To buy antique traffic lights, check out flea markets, auctions, online classifieds, online auction sites and traffic light collectors. Collectors may have duplicates in their collection they might consider selling. It's important to compare pricing of traffic lights of varying conditions when buying. Purchasing lights already restored may be more expensive, but cheaper traffic lights in worse condition could cost a lot of time and money to restore.
Buying antique traffic lights, as a one-time purchase or as the beginning of a collection, involves deciding what kind of light to purchase. Is a certain design type particularly interesting? From four-way pagoda to two light flashers, to portholes and art deco traffic lights, there are a wide variety of sizes and designs. Some purchasers like traffic lights made by a specific manufacturer. Eagle, Crouse-Hinds and Darley are popular manufacturers of collectible antique traffic lights but there are plenty of others.
When purchasing, check out any damage and consider how difficult it will be to fix. Even something as seemingly simple as removing old paint in favor of a new paint job can mean risking damage to the traffic light's aluminum finish. A bent part might need a replacement or just some work with a hammer. Being specific with the seller about any flaws in the traffic lights is important, both for knowing how much to pay for the item and whether or not the purchaser is capable of fixing it.