When buying a used car, you should always check its Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). This will give you access to important information about the vehicle’s history. A vehicle identification number (VIN) is a 17-digit alphanumeric code that is unique for every vehicle and assigned to all new vehicles sold in the United States. The VIN provides information about a car’s history such as its manufacturing date, production location and other information like engine displacement.
A Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) can be especially useful when you buy a used car because it can give so much more information about car usage over the years. It can tell you if there were any recalls of the car, provide information about its past collision history, and indicate whether or not it has been in any floods. Furthermore, if the VIN number has been reported stolen, this could indicate that the car has been stolen as well.
The Vehicle Identification Number provides some insight into the history of a car, such as where it was previously registered. For example, if a car was used in an area with harsh winter conditions, its VIN might indicate that it was previously registered in a colder climate. Or if a vehicle was used near the ocean, its VIN might indicate that it was previously registered in an area affected by corrosion. Checking the VIN also reveals whether or not a car has been totaled by an insurance company; this can be problematic if you purchase such a vehicle without knowing it has been totaled.
Why You Need a VIN Lookup
A vehicle identification number (VIN) check, also known as a VIN lookup or VIN verification, can provide much more information than a standard free VIN check. A VIN check is used for a variety of reasons, including to ensure that the seller is legally allowed to sell the vehicle and that it hasn’t been reported stolen or salvaged.
Example #1 is a vehicle that appears to be in solid condition, but it turns out to have been flooded or otherwise given a salvage title. A VIN check will uncover problems with the title that are not immediately or easily identifiable. And yes, there are ways that titles can be “washed” to show a clean title when that isn’t the case.
What Is a VIN Search Looking For?
To check a vehicle’s VIN, a search is run on its title history. A VIN check will provide information on the vehicle’s past owners and any accidents it has been involved in.
Is a VIN Check the Same as a License Plate Lookup?
The misconception that a vehicle identification number (VIN) check is the same as a license plate lookup is often perpetuated. A VIN check is not even close to being equivalent to a license plate lookup.
In the United States, license plates are attached to the vehicle rather than the driver. However, some states (Texas) keep tags with the individual car, although this is nullified if it crosses state lines or if the tag is a custom tag.
In Kansas, for example, the license plate stays with the car when it changes owners. Therefore, it is nearly impossible to trace a vehicle’s history through its license plate.
The vehicle identification number (VIN) is a unique identifier for a car. All pertinent information about the car, including its history, is reported against the VIN. The VIN never changes and is permanently affixed to the car; license plates are much more temporary.
EpicVin VIN Check
Our VIN check is not free. However, it provides you with information that will help you determine whether or not a car is worth buying. Our VIN check is your first line of defense when you find a car you’re interested in. Take it from me; it only takes a few minutes of your time. The check paints a much clearer picture of the vehicle and gives you bargaining chips to negotiate with.
But a more important factor than bargaining power is peace of mind. Instead of buying that family SUV that looked great, you might have avoided a disaster when you saw it had a salvage title in its history. Instead of buying a cheap commuter car for work and getting into trouble with it being stolen in the past, you might have avoided the trouble altogether by spending more money on something else. You just never know if you only look skin deep.
When buying a used vehicle, you should do a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) check to verify the vehicle’s history. A VIN check is the cheapest insurance you can get in the car-buying process; if it comes back clean, great! You won’t miss those few dollars anyway. On the other hand, if it comes back with red flags, you just saved yourself a headache at a minimum. So if you’re in the market for a vehicle, jot down the VIN and plug it into our VIN check program. You’ll get your results quickly (mine took six minutes) to move forward with the process or save yourself a hassle!