Each vehicle gets a unique VIN number during the manufacturing process. Some people like to refer to the VIN number as the car’s personal fingerprint, which is a really accurate explanation. For example, when a person commits a felony, the authorities record the fingerprint of that person. When someone ends up doing something shady with a vehicle, or ends up stealing it in the worst case scenario, the VIN number is used for further procedures. This is why people call it the fingerprint of a car.
For some people who aren’t familiar with this concept, a VIN number may be quite confusing. But, worry not because we’ll explain it all in this article. Let’s take a look at what you should know.
What is the VIN number of a vehicle and what does it represent?
There are so many different cars in this world and that’s the reason why we can’t refer to them as “the blue Toyota” or “that orange Porsche”, because there are millions other cars that can be described exactly like that. This is why every living person has a name and a surname, because we can’t just talk to each other as “hey, you blonde person”, we have to use names instead.
In case you need to perform a quick VIN number lookup, you can get a free vehicle history report by VIN number at vinreport.io.
Whenever a car is manufactured it’s given a VIN number. The same thing goes for people, we’re given a name upon birth. Every time you take your car to a service, swap oil, perform an upgrade or involve it in a road accident, the authorities use the VIN number to identify the vehicle and conclude precisely about which car we’re talking about.
However, for someone who is unfamiliar with this concept, taking a look at such a long “code” can be rather confusing, or even scary. “How in the world am I going to decipher all this?” is what you’re probably asking yourself. Well, don’t worry, we’ll help you understand everything.
“Deciphering” the VIN number or “code”
The first character of this seventeen-digit code means the location where the vehicle was created. The next two characters represent the manufacturer’s identity. The next five numbers and characters are meant to explain the specifications of the vehicle, such as engine size, brand and the type. The ninth is a security code. The tenth is the model. The eleventh is the factory where the car was assembled. The last six characters are just the serial number. There, it’s easy isn’t it?
Now that you know the basics of the VIN number concept, let’s take a look at how you can use some of this information in real-world scenarios.
Why is a VIN number so important to know?
A VIN number is important to know because it can give you the entire history of the vehicle without any room for scams or lies. Most people selling old vehicles will indeed try to hide some things to make you purchase their car, but the VIN number never lies. And, thanks to the internet, you have websites where you can check the entire history of a car just by doing a simple VIN number input and pressing the search button.
In case something happens to your vehicle you can report it to the police accurately by using your VIN number. This is much better to do rather than simply telling them it was a “red Camaro” that got stolen from your very own backyard. Knowing the VIN number of a car has many, many benefits.
If you were to purchase a car, you are probably really interested on whether the previous owner did proper maintenance or not. Well, guess what, they’ll always tell you they took the best possible care of the vehicle, and it’s up to you whether you want to believe them or not. But, if you want to be absolutely sure, the VIN number can give you all the required answers. How cool is that?
How can I find my VIN number in the easiest way?
Now you know how powerful knowing the VIN number is, so let’s see how you can find it and use it to your advantage.
You can find this 17 character code on multiple places across your car, but here are the two most common ones:
- The door post located on the driver’s side
- At the dashboard on the driver’s side of the car
If you can’t find it here, try this:
- Take a look at your vehicle registration confirmation card
- Car insurance policy issued by your insurer
Checking these locations for the VIN number is totally allowed and encouraged whenever you visit a dealership or someone in private who wants to sell you a car. It’s your right to know the history of the vehicle before paying for it, so don’t be shy or afraid to look it up. As we said above, this is not a small transaction and for most people this type of sum is life-changing money. Don’t waste them on a vehicle that wasn’t maintained properly.
Knowing the VIN number of a vehicle can help you with a lot of things. You will be able to learn more about the history of the vehicle if you’re purchasing an older, used one, and you’ll find it much easier to avoid any possible scams. Buying a car is not a small investment, especially nowadays in a time when money are quite difficult to get.
In this article we explained everything that a person who isn’t even remotely familiar with the VIN number concept needs to know, so we hope you enjoyed our content and we’re thankful for the time you took to read it. As always, remember to do your own research before purchasing and use the VIN number to your advantage, as it can help you avoid some really dodgy situations. We’ll see you in the next one.