Anyone who's ever shopped for a used car has seen these words in classified ads: "LOW MILEAGE". But can you be sure the numbers on the dash are true -- or have they been rolled back to inflate the value of the car? Computer hackers know how to roll back even digital odometers, costing you big bucks. Rolling back odometers is illegal, but it's a scam that's growing. Automotive experts say the best way to protect yourself against hidden problems in used cars is to do your homework before buying. Compare the mileage in the CARFAX Report with the mileage on the odometer. If it doesn't match up, don't buy that car.
What's in your airbag?
Today airbag fraud has become a serious problem that could threaten your safety on the road. Replacement airbags can cost thousands. But crooked repair shops can pocket insurance claims for work that never gets done. In these cases airbag compartments might end up stuffed with rags, bricks - even beer cans. Experts say there are a few ways to avoid becoming a victim of airbag fraud. If you're buying a used car, first get it checked out by a mechanic you trust. Only a qualified mechanic can check the airbag system. You can also get valuable information about a car's past at Carfax.com.
Flood Damaged Cars - Carfax.com
Considering purchasing a used car? Protect yourself from buying a flood damaged vehicle with tips from http://www.Carfax.com.
CARFAX Vehicle History Reports - Used car buyer beware -
Buying a used car will unquestionably save you money. But before buying a used car, you need to know about the vehicle's past. Was the car ever salvaged in a major wreck? Has the car ever been in a flood? Or is the odometer correct? Before you buy a used car take a thorough test drive, get it inspected by a trusted mechanic, and order a CARFAX Vehicle History Report.
CARFAX Reports - Take the truth challenge
Think you can pick out a good used car? It's not as easy as you think. So do more than kick the tires when you're buying a used car. Find out the truth about that used car. It could save you lots of headaches down the road. Order a CARFAX Report, take the car for a test drive, and get an inspection from a trusted mechanic.
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Used Car Scam (The Today Show)
Today Investigates the Nation's biggest used car scam.
Buying a used car? Don't just take the seller's word about the car's history.
You can use a car's vehicle identification number (VIN) to get information including whether the car is stolen or has been in a major accident or a flood.
Since Jan. 30, consumers have been able to research cars through the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS), a program of the U.S. Department of Justice. The online database includes information for about 73% of the country's auto population, gleaned from state agencies, junk- and salvage-yard organizations, and insurance companies.
Currently information from 38 states is available, and all states are required to fully participate by Jan. 1, 2010.
Visit nmvtis.gov, click on one of the listed providers and follow the prompts. Expect to pay between $2 and $4 for a report, because the authorizing law required that federal funds not be used for this database.
Used-car reports from commercial companies, like Carfax and Experian's AutoCheck, have a higher price tag but draw information from a wider variety of sources.
A single report from AutoCheck costs $14.99 (unlimited access for 60 days costs $24.99) and includes information from all states as well as from some sources not found in the NMVTIS database.
When buying a used car, you need to verify the VIN so you are not a victim of this scam:
Here's How to Find Your Car's VIN
Locate your car's unique DNA - its unique vehicle identification number. VINs are normally located in several locations on a car, but the most common places are:
- On the door frame/door post of the front doors (usually driver's but sometimes passenger's)
- On the dash near the windshield
- On the engine itself (machined pad on front of engine)
- On the car's firewall
- In the left-hand inner wheel arch
- On the steering wheel/steering column
- On the radiator support bracket
There is a chart that gives further information (by car line) on both the location of the VIN plate and which character in your VIN represents your year of production and specific engine on a used car website, but they have limited the listings to only import cars since those are the car lines in which they specialize. http://www.autohausaz.com/html/vehicle_identification_numbers.html
Alternatively, you can call the consumer relations department for the vehicle manufacturer or visit a local new car dealer and ask for the location of the VIN
It is often etched into multiple locations on any vehicle.
Learn How To Properly Inspect A Used Car
In this eBook I will share with you the techniques I have learned over the years during countless used vehicle inspections I have performed for numerous car dealers.
You Will Learn How To..
■ Recognize a worn out engine by the smell of it's Exhaust
■ Reveal hidden body repair work using a magnet
■ Spot poor front end alignment by inspecting the tread wear on the front tires
■ Tell if an automatic transmission is worn out by the smell of the transmission fluid
■ Look at the engine oil and tell whether or not the engine has had regular oil changes
■ Tell if a cooling system has had proper maintenance by looking at the color of the antifreeze/coolant
And many more helpful tips and techniques!
What Your Car Dealer Doesn't Want You To Know
Welcome to your typical car negotiation, a dollar dance consisting of you, your salesman and some guy in the back of the showroom he keeps talking to on your behalf. Ask a car salesman and they'll tell you their markup is actually pretty small. Canadian news clip from CityNews.ca Jan 30, 2008.
Confessions from a Car Dealer's Backroom
It's a game of psychological warfare, said one current car dealer "money man," whose identity On the Money kept private. These salesmen are looking for customers who are "as dumb as possible," he said. The bottom line for customers is that they don't have to buy anything that's offered in the finance office of the dealership.
Courtesy www.cnbc.com (Aug 18, 2008).
Buying A Used Car Part 1: Exterior Inspection - EricTheCarGuy
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I've been asked about doing this video since people started watching my show 3 years ago and since it's a subject I wanted to spend some time with I made it into 4 parts, this is part 1 Exterior Inspection. I hope this video helps you and gives you some ideas of what to look for when purchasing a used car and if you have anything to add feel free in the comments below.
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Due to factors beyond the control of EricTheCarGuy, it cannot guarantee against unauthorized modifications of this information, or improper use of this information. EricTheCarGuy assumes no liability for property damage or injury incurred as a result of any of the information contained in this video. EricTheCarGuy recommends safe practices when working with power tools, automotive lifts, lifting tools, jack stands, electrical equipment, blunt instruments, chemicals, lubricants, or any other tools or equipment seen or implied in this video. Due to factors beyond the control of EricTheCarGuy, no information contained in this video shall create any express or implied warranty or guarantee of any particular result. Any injury, damage or loss that may result from improper use of these tools, equipment, or the information contained in this video is the sole responsibility of the user and not EricTheCarGuy.