A car’s VIN (vehicle identification number) is essentially a code that lists a bunch of relevant information about a particular car. This includes the type of vehicle itself, as well as when and where it was manufactured. You can also use the VIN to find your car’s service history or to see if it has been in an accident at any point.
Today, we’ll be going over everything you need to know about using your VIN to perform an accident check
Does a VIN Number Show Accidents?
The VIN itself is just a code that lists basic information about the vehicle. The VIN number includes the serial number of the vehicle, as well as other numbers and characters that reference where the vehicle was built, characteristics of the vehicle like the engine size and vehicle type, and the model year of the vehicle.
The VIN itself doesn’t actually show how many accidents the car has been in; however, you can still use the VIN to find out if your car has been in any accidents before you’ve owned it.
If your car has been in an accident, then information pertaining to that accident will be collected by various sources, such as mechanics, insurance companies, and vehicle registries. All of this information is associated with your car’s VIN when filed.
If you buy a vehicle history report from a company like Carfax or VinCheck Pro, then they will look up your VIN on all of these databases, compile what they find, and submit a report to you with all the information you want. Companies like this usually charge between $10-40 for a check like this, but it’s worth it to avoid the hassle of doing it yourself.
It’s also worth mentioning that you should always take a vehicle history report with a grain of salt. The accuracy of these reports depends on what information is reported to the organizations that companies like Carfax or AutoCheck get their data from. Therefore, if someone gets in an accident but doesn’t report it, the vehicle history report might not reflect this.
How Do I Check a Car’s Accident History?
As we’ve mentioned, the easiest way to do this is through a service like Carfax or VinCheck Pro . To use them, all you have to do is go to their website and search for your VIN. The site will then give you all of the records associated with your car.
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Afterward, you will then usually be presented with the choice of buying a single report or multiple reports (if you want to look up the VIN for more than one vehicle). If you use Carfax, you can also do a lien check and see if there’s still any money owed on the vehicle as well.
How to Find My Car’s History by the VIN Number
Once again, you can often find out the complete history of your car by using your VIN to get a vehicle history report. If the previous owners of your car were diligent about keeping track of things, you should have no problem finding out just about everything about your car‘s history.
Aside from finding out if your car has been in an accident or not, a detailed vehicle history report can also tell you things like:
- How many owners the vehicle has had
- How the vehicle was used
- How often the vehicle was serviced
- Whether or not the mileage has been rolled back at any point
- Whether or not the car is a salvage vehicle
- Whether the car was recalled at any point
- What locations the vehicle has been registered in
Are you still looking for a way to check a VIN number?
Check out four VIN check services that you can use over here. Hit the Button
Do Body Shops Report to Carfax?
Generally, auto repair shops don’t have to report anything to Carfax. They certainly can, and they probably will if they want to go the extra mile, but they generally have no real obligation to do so. If you want to know whether the body shop of your choice is going to submit your vehicle information to Carfax, your best bet is probably to just call the shop and ask them.