Buying a new car

Each time we rent a new house we discover something new to look for, seems the same holds true for buying used cars. In July we were so eager to trade our 2003 Taurus for a van that we jumped the gun and ended up with a lemon of a van. Before the first 12 hours of owning it were over the check engine light was on. We got it checked out at AutoZone and told the car dealer we bought it from. A small local dealer near a motorhome repair shop.  They told us that since it was "as is" the best they would do is order the parts for us at dealer cost. The code that came up was a few cheap things so we didn't think it was that big of a deal. We didn't fight it any.  turns out we should have, because after fixing the part that should have turned off the  code, the light was still on. we got it checked by a garage, and they told us a list of things that needed fixed. almost $500 later we have a van that barely runs.  Needless to say, there's not much we can do this time around, but we definitely learned a few lessons about buying used cars!  and it was an expensive lesson to learn!