You can also find out if the manufacturer had ever issued a recall of the vehicle and whether those repairs were made. Finally, law enforcement agencies do a VIN check to identify vehicles that have been stolen.
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The first three characters of every VIN number uniquely identify the manufacturer of the vehicle. Expert level? Beginner level? Needs improvement?
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Additional Vehicle Info. Most Recent Recalls. Source: official gov. Most Recent Complaints. Submitted by other owners of this model. How many characters: 17 digits and capital letters Where to find: Dashboard on the driver's side First digit stands for: Country of manufacturer. How would you rate your driving? Take a free quiz. Dashboard on the driver's side. Country of manufacturer. VIN detail reports may not include options added after manufacturer, added at the dealership, or added by the consumer after the initial sale. Depending on the website, you may need to pay a fee for your VIN report.
Method 3. Find the VIN decoder or search section of the website. Almost all manufacturers have a VIN decoder or similar tool on their website. For example, visit estore. Look at the world manufacturer identifier. The world manufacturer identifiers are the first 3 letters or numbers at the beginning of the VIN. This will give you information about the type of vehicle and where it was produced. Identify the second sequence of numbers. The second sequence, numbers and letters 4 through 8, tell you more information about manufacturer options. These numbers will tell you info about the: Engine Model Body style.
Skip the ninth digit. This is the digit used to verify that it is not a fraudulent VIN. It cannot be used to find information about the car. If you suspect the vehicle has a fake VIN number, contact the manufacturer. To decode this number, you may have to bring your car into a dealership.
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View the tenth digit. The tenth digit will tell you the model year of the vehicle.
VIN (Vehicle Identification Number)
This is important to knowing the options on the vehicle, as different model years are equipped with different option group packages. This does not indicate what year the car was built. Find the last 7 digits.
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Along with the second sequence of numbers, these last digits are perhaps the most important for finding the options of the vehicle. These numbers should give you information like that listed on the original sticker of the car. The numbers will also tell you what specific plant the vehicle was built as well as production specific information. Read about common options. While manufacturers use different codes to represent different options, the information encoded in the last 7 digits of your VIN number will provide specifics about a number of options.
These numbers will give you info about common options like: Trim color Power seats and windows Entertainment system Seat covering material Sunroof Equipment packages like off road or towing . Method 4.
Submit your VIN to a third-party website. There are several companies that compile and sell vehicle history reports. Try websites like: Carfax Autocheck . Pay a fee.
After submitting your VIN, the third-party website may prompt you to pay a fee for a complete vehicle history report. While you may not want to pay, it is standard for companies to charge for this service. Feel free to shop around.
Different websites or companies may offer different prices. In addition, some companies may run promos on vehicle history reports at different times.
Some websites may provide cheaper rates per report if you want several vehicle history reports. Examine the report. When reading the report: Verify the report matches the VIN you submitted. Read about the car's production and the vehicle's repair and registration history in the report. Look to see if the vehicle has been repaired or if the report shows any evidence of aftermarket upgrades.
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