look like anything of concern to me. Just make sure you wash the underside anytime you're on roads with salt.
 

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I posted an intro a while back, and have been on the lookout for a van since. The used market is rough! I think I finally found a van at a (really) good price but it's a bit far. I paid a local mechanic to go look at it for me and they reported the only issue is some "light undercarriage rust".

View attachment 147791 View attachment 147792 View attachment 147793

Is this something I can bust off and add some coating? Go to Ziebart (found that searching the forum) and have them add some coating/bust off?
It is a moderately high-mileage rental from the North East, so I know there are some sacrifices to be made for the price. The fiancee and I are thinking about quadvan as well, so not sure if this kind of undercarriage rust would preclude that as a possibility.
I would reconsider Ziebart. It's a thick, rubberized coating that gets sprayed over everything. This means it is very difficult or impossible to remove any fasteners on the underbody after the coating is applied. There are reports of mechanics refusing to work on cars with Ziebart undercoating, as well as examples where the undercoating actually trapped moisture between the coating and the metal.

After some research I settled on Fluid Film or Wool Wax, which are both lanolin-based sprays. They also get sprayed over everything and require an annual reapplication, but don't have the aforementioned issues associated with Ziebart.
 

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I posted an intro a while back, and have been on the lookout for a van since. The used market is rough! I think I finally found a van at a (really) good price but it's a bit far. I paid a local mechanic to go look at it for me and they reported the only issue is some "light undercarriage rust".

View attachment 147791 View attachment 147792 View attachment 147793

Is this something I can bust off and add some coating? Go to Ziebart (found that searching the forum) and have them add some coating/bust off?
It is a moderately high-mileage rental from the North East, so I know there are some sacrifices to be made for the price. The fiancee and I are thinking about quadvan as well, so not sure if this kind of undercarriage rust would preclude that as a possibility.
I am afraid that's how they are. Mine looks the same and I have 800 miles on it...I plan to put some rust protection soon.
 

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If you click on the thumbnail a larger picture will appear.
Of course i tried that, and was surprised it did not work. That was on an older Chromebook that is no longer getting updates (still, generally works great).

Thought the OP had used a non-standard method of placing photos. Yes, i see them today, on my phone.
 

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My brand new 2020 has noticeable rust on the pumkin and central driveshaft. Doesn't look like anything of concern to me. Just make sure you wash the underside anytime you're on roads with salt.
Ditto...same here with my new 2019 (now w/5K miles, and no road salt driving). When I install my shock relocation brackets, I'll neutralize the rust, and coat it with Eastwood Rust Encapsulator Platinum.
 

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Rust all over the suspension parts and exhaust on my 2015 when it was still in the lot; less than 500 miles and one year out of the factory doors. I'm guessing all this rust is normal for Transits. Not desired, but normal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I would reconsider Ziebart. It's a thick, rubberized coating that gets sprayed over everything. This means it is very difficult or impossible to remove any fasteners on the underbody after the coating is applied. There are reports of mechanics refusing to work on cars with Ziebart undercoating, as well as examples where the undercoating actually trapped moisture between the coating and the metal.

After some research I settled on Fluid Film or Wool Wax, which are both lanolin-based sprays. They also get sprayed over everything and require an annual reapplication, but don't have the aforementioned issues associated with Ziebart.
I came to the same conclusion after some more research this morning. Thanks for the advice, I will look into those other products. Looking at some of the ziebart pictures I can imagine a mechanic not wanting to deal with that coating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for the advice everyone, it is worrying me a bit less now but I will do some extensive washing if I manage to snag this van. There is a shortage of underside videos/pictures out there so i wasn't sure what to expect :). I was watching a quadvan conversion video this morning though and with the brand new van on the lift it has rust in the same spots! (lighter but still there).

Thought the OP had used a non-standard method of placing photos. Yes, i see them today, on my phone.
I think I put them in normally? But then the pictures had little resize handles and I thought "oh cool! I can make them small and then people click on them to see the large version!". I personally dislike the HUGE pictures in a thread, but I guess I learned making them small doesn't work for everyone.
 

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There is another under coating called line x . When my new van is eventually built I will try line x . Dealing with under coating is pain , but dealing with rust is the pits .:)
 

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New from factory Transit rust photo's.

 

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Is this a AWD?

First of all congrats on finding a good deal! It’s always very exciting.

Pictures make rust looks very bad... I’ve been in car business for many years.
Honestly I wouldn’t worry at all about it, get a good pressure washer and wash it out good. Then apply undercoating and your golden. Not an issue at all.

So in conclusion buy it as long as mechanical aspect is perfect.
 
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