Finally, an Easy Recall Lookup Tool!

VIN locations

There’s a 30 percent chance that the used car you’re driving has never had a defect repaired.

Automakers issue recalls on cars almost as often as they produce new models, so odds are good that your car has been recalled at some point. Thirty percent of recalled cars are never repaired, which isn’t a big deal if the recall is minor and involves something like a floor mat or trunk hinge. The missed repair could be devastating if the recall is for something more serious, like the recent GM ignition switch debacle.

Used car shoppers, until now, had to conduct difficult research to determine whether or not a car was recalled and repaired. As of this week, there’s an easy online tool that anyone can use to find out quickly whether or not recall repairs have been made on used cars.

The New York Times said,

A new online search tool allows consumers to type in a vehicle identification number, or VIN, to check on whether recall repairs have been completed on a specific car, truck or motorcycle. The service, which began Wednesday, is available on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website or the sites of individual automakers.

The free search tool lets consumers quickly learn whether a vehicle they are considering for purchase has a safety problem that has not been addressed. Recalled vehicles can be repaired without charge at franchised dealers.

This is another great shopping tool to add to your arsenal. Use the CarGurus listings to find the best deal on the car you want, then run its VIN through the NHTSA’s service to get a clearer picture of the vehicle’s history. Combined with a thorough vehicle history report and a visual inspection by a qualified mechanic, odds are better than ever that you’ll find a car with a pristine past and a promising future.

Have you tried the NHTSA’s new recall search feature?

-tgriffith

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