Car Buying and VIN Decoder Infographic
VINs are a tracking system used by the automotive industry to tag each specific vehicle with a unique identification number. Each country uses a different system, and the United States uses a 17-character system, based on ISO 3779:2009. The NHTSA standardized the formula in 1981. Each character stands for something like the make, model, and manufacturer, the year the car was built, the manufacturing plant and other identifiers.
VINs are useful in helping track vehicles that have been in accidents, floods, have incomplete recalls on them or are lemons. You may also find out if the car has open liens on it and if the airbags have ever been deployed. Now that most vehicle information is online, it is effortless to track a complete vehicle’s history including owners, the accuracy of make, model and year, odometer readings and repairs using the VIN.
When buying used cars, many people like to do research online and find out all they can about the car before buying. By obtaining a full vehicle history report (VHR), you can rest assured that the car you are buying is free of defects, and safe and sound for you and your family to drive.