What to check for when buying used...

Frank Guard

New Member
I found a used 2014 Turbo S with only 100 miles on it. I am going to inspect it this weekend.

1. Is this model year reliable?
2. What should I look for when doing the inspection?
3. Is there any way to check battery health?

Thanks and regards, Frank
 

Douglas Ruby

Well-Known Member
I found a used 2014 Turbo S with only 100 miles on it. I am going to inspect it this weekend.

1. Is this model year reliable?
2. What should I look for when doing the inspection?
3. Is there any way to check battery health?

Thanks and regards, Frank

The 2014 Turbo S has a smaller battery than the 2016 and has a 250 W motor. It should be very reliable assuming no damage. A new battery for this model would cost $800.

When inspecting the bike, check to make sure all electrical controls work well, check to make sure chain, chain rings, and derailleur are clean and well lubed. Test ride the bike to make sure it works properly. If at all possible, the battery should be charged and hold a 100%.
 

Marko

Active Member
You can ask him if he has charged the battery regularly (like every three months min.) because obviously he hasn't been riding it. I think the odometer count is stored in the battery software so it probably is correct. Even if not, a bike that new cant have many miles on it. Maybe you can take a test ride with it and see how the charge is holding. I have understood from some comments here that the joystick has malfunctioned in some cases, so check on the test ride that it works. When the power is on and in turbo mode, lift the rear wheel; if it spins by itself, it means that the motor needs recalibration, meaning it needs to be done by Specialized. Probably it would be in warranty but a hassle nevertheless. Check if the bike has a chain guide or at least a possibility to install one. Chain falling of the chainring is a "feature" of these bikes if there is no chainguide or a special narrow-wide chainring. If there is a Specialized (Turbo) dealer nearby, you can go there to have the bike's battery charge cycle count checked. A special software and a device is needed and only dealers have them. I mean, if the bike has 100 miles on it and, say, only 3-4 cycles on it, that could mean that there hasn't been much maintenance charging going on.

Regarding reliability, I think you can be pretty much at ease; the Turbo has some high quality components in it. Hydraulic disc brakes require very little maintenance and the gears work really well too. Rims and spokes are sturdy, so no bending rims or broken spokes to be expected, at least I haven't and any problems with the rims. I haven even had any loose spokes, which I constantly have on my normal bike.
 
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JoePah

Well-Known Member
Sounds like a nice bike.. 100 miles is nothing.. 2 years is a bit of a problem:
1. No warranty.
2. Battery probably needs replacement within 2 years.

Start it from a dead stop and listen for any rattling from the motor. Should run like new and be silent since it's a direct drive motor.

Look for leaks on the hydraulic brakes.

You should be paying less than 50% of list price.

If you do buy it, give it to an LBS for a complete tuneup or yourself if you're handy.

Have fun!
 

Marko

Active Member
I am not as pessimistic about the battery. I think it would still be fine even if the maintenance charging was neglected somewhat. After all, it is only a couple of years old. But yeah, you should probably seek <50% of the new.
 

John Dombrowski

Active Member
I found a used 2014 Turbo S with only 100 miles on it. I am going to inspect it this weekend.

1. Is this model year reliable?
2. What should I look for when doing the inspection?
3. Is there any way to check battery health?

Thanks and regards, Frank

How much are they asking for it?
 

Frank Guard

New Member
Douglas Ruby, Tara D., Marko, JoePah, and John Dombrowski,

Thanks to all for the support. This is such a great community!

General Condition
I haven't ridden a bicycle in 35+ years, so my knowledge on what to look for and to make a fair judgement on the condition is rather limited. I will check for the obvious scratches, dents and the like.

LUBRICATION
I will verify that items like the chain, derailleur, etc., are clean and lubricated.

SCREEN /JOYSTICK
I will check that the screen is functional (including the backlight) as well as the joystick. This seems to be one of the more common failure points. It is my understanding that the display will also show the software version. I am not sure how to determine if it is the latest version though.

BATTERY
I can check that the battery has a full charge and reads 100%. I've read some batteries will not charge to 100%. There is no way short of taking it to a dealer to determine the overall health and number of charge cycles. Based on age and miles, I hope that it has been connected to a charger to prevent a full discharge of the battery. I am not sure I would believe the seller if they told me maintenance charging had been performed. I will take a test drive to see if the battery is draining abnormally. Other than that, this is the most difficult part to determine condition.

MOTOR
I will listen to the motor while riding to verify that it is silent (no rattles). I will lift the rear tire while the Turbo mode is engaged to see if the wheel spins and requires calibration.

WARRANTY
Specialized warranty terms indicate that it is NOT transferrable so...

CHAIN GUIDE
Looking at the pictures, it seems that the chain guide was added in the 2016 Turbo S. I will have to install one myself (suggestions as to brand and model?). Maybe my LBS can help there...

TIRE / WHEELS
I'll flip it over and spin them to check TRUE. There should not be any wobble.

BRAKES
I'll check that they work and aren't leaking. Should I be worried about any squeaking?

PRICE
He is asking $3000

Thanks and regards, Frank
 

Frank Guard

New Member
The model was misidentified. It turns out that this is a mint condition 2013 version. Is it still worth pursuing? Any ideas on how much one should pay for it?

Thanks and regards, Frank
 
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JoePah

Well-Known Member
2013 has a small battery 340Wh. Worth maybe $1500. You will be buying a new battery next year.
 
