What not to buy at garage sales

CHARLOTTE — Spring and summer weekends always have plenty of garage sales and everyone loves a bargain. But no matter the bargain, there are some items you should never buy used.

Consumer reports researched the biggest no-no products at the neighborhood yard sale.

One item you should be wary of is battery-powered lawn tools. They should come with a charger, extra batteries, and ideally the manual.

“The most important thing you want to know is the age of the tool,” said Paul Hope.

Many riding lawnmowers have an hour meter, so check how many hours it’s been on the job. Also, check out the owner’s yard.

“If you’re buying a mower from someone who has a ton of trees and not much grass, you might get a great deal because that mower might not have been used all that much,” Hope elaborated.

While yard sales can be great for getting kids items on a budget you have to make sure those items haven’t been recalled.

Never buy a crib with drop-down sides. They were banned in 2011 and have been linked to dozens of infant deaths.

Also, be extra careful if you’re considering a crib that’s not put together.

“Sometimes a used crib may be passed on to you disassembled. You won’t know if there’s missing hardware unless you have the assembly instructions,” said Angela Lashbrook.

You should be careful when buying used toys. Be careful with used toys. If they use batteries, look for a closure with a screw because those are considered safer.

Lastly, used car seats are a don’t buy because you don’t know about their crash history. If you are certain a used car seat hasn’t been in a crash.

You also want to check for broken or missing parts, as well as the seat’s expiration date. That can be found in the owner’s manual, along with the model number incase of recalls.

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