VIN accident check – a must step when buying a car that's been involved in an accident

Since there are many services providing VIN check tool, today’s car shoppers can easily find out if a vehicle they are considering was damaged or involved in an accident. Another question that arises is whether you should buy such a vehicle or not. Here are some factors to consider.

Run VIN accident check to find out how serious the damage was

Firstly, figure out how serious the damage was. You can order accident report by VIN to get this information. Thus, your VIN report may say “minor damage” or “major damage”. The first one should not bother you much, but the latter is a red flag.

Remember that VIN report may not be accurate. Unfortunately, there may be errors and a car that is in relatively good condition may show up as “major damage”. For that reason, it’s better to have your vehicle inspected.

Have a vehicle inspected

Should you have any concerns about the vehicle, take it to a certified mechanic. It is strongly recommended to deal with a trusted mechanic, not with the one that the seller recommends.

A good mechanic will easily spot the evidence of prior accidents. But damage is not always a reason to go away from the deal. After all, there are thousands of cars on the road that have been involved in accidents. That doesn’t always mean they should not be driven or considered again.

Figure out who fixed the car

Another important factor to consider is who fixed the car. Was it cheap repairs or a thorough repair job performed by a "factory" body shop? A mechanic can answer this question. If panels don’t properly fit or if a car lost its emblems, it can be a red flag.

Check the vehicle’s title

Another major factor to consider is the car’s title. VIN report is the easiest way to obtain this data. To get a free accident report, VIN number should be provided.

Your report can tell that a vehicle has “salvage” or “rebuilt” title. In many states, the first is given to a car in which the cost of repair works is more than its value. The latter is given to repaired cars that were inspected and proved to meet certain safety criteria. It is recommended to stay away from both these titles, since rebuilt title cannot be altered and some insurance agencies do not provide coverage for such cars.

Consider the resale value

And the last thing to think about is the vehicle’s resale value. You should understand that the next buyer will also easily figure out that the car was damaged. So even if this car is a good deal for you, you are not likely to get as much for it when you sell it. In addition, it may be rather difficult to find a buyer.

The bottom line is that you should always check VIN for accidents and have a car inspected when considering a pre-owned car. Don’t purchase a car on emotions and consider all the pros and cons of the deal.

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