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pxpaulx

Well-Known Member
Agreed with Joe, way to much, bikes in general, especially in the battery dept, have come quite a long way since 2013. You should check out @Crazy Lenny Ebikes here on the forum (send then a massage or look them up online), if you are thinking of buying used, you might be able to get a new or demo bike from them that is current and much better than a 3 year old specialized e bike for a similar cost.
 

Marko

Active Member
@Frank Guard
Being an owner of a MY13 Turbo I can say that is a good price, especially with such low mileage.
I make a small correction to my earlier comments about the charge cycles and maintenance charging. You would probably not see many cycles even if the battery had been charged from time to time because one cycle comes from a complete 0 to 100 charge. I have noticed that the battery autodischarge is quite slow; it does not drop much even after weeks.
What comes to the MY13, I can say that it is a quality ride. Specialized has downgraded many of the parts since then because obviously the price needed to come down. The only thing I would recommend to upgrade is the chainring. This is one alternative: (Link Removed - No Longer Exists). There are others but this is the only one I found with the original 48T setup.
The battery is 342 Wh and the motor is rated 250W, but I have read it can do about 800W peak. In any case, it is more than enough power. Agreeably the capacity is not that much, but if that is a problem, you can purchase the new Turbo battery which is 691 Wh. The new Turbo has a 500W motor so it is twice as power hungry than the older version, so keep that in mind if you read range estimates of the new Turbo.
Unless you live in California or Hawaii, I would also recommend purchasing the fender/rack kit.

I add: my battery is as good as new and it has more than 2000 miles on it, freezing temps.
 
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Frank Guard

New Member
@Marko
There is no way for a consumer to see the charge cycles. I believe it requires a special connector and some Windows software available to Specialized dealers. If I buy the bike, I will take it to one and have them examine it.

What parts do you see as having been downgraded? This is my first ebike so I am learning as much as I can.

Has it been verified that the new 691Wh battery will work with the MY13 Turbo?

I live in California so I believe I can save some money by excluding the fender / rack kit. I also like how it looks without it!

Regards, Frank
 

Marko

Active Member
@Frank Guard
I just recalled. My Turbo had a software bug (in the battery). It caused the odometer and other meters to reset every time you turned off the bike. So that might explain the low mileage. There is a fix to it, but you need a dealer to do the installation. But in any case, if the bike looks to be in good condition, it probably has a relatively low mileage anyway.
As for downgrades, the MY13 version has some carbon parts which are gone, the gears changed and some other things as well. Not sure they make such a huge difference, though.
I cannot verify the MY16 battery compatibility, you should ask the Specialized customer service. But I am pretty sure it is ok, you may not be able to use all the BT functionality, but otherwise I think it should work.
 
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Frank Guard

New Member
@Marko
When you had the software bug, it consistently reset the meters EVERY time you shut off the bike? If so, I can check for that easily by doing the same. With regards to the mileage, I assumed that the meter was in the hub motor. It does not make much sense to have the meter in a replaceable component!

If I may ask you, what average range do you get with the original battery? Assuming perfect conditions, are you able to maintain 45kph for long periods of time?
 

Marko

Active Member
@Marko
When you had the software bug, it consistently reset the meters EVERY time you shut off the bike? If so, I can check for that easily by doing the same. With regards to the mileage, I assumed that the meter was in the hub motor. It does not make much sense to have the meter in a replaceable component!

If I may ask you, what average range do you get with the original battery? Assuming perfect conditions, are you able to maintain 45kph for long periods of time?

Come to think of it, the resetting could not be consistent otherwise the bike you are buying would be at zero. But I know there was resetting going on, but when it occurred, I dont know for sure. The software version 18 has the fix, but to my knowledge there is no way of checking the version unless you have the diagnostic device and software.

If I ride in eco (30%) mode about 9 miles, the battery will have drained to about 70-75%, some hills, variable conditions from summer windless to strong winds and subzero temps. So you should be able to get about 30+ miles in the eco 30 mode. Turbo mode will of course decrease the range considerably.
Under favorable conditions (summer, no wind or tailwind, flat terrain) I can maintain 45 km/h for a short while (about 1 km) even in the eco30 mode. In turbo mode it's easy. In winter with snow and studded tires I can quite easily maintain 30+ km/h in the eco mode. Only with strong headwinds I use the turbo mode.
 

Frank Guard

New Member
I checked on the Specialized forums for information on compatibility of MY13 with the 691Wh battery. No information. I will contact support and see what they say.

With regards to your range, you seem to be doing quite well considering your battery has some miles on it. I am impressed and hopeful.
 

Marko

Active Member
@Frank Guard
I can check the current mileage, but is not correct because of the bug. I owned the bike for some 300 miles before I got the fix and I bought the bike as used (demo bike which the store owner also used) so I have no way of knowing the real miles but I am pretty confident it is not more than 2500 miles. Be sure to get the stock charger (4A) and not a travel charger. It is big but it will charge the battery in about 3-4 hours from empty to full. No fans in it.
 

Marko

Active Member
Oh yeah, also check that the bike support has not been limited to 25 km/h. That can be changed but it requires a dealer willing to do it.

BTW, the MY13 has, in my opinion, a better power control switches than the new one. They are very convenient to use. Looks more stealthy as well. Also, the old model has a rear brake lever regen switch which is not anymore in the new models.
 
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