Buying a used Peloton is a smart way to get what is otherwise a pricey exercise bike. I bought mine used, and have no regrets; the seller was honest, as far as I can tell, and I saved a good $500 compared to what I would have paid if I had bought the Bike directly from Peloton. But not all used Bikes are what they seem, and it would have been great if I’d been able to check out the Bike’s history first.

Now, Peloton is launching a tool to do just that. They call it the Peloton History Summary, and it allows you to look up the history of any Bike or Bike+ from its serial number. The big caveat, for now, is that the program is still in beta and won’t return results from every Bike

What the Peloton History Summary can tell you

I punched in my Bike’s serial number, only to be told my Bike wasn’t included in the beta. (They’re rolling it out slowly, so yours may not be in there, either.) 

But Peloton does present an example summary on their website. It suggests that a history report might contain: 

Number of hours the Bike/Bike+ has been ridden

Whether the company has ever sent a tech out to repair it

Number of total registered owners, including the current owner

Whether the Bike/Bike+ is currently covered by a protection plan, and if so, when it expires

This is all useful information to have when you’re considering buying a used Peloton. When I bought mine, I grilled the previous owner on the Bike’s history, but there was no way to know if he was telling me the truth. My experience ended up matching what he told me: The Bike had no issues and seemed to have been gently used. The only issue was that it needed a new bearing cartridge, which is a part that is known to wear out over time. (Peloton sent me a new one for $45 and I installed it myself—an inconvenience but not a bad deal at all.)  

How to use the Peloton History Summary when buying a used Bike or Bike+

To use the history summary, you need to find the serial number on your Bike or Bike+. If you scroll down on the history page, Peloton has a guide to finding it: It may be on or behind the front fork, or behind the flywheel. (It is not on the back of the screen; the serial number there is for the screen itself, not the whole Bike/Bike+).

I found the easiest way to read the serial number from its awkward spot was to take a photo of it, then use my iPhone’s text scanning feature to copy and paste the serial number. (Double check that it copied correctly—for example that a zero didn’t get mistaken for the letter O, or vice versa.) 

When you’re buying a Bike or Bike+, you can ask the seller for the serial number and then run it through the history tool—much like doing a VIN lookup on a used car. When you show up to collect your new Peloton, make sure to check it’s the same serial number before handing over the payment. 

Peloton suggests that sellers might like to be proactive about this, getting the history on their own Bike/Bike+ and posting that in their sales listing. They also note that they’re still working out exactly what information the history will provide, so stay tuned to learn what this feature looks like when it comes out of beta.