How to Get a Free Vehicle History Report

by Contributor

A vehicle history report is like a background check for a car: it provides a detailed list of everything the vehicle has been through, including basic things like actual mileage and age, to more severe things like major car accidents and repairs. Whenever you are ready to purchase a used car, you should strongly consider getting a vehicle history report to ensure the seller has not lied or concealed any important information. You can also find ways to get a free vehicle history report.

Ask the dealer or seller for a free vehicle history report. Many dealerships are now providing these reports at no cost to consumers. Some private sellers are also giving a free vehicle history report to potential buyers. Simply ask the dealer or seller to give you a free vehicle history report before you make a final offer on the car. The costs for the report are low for dealers, so if a dealer refuses to give you a free vehicle history report, it could be a sign that something is seriously wrong with the vehicle.

Utilize free vehicle history report services. There are a small number of free vehicle history report services available predominantly online. While these services typically do not provide a more detailed report like some of the major vehicle history providers, the limited information the free reports do provide can give you a general idea about the vehicle's reliability. If you discover any questionable items through these free services, you may want to consider purchasing a full report, or avoid purchasing the vehicle entirely.

Take advantage of the basic free vehicle history report offered by major vehicle history services. Companies like CarFax offer a basic report to consumers at no cost. This is a great way to determine if you need to purchase a more detailed report, or if you should just avoid the car altogether.

Use a deep-web search engine to find the vehicle's history. Deep-web search engines go beyond typical web searches, and check through databases of public records for a variety of different things - including vehicle and title records. You can create your own free "vehicle history report" by typing the full vehicle identification number (VIN) into a deep-web search engine and searching. Focus specifically on records listed under your state's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV or MVS) or similar organizations.

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