Have you been searching for a suitable used car in the auto market? You’ve probably seen a variety of vehicles and carried out different tests and inspections to ensure you’re getting a fair deal. But did you perform the VIN number check? Why is this number so crucial, and what does it reveal? I will address these crucial questions today. But first, it’s essential to know what the number is and where you can find it. Let’s find out:
What Is the VIN Number?
VIN stands for Vehicle Registration Number, which is a seventeen-digit string of numbers and letters working as an identification code for the vehicle. Before a car exits the factory, the manufacturer issues this unique number and stamps it onto the chassis. VIN number is unique, which means every vehicle possesses a distinct, unalterable identification number since the day it was built. In contrast to car registration numbers and other vehicle codes, the Vehicle Identification Number can’t be changed.
Now that you know about the VIN number, let me explain what it means. Out of the seventeen digits, the first three make up the “WMI” (World Manufacturer Identifier). These digits signify the country of production, the manufacturer, and the vehicle type. Digits four to eight describe the vehicle, such as its model, engine, body style, etc. Each manufacturer codes these digits in their own way and can include other fine details as well, such as the presence of airbags or types of car parts used.
The ninth digit is the vehicle security code, while the tenth and eleventh show vehicle year and the plant it was assembled at. Lastly, digits ten to seventeen exhibit the vehicle’s serial number.
Where Can You Find the Number?
The location of a VIN number varies from car to car. Most likely, you’ll find the number on the vehicle’s chassis in the engine bay. You might be able to locate this number in other areas of the car as well. For example, most models in the UK have an additional VIN clearly written near the bottom of the car’s windscreen.
Other locations you can find it include:
- Inside the passenger door opening.
- On the driver’s section plastic trim
- On the right shock absorbed
Why Is A VIN Number Check Crucial?
When buying a used car, the last thing you want is to end up with a stolen vehicle or illegal vehicle. The VIN number check is the quickest and safest method for determining the real identity of your potential purchase.
We have two methods to confirm a car’s Vehicle Identification Number:
1. Vehicle History Check
Multiple online services offer vehicle history check that simply requires you to enter the Vehicle Registration Number. Their platform searches official databases and checks the history and details of the car against the given VIN number. This way, you can verify if the information provided by the seller matches the vehicle, you’re planning to buy.
The vehicle history check is the most reliable method for authenticating the VIN number of a used car. If you find something is out of the ordinary in the VIN number check, it’s best to walk away from the deal.
2. Check the Logbook
An alternative for verifying the Vehicle Identification Number is requesting the V5C registration document from the car owner. Once you have the logbook, confirm that the VIN number printed in it matches the number on the chassis. Furthermore, check that the numbers are all the same in other areas of the car as well. If any of the digits don’t match the one in the V5C logbook, don’t make the purchase.