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Rebuilt Title means that the vehicle was seriously damaged. Buy only if you checked VIN history and know what exactly happened. Be cautious about airbag deployment in the history!

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Vehicle History Check: Run with Different Services.

Vehicle history check covers a wide range of issues (other than a rebuilt title) and events that took place in the vehicle's past and may affect its value or even safety. Vehicle history search is done based on the VIN, it provides much more details than just studing the certificate of title which can give your only a very limited amount of information about the current car status and, possibly, specify certain issues like Flood Damage if the title is 'branded', whether the lien was cleared off the title or not. If certain cases your can also see an odometer reading and the date when it was taken and in this manner spot the engine replacement. The rest is obtained from the vehicle history check by VIN.

Today, the search based on the license plate number is also possible but the it fails quite often while the failures with the VIN are rare. Possibly, because the VIN is a more unified 17-character sequence and is easier to process than plate numbers issued in differnt states according to their individual requiremetns.

Vehicle history report sites

There are many websites providng VIN history checks, but there will be 3 major report types: NMVTIS, the most common and the most affordable distributed by most history services, Autocheck and CARFAX. Here you can find more about each of these VIN check options, what they actually are and what type of data you can expect.

A separate category are auction data sites. We'll talk about them here, they don't focus on history but the data they offer is valuable.

What sort of data can I get from a vehicle history report?

Here is the full list of possible records and title explanations. And below is a brief list of data orzanized in categories:

  • registration and owner change + state change
  • damage events: data and details
  • theft and theft recovery
  • branded titles, numerous, most commonly searched being Salvage, Reconstructed / Rebuilt , Junk, Lemon + brand names may vary from state to state
  • Service records provided by CARFAX and Autocheck, CARFAX reports more
  • total loss events + insurance company + salavge auction and its contact information(phone, location)
  • mileage reports and odometer tampering events or brands
  • specific use types (taxi, rental, etc) that might affect value or safety
  • passing / failing emission inspections
  • loan / lien
  • import

Have a look at our check list of hidden car issues for more information.

Vehicle History FAQ

Are there car history reports with photos?

Major vehicle hisotry report companies do not include photos, these are seperate data entities. But if you buy a vehicle from a CARFAX or Autocheck / Exrerian inventory or affiliated dealers that offer reports altogether with the vehicles they feauture, you get their report and, naturally, see the photos.

Some services selling NMTVIS repors may also run a seatch and add auction data (images, damage and vehcile condition at the time of the auction) to the gov reports they resell.

In other cases, photos can be found separately (if any) with classified ad sites, Craigslist, auction data providers or auction sites directly. In most cases these will be the photos from salvage auctions. If you find a Total Loss / Salvage records in the history you will be able to find a matching salvage auction report around that date with photos that took place a few years back. If some cases, websites with damaged car photots will also offer you to buy a report for the VIN of your interest.

Can I check a vehicle history by chassis number?

If your chassis are the basis of a motorvehicle (like some motorhomes based on Ford or Mercedes chassis or trucks on top of which an actual home it built, for instance) or they are a powertrain with a standard 17-digit VIN etched in it, you can do so. For example, in case with RVs chassis number check may returm more data that the VIN the RV is registered with.

Can I check history by number plate?

Yes, you can, this service exists. But users often complain that the search is not successful. Search by VIN is more reliable and satisfying. Of course, your should try if you have just the plate number.

Can I check history by engine number?

No, the engine number identifies the engine and not the car, it's a replaceable part. However, on some models you can find a VIN copy on the engine block, just make sure:

  • not to get confused about which of the codes is which
  • the VIN you see on the engine matches the actual VIN on the unibody / frame and in the documents as the engine might be unmounted from another vehicle

The VIN is not always etched on the engine but the engine number should always be found on the engine.

Can I learn how many owners the car had from a VIN report?

Yes, vehicle history reports track ownership changes and provide the informatin about the number of owners over its lifespan. Important! None of vehicle histories include current or previous owner names and addresses! This info is not disclosed according to the law.

Do VIN reports have odometer history?

Yes, they do. Please note that reports from private datasources have more mileage records as those are frequently supplied by bodyshops together with servicing records, so you can acutally call it a 'history'. As to government (aka federal / DMV / NMTVIS) database, you will most likely only see the miles checked on registration / title update / auction or other significant dates.

Are there histories for Trucks, Vans, RVs / Motorhomes, Trailers / Campers, Motorcycles, ATVs, SUV, Buses and other vehile types?

You should be able to find the basic title, total loss and odometer rollback records for all these types except for some motorcyles and ATVs in the gov database, although there won't be so much detail as with car histories, particularly from private companies. Private companies that started ther services specializing on cars added trailers, buses and all other types over the past decade. However, not 100% of searches will return a valuable or informative relust as opposed to cars.

How are tax records and VIN histories related?

Some poeple report they have been able to find owner data through VIN via open tax records.

Do all reports have accident history?

CARFAX and Autocheck do. With other providers, some minor accidents / collisions may be missing unless they were a Total Loss.

How much does a car history report cost?

With different providers, the price varies from as cheap as $2 to $35. With the latter option your get more history data including events that caused title branding, the damage type and even its location on the car, maintenance records and mileage at that point. In any case, you are free to start with the chapest options and if your see a title history which your find inacceptable you just move on to another vehicle. Otherwise, if the vehicle passes this preliminary check you can buy a more expensive report with all the details and a buyback protection.

Can I lookup a vehicle history free?

You can't check all of the above data free but there are free checks that may be sufficient to sift out 'unfit' vehicles and let your focus on better candiates so that later you purchase a report and order an inspection for a good reason and as a sound investment. Read about the possibilities of free checks.

Welcome to rebuilt vehicle information portal. Please, choose the information you need.

I want to:

Rebuilt Title means that the vehicle was seriously damaged. Buy only if you checked VIN history and know what exactly happened. Be cautious about airbag deployment in the history!

Check VIN Now Start VIN Check

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