How to Decode a Freightliner Semi VIN

by Richard Asmus
Semi image by Andrew Breeden from Fotolia.com

The Unofficial DMV Guide describes the 17-digit VIN as "a vehicle's DNA or fingerprint." Every vehicle manufactured since 1981 has one, including cars, trucks, semis, RVs, motorcycles and ATVs of all makes and models. Your Freightliner's VIN includes its year, make and model, information on the truck's engine size plus the options available--and included--on the vehicle when it left the assembly line. The VIN also includes a unique serial number.

Step 1

Look for the Freightliner VIN on the dashboard on the driver's side. Look through the windshield to see it clearly. If you can't find it there, look on paperwork such as bill of sale, title, insurance papers or registration card.

Step 2

Go to decodethis.com (see the link in the Resources section) and copy the VIN into the space provided. Press "Decode" and wait for the next page to appear. Scroll down to the various tabs marked "General," "Equipment," "Installed" and Optional." Click on each for information on how the Freightliner was equipped when it was manufactured.

Step 3

Navigate to the "Decode the VIN" reference at dmv.org (see Resources). Enter the Freightliner's VIN into the space provided and click on "Search." The next page shows a vehicle summary with an option to purchase a vehicle history report. You have no obligation to buy it.

Go to the VIN decoder at VINquery.com (see Resources) and enter the VIN in the space on the left. Click on "Go" to view the year, make and model of your Freightliner with options to buy more detailed reports, which cost from 50 cents to $1.90 as of 2010.

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