What is a VIN Number (Vehicle Identification Number)?

VIN stands for a Vehicle Identification Number. It is a 17 characters unique code assigned to every vehicle as its fingerprint. These 17 characters are capital letters or numbers and include no special characters or small letters to avoid confusion. This number is assigned to every vehicle after it is manufactured. Each character of a VIN stands for something meaningful that lets you know a lot about a vehicle. Different vehicle manufacturers imprint this VIN in various places on the vehicle. Most commonly, you can find your VIN on the dashboard of a car.

Number of characters:17 (combined with digits and capital letters)
Where to look:Interior of the driver’s side dashboard generally
Meaning of the first digit:Country of manufacturer

What Do The Numbers And Letters in a VIN Mean?

Each character in the VIN denotes information on the vehicle. Here is how you can decode it and know more about the vehicle.

How to Find the Vehicle's VIN Number?

Depending on the vehicle, the VIN on your vehicle can be found in several parts. On most passenger cars, you can find the VIN on the interior of the driver’s side dashboard. You can also find it under the hood on the front of the engine block on gasoline cars. It can also be found out on the driver’s side door pillar. In older cars, VIN can be seen over the front end of the frame over the wheels. In motorcycles, the VIN can be seen imprinted on the steering neck under the handlebars. You may also find it over a plate above the motor. In semi-trailers, it is usually located in the front left of the vehicle.

If you can’t find the VIN on the vehicle, the easiest way is to use your vehicle’s title document or insurance documents (if any).

  • Interior of the driver’s side dashboard
  • Under the hood
  • Driver’s side door pillar
  • Front end of the frame over the wheels

What Will You Get from VIN Report?

Previous Accidents

Theft or Burglary

True Market Value

Warranty Coverage

Past Owners

Actual Distance Covered

Original Specs Confirmation

Manufacturing Defects

Registration History

Car Sales History

Damages Incurred

Odometer Readings

Lien and Repossession

Vehicle use history

Inspection and Registration History

Why Search for a VIN Online?

There are ample situations in which a VIN search online can prove to be helpful. Some of these reasons can be:

  • Extracting all the specs about you car
  • Checking the history of a used vehicle
  • Getting well-informed prior to car purchase
  • Ensuring that the car is not stolen
  • Verifying the ownership of the car
  • Replacing the car parts with the originals
  • Preventing any frauds
  • Confirming Car Conditions

YA VIN check is usually helpful when purchasing a used car. You never know what dark history a vehicle may possess. Running a VIN check keeps you assured of the vehicle’s history such that you don’t fall prey to a defective vehicle.

What Are The Benefits for a VIN Check?

Conducting a VIN check is beneficial for a number of reasons. When you are buying a used vehicle, you want to be sure that you are getting what you are paying for. This is when VIN helps you by providing you with exact details regarding the features and specs of the car. It offers the proof about when and where the car was manufactured. It also ensures that the car is safe to buy, and not linked to any malicious activities.

How to Check The VIN Number?

Checking a VIN number is easy. All you need to do is follow these steps:

  • Locate the VIN number of the car. It could be located beside the engine.
  • Use a VIN number lookup service, like VinPit, and enter the extracted VIN number.
  • Hit enter, and wait for the details to be served to you.
  • What Can I Do With a VIN Number Lookup?

    Once you have found the VIN of the vehicle, the next thing to do is look it up online through a VIN lookup.

    VIN lookup is crucial when buying a used car. With the VIN lookup, one can look up the authenticity of the vehicle. A VIN is a 17 character code assigned uniquely to every vehicle. Through this number, you can decode a lot about a vehicle like its manufacturer, model, make, year of manufacturing, country of manufacturing, engine and body type, type of vehicle like car, truck or bus, serial number of vehicle, and more.

    Matching up the VIN of a vehicle with its engine can also help find the originality of the vehicle, as a car’s engine also has a VIN imprinted on it. Also, the car dealer may lie about the vehicle’s year of manufacturing, but VIN can help you know the right answer.

