If you are checking out many potential cars to purchase, you may want to look for a free VIN check. However, most free VIN checks are actually a scam, or they charge for their services in other ways. Alternatively, other free VIN checks only provide minimal information regarding a vehicle, which may not be enough for you when considering a vehicle. One of the best free VIN checks are provided by the National Insurance Crime Bureau.
This free service from the National Insurance Crime Bureau lets you know if a used motor vehicle’s VIN is found in a database of stolen vehicles. Although this is all the National Insurance Crime Bureau free VIN check shows, it is important to do this in order to prevent this situation. No prospective car buyer should purchase any vehicle, especially any vehicle on the most stolen list, without obtaining a free VIN report from a free VIN check first.
The National Insurance Crime Bureau free VIN check is a service provided to the public in order to assist in figuring out if a vehicle has been previously reported as stolen, but has not recovered, or has been previously reported as a declared total loss or salvage vehicle by cooperating National Insurance Crime Bureau members. In order to perform a search of the vehicle, you must have the vehicle’s VIN available. A maximum of give free VIN checks can be done within a 24-hour period.
The free VIN report and free VIN check services are offered by the National Insurance Crime Bureau and through many other car report companies. The free VIN report not only tells you whether a car motor vehicle has been stolen, in some cases the free VIN report can also tell you whether the motor vehicle has been. Often, people get the free VIN check first before buying the free VIN report, because if the motor vehicle has been stolen or salvaged, there is no reason to purchase the not-free report.
Not only does the National Insurance Crime Bureau provide these free VIN checks, but they also provide a list of the 10 most stolen cars. You should take precaution when purchasing these vehicles:
• Honda Accord (1994)
• Honda Civic (1995)
• Toyota Camry (1991)
• Chevrolet Pickup (1999 Full Size)
• Ford F150 Series/Pickup (1997)
• Dodge Ram (2004)
• Dodge Caravan (2000)
• Acura Integra (1994)
• Ford Explorer (2002)
• Ford Taurus (1999)
Getting a Free VIN Report
While your options may be extremely limited in finding a free VIN check in order to receive a free VIN report, there are still some ways to get more information about a used vehicle before a purchase. You may want to get this report because while the free VIN check from the National Insurance Crime Bureau tells you if the vehicle was stolen, a free VIN report will not give too much information on the following:
• Lemon title
• Flood, fire, hail, frame or other major damage
• Severe accident
• Salvage title
• Multiple owners
• Odometer rollback
• Title washing
• Police, driver education, taxi or any other problematic use history
Furthermore, with a free VIN report, you may not be able to do the following:
• Confirm ownership, service history, and mileage of the vehicle
• Check for any active recalls of bulletins
• Check the availability of an extended warranty
• Check the status of the remaining factory warranty, if any
Finding a VIN for a free VIN Report
The VIN of your vehicle is normally found on the door frame of the vehicle on the driver’s side, although it can also be near the windshield on the dashboard. If you are performing a free VIN check on a used car, then the seller of the vehicle should be able to provide you with the VIN number. If the seller is unwilling to provide the VIN number, this is a very bad sign and you should immediately walk away from the sale of this vehicle because there may be significant problems with the vehicle.
You can then get a free VIN check or a free VIN report by searching for various websites that provide them. While the National Insurance Crime Bureau provides information, you may also wish to try other sources. Be very hesitant with sites that claim they can provide a free VIN report but then still ask for your billing information or charge you on a regular basis.
You will need to put in the vehicle’s VIN number where directed on a site in order to get the free VIN report. Some websites may email you the report while others will display it immediately on your screen. These free VIN reports will not provide a full history of the car, but they will let you know whether the car has been stolen, had a salvaged title, taken part in a crime, or more. Based on the free VIN report, you can decide if the vehicle is worth purchasing.
You can also use the vehicle’s VIN number to get a used car free VIN report. You can check how many reports have been previously filed for the vehicle. If you notice that there are many reports filed, then you might want to more closely inspect the used vehicle. Be aware that the used car report is not the same as a VIN report. Used vehicle reports usually are not free and they require a fee.
Insurance companies are usually the ones who manage the databases that contain all of the vehicle report information. These reports are given voluntary from the companies and are often based off of the reports for claims or other insurance issues. You can see if the vehicle is stolen, has ever been previously stolen, or if it has had any salvaged titles. You will not be given information about title changes, maintenance, major accidents, or other details.
If the vehicle has never been insured before, or if it was insured by a company that did not provide information for free VIN checks or free VIN reports, then you will not be able to get any helpful information regarding the history of that vehicle. Make sure you ask the appropriate questions regarding the history and the condition of the vehicle. Try and obtain documented proof for as much as possible about the vehicle. If you have doubts, you will need to make adjustments to the bill of sale, so both seller and buyer are satisfied.