How to Use a VIN Number to Check a Car’s Options 

Written By Alla Levin
August 05, 2021

How to Use a VIN Number to Check a Car’s Options

When buying a pre-owned car, you might be curious to know what options the car was originally ordered with. Using a VIN, you can check a car’s options. So, how do you find it? You can get detailed information about your vehicle’s options using the vehicle identification number.

Consider contacting your car manufacturer’s dealership’s service department and providing them with your car’s VIN. Upon asking them, they will provide all the information regarding the options that your car was ordered with.

Finding out what options your car was ordered with

You can get a bucket load of information using the VIN of your vehicle. This information includes the date of manufacture, vehicle type, place of manufacture, and more. You also get to know the options your car came with after it was out of the factory.

There are various ways to get the information as well. For one, you can directly seek assistance from a car dealership. Another option is to decode it yourself by doing some self-studying. One other way is to seek help from businesses that offer VIN decoding services.

What is a VIN?What is a VIN

Also known as a chassis number, a vehicle identification number is a unique code that holds a vehicle’s unique serial number. The automotive industry uses the vehicle identification number to distinguish each car and its unique features. VINs are not exclusive to cars; in fact, all vehicles have VIN, including bikes, towed vehicles, and others.

Finding the VIN Number in your Car

Typically, the VIN of your car can be found on the dashboard or even the inside part of the doorjamb. VINs are sometimes stamped on various parts of you’re vehicle as well. VINs usually consist of 17 alphanumeric numbers.

Finding what options your car was ordered with through VINHow to use a VIN number

There are different methods of utilizing a VIN to figure out your car options. These options are:

  1. Asking the Car Dealership
  2. Buying a Vehicle History Report
  3. Accessing VIN decoding websites

Getting assistance from the Manufacturer or Car dealership

The manufacturer will aid you in determining the options that your car was originally ordered with. First, you need to know your car’s VIN, and then you can communicate with them. This is one of the best ways to get the most accurate information about your car’s factory options. If you are struggling to find the VIN, then look at the documents associated with your vehicle.

Try to contact customer service if you are unable to contact the dealership directly. Ask them about the information you need and provide them with your VIN.

How to use a VIN number: Purchasing a Vehicle History Report

Several providers of Vehicle history reports sell the reports to their customers when they provide their VIN. These reports are very comprehensive, especially the paid ones. They contain things like the historical data of the vehicle, the model, the repair details, and much more. Typically, you are required to pay a fee to get the service. Some providers also provide free reports, but they are mostly incomplete and skip on much valuable information.

Vehicle report providers like BADVIN provide comprehensive reports at a very reasonable price. It’s a relatively new report provider, so the price is meager, but the quality of service that BADVIN can provide is relatively high. It uses artificial intelligence to flag cars for potential odometer rollbacks and suspicious sales activities, rare to get at that price point. The basic report costs 2.99$ while the premium report will cost 4.99$, which is very cheap compared to the other providers like Carfax and Auto Check.

Checking VIN Decoding WebsitesChecking VIN Decoding Websites

You can access the car’s manufacturer’s website to decode the VIN. However, if it’s not accessible, look for third-party websites that decode your VIN for you.

In this scenario, you will need the VIN serial as usual, and many websites provide free VIN reports, albeit limited. If you need extensive data, then there will most likely be a fee associated. Most of these sites are incredibly efficient and provide you with the data that you are looking for. When it comes to factory options of a vehicle, you will get details about transmission, vehicle/s trim, and emission specifications.

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