    It can also be used to track down your car if stolen. A VIN also has a security code represented by the ninth character of the VIN. This security code is calculated by taking into consideration the other characters of the VIN. It thus helps in knowing if the VIN you have belongs to the vehicle in question or not.

    What to Look Before A Car Purchase

    Buying a car is a big ordeal. To make sure you don’t get your money in the wrong hands, here are some of the critical considerations to make before a final car purchase.

    An Eye On The Budget

    Set the budget before purchasing a car and stick to it. Don’t get carried away by the promotional tactics of the dealer and end up purchasing out of your budget.

    Maintenance Cost

    Maintaining a car after making a purchase is not easy. Make sure you take into consideration the after-purchase cost of it too. These extra costs would include the gas charges, servicing charges, and costs that you might spend on your car’s upkeep from time to time.

    Purpose Of The Car

    Keep the purpose of the car in mind while purchasing. Communicate to the dealer why you are buying the car, be it for daily commuting, overhauling, and gifting purposes. The dealer will be able to guide you better then.

    Safety Features

    Every car goes through various safety and crash tests before entering the market. To top it, nowadays cars are made with advanced safety features. Ensure the one you are purchasing at least has the most important ones like airbags, anti-lock brakes, traction control, stability control system, and so on.

    Features Of The Car

    Do a bit of research on your choices and their features before approaching the seller. This will give you an upper hand in negotiating for the price. Also, some additional features cost extra. Decide if they are worth the extra dime and proceed further accordingly.

    World Manufacturer Identifier (WMI)

    The first three characters of the VIN are collectively termed as World Manufacturer Identifier as it provides information on the vehicle’s manufacturer.

    WMIRegionNotes
    A-HAfricaAA-AH = South Africa
    J-RAsia>J = Japan
    KL-KR = South Korea
    L = China
    MA-ME = India
    MF-MK = Indonesia
    ML-MR = Thailand
    MS = Myanmar
    PA-PE = Philippines
    PL-PR = Malaysia
    RF-RG = Taiwan
    S-ZEuropeSA-SM = United Kingdom
    SN-ST, W = Germany
    SU-SZ = Poland
    TA-TH = Switzerland
    TJ-TP = Czech Republic
    TR-TV = Hungary
    TW = Portugal
    VA-VE = Austria
    VF-VR = France
    VS-VW = Spain
    VX-V2 = Yugoslavia
    XL-XM = The Netherlands
    XS-XW = USSR
    X3-X0 = Russia
    YA-YE = Belgium
    YF-YK = Finland
    YS-YW = Sweden
    ZA-ZR = Italy
    1-5North America1, 4, 5 = United States
    2 = Canada
    3 = Mexico
    6-7Oceania6A-6W = Australia
    7A-7E = New Zealand
    8-0South America8A-8E = Argentina
    8F-8J = Chile
    8X-82 = Venezuela
    9A-9E, 93-99 = Brazil
    9F-9J = Colombia

    VIN Check by State

    To help you refine your search, we also provide a VIN check by state. This would allow you to extract information on your VIN faster. Just click on the state you have the VIN from and extract information quickly.

    VIN Check by Make

    We also provide VIN check by make, i.e., just click on the given make of your vehicle and extract information faster.

    Other Types of VIN Check

Frequently Asked Questions

What if my VIN doesn’t decode?

If your VIN doesn’t decode, try another decoder that may include more data coverage. If not, try rechecking your VIN characters and make sure it is 17 characters long.

Who is a vehicle report for?

A vehicle report can be useful for car purchasers or for dealers trying to sell a used car and many others who could benefit from the information extracted from the vehicle report.

What is in a vehicle history report?

A free vehicle history report provides details of a vehicle suching its general specs, warranty information, theft/accidents/fraud records, and much more. .

Does a dealership provide a VIN check?

If a car is certified pre-owned and relatively new, the dealer would be able to get you a VIN and run a VIN check to know if the car has been worked upon in other dealerships in the past.

Can you get personal information from a VIN number?

A VIN check can fetch important information regarding the vehicle in terms of damage,theft and accidents and many others. Yet it cannot provice the personal information of its owner such as his or her social security number, credit card and bank accounts.