Each time a vehicle is sold, its odometer records have to be documented. Nevertheless, there is a statistics, and according to which, among every dozen of sold cars there is one coming with its odometer being tampered with.
There are a few ways how car sellers can defraud purchasers. They can disconnect odometers for a specific period of time, reset them, change the data, or replace them with other odometers without providing any notifications. Take note that all of these actions can be easily applied to digital devices as well.
Below, there are a few tips on how to avoid odometer fraud:
- Order a car history report. As far as an odometer reading has to be documented with each ownership, a https://vincarhistory.com/vin-check report will help you to check if the value of an odometer was reduced at some point. However, if you still don’t eliminate the possibility of being defrauded, then take the following steps.
- Check the mileage. Before buying one car or another, make sure that the actual odometer mileage complies with the data documented in all inspection records.
- Look for the signs of fraud. Inspect an odometer itself to detect the signs of tampering. Check if all numbers line up as appropriate and are not crooked. Ensure that there are no gaps in a line. It is also advisable to inspect a dashboard as well as an instrument panel cover to see if any of them was removed. To do so, look for scratches and mismatched or missed screws.
- Inspect the car itself. Take note that a car with a low mileage features original tyres as well as original brakes. If it doesn’t, then ask a seller why. Check if the wear and tear matches up with the numbers displayed on the odometer. Check the overall situation of the gear shifter, pedals, and steering-wheel and observe attentively the depth of the tyre tread.
An actual odometer value is kept in the control module while there may be wrong numbers displayed on the dash. With the right tools and software, car sellers can easily tamper with the data displayed on the dash, but not with those kept in the control module. In facts, this is a pretty good news, as every car buyer can take it to a dealership and check its mileage.
There is no surprise that a pre-owned vehicle with fewer miles on its odometer comes at a higher price than the same car with less miles. The difference can be quite substantial; therefore, many car sellers tend to defraud buyers and reduce odometer mileage to give an appearance of a less-used car. Such activities are illegal, and rolling back an odometer is considered as a felony.
If you are sure that the car you bought features an odometer that had been tampered with, then don’t hesitate to sue the car seller. Be sure that many consumer lawyers would be happy to take this case with no up-front charges. We hope that you will be able to detect odometer fraud in time by following the steps mentioned above.