Car Buying Tips

When it comes to Car Buying, we've been there, done that, now serving 147 tips in 17 categories ranging from Auto Warranty to VIN.

What information is excluded from a VIN decoder?

VIN Decoders Omit Certain Car History Details

Due to confidentiality issues and inept inspection practices, not all VIN decoders will include a car's complete history.

Here is a list of information that is not included on a vehicle history report:

- The previous owner's name(s)
- According to the 1994 Drivers Privacy Protection Act, vehicle history reports are prohibited from including such information.

- Lien release information is not generally included in a Vehicle history report.

- Data and information regarding pre-1981 vehicles
- Since, the standard of manufacturing cars with VINs was not legalized until 1981, adequate information is not available on models produced before that time.

Can you recommnend an affordable alternative to Certified Pre-owned (CPO) vehicle

An Affordable Alternative to the Certified Pre-owned Vehicle program

Various online vehicle history sites offer Buyback Guarantee programs with each vehicle identification number (VIN) decoder report. These polices can protect a consumer from purchasing a car with significant mechanical problems that may have been erroneously reported by the state's Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) agency.

Running a VIN search with a guarantee policy may work as the affordable alternative to a Certified Pre-owned (CPO) vehicle program.

Why are VIN Searches Important?

Why Consumers Should Run a VIN Search

Vehicle identification number (VIN) searches are critical security features to buying a car. VINs serve several key purposes:

-- Defend against consumer fraud and theft

-- Assure accurate information regarding a vehicle's history

-- Identify any glitches in the vehicle's title

When used cars are certified, the VIN is verified against a Motor Vehicle Records (MVR) database.

Since VIN records are centralized, it is simple for any person to access the records of a prospective used car. As a result, conducting a VIN number searc is essential to making the right car buy.

What do the 17-digit number on the VIN mean?

Decoding the 17-Digit Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN)

The 17-digit numbers found on Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN) symbolize the following information:

- The first character- identifies the country where car was manufactured.

- The second character refers to the manufacturer. For example: eight stands for vehicles manufactured by Saturn.

- Third character refers to the type of vehicle type the manufacturing sect.

- The fourth and eighth characters identify the car's features (including the body style, model, features and so forth).

- Ninth character reveals the vehicle identification number's accuracy as a check digit.

- The tenth character refers to the car's model year. For instance, ‘Y" represents the year 2000.

- An eleventh character symbolizes the assembly plant of the vehicle.

- The twelfth and seventeenth characters- refer to the sequence of the automobile's production order when it rolled off the manufacturer's assembly line.

How can I be sure a dealer is not misrepresenting information regarding a used car?

VIN Decoders May Prevent Used Car Fraud

Not all car dealers and sellers practice ethical tactics. A number of fraudulent used car transactions could be prevented with the use of a vehicle identification number decoder.

When it comes to buying a used car, naiveté may cost you headaches and expenses. Fortunately, VIN decoders will paint a more accurate depiction of a vehicle's history. Car buying Web sites feature VIN decoders.

Arm yourself and protect your purchase by employing an eye-opening used car shopping tool, a VIN Decoder.

Where can I locate the VIN number?

The Basics on Vehicle Identification Numbers (VIN)

A savvy way to shop around for a used car entails requesting the dealer or seller for the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). At online car site, car buyers may use the Web site's VIN decoder to learn about the car's history.

Did you know that the letters I, O and Q will never be found on a Vehicle Identification Numbers (VINs)? Subsequent to 1981, VINs were added to all cars. The VIN number can provide valuable information pertaining to a car's history.

Here are three places to locate the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN):

- Dashboards

- Driver's side door on jamb stickers

- Title documents

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Sheri Ann Richerson