FREE Vehicle Lookup

Check The History of a Car Before Buying

Is this vehicle safe to buy?

  • Clean Title History
  • Salvage History
  • Accident, Total Loss Events
  • Theft, Open Lien & Recall History
See Sample Report

Each DMV Vehicle History & Title Report checks for:

Vehicle Specifications
Insurance Total Loss
Open Lien Information
DMV Title Information
Odometer Records
Other Information
Salvage and Whole Car Auction History
Safety Recall from NHTSA and Manufacturers
Brand Glossary

Frequently Asked Questions

You ask questions, our job is to answer them.

Where can i find my car's VIN information?

A VIN number records can be found on: The driver's side door, a sticker or a metal plate. The lower corner of the windshield, on the driver's side of the vehicle. Your vehicle title and registration. Your insurance card.

How do i get a vehicle history record?

You can download the most up-to-date vehicle records with DMV.com, or visit your local DMV. A comprehensive VIN history report will protect you from any foul play from a seller, such as: reversing the odometer, not disclosing previous repairs, or hiding accidents that may have damaged the frame or the vehicle.

How to sell your car with a VIN number check?

Preparing to sell your vehicle requires providing car info by VIN to potential buyers. Prospective buyers who obtain a VIN number report will get through information about the vehicle and it's condition. As a seller, you can then effectively address any question or concerns regarding the sale, and also get closer to your asking price.

What qualifies for a refund?

DMV.com stands behind the data provided & we provide refunds in the case of any error in title data is not correct as evidenced by a copy or proof of such data error from a state title document.

Why is my credit card showing a charge for a report that I did not receive?

If you ordered a report for a VIN for which no data was available you may see an authorization on your credit card for the amount of the report you requested. This is an authorization only & will be released by DMV.com within 24 hours. Hold times may vary by individual banks.

Is this a one-time charge?

Please be assured that the charges for a single or multiple Vehicle History & Title Reports are one-time charges. There are no monthly automatic charges or fees. You are only charged for the reports you specifically purchase.

Where does your vehicle data come from?

Vehicle history information comes from many sources including records on file from NMVTIS, state DMV, police records, fire & insurance records, data aggregators as well as many other proprietary sources.

What is NMVTIS?

The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) was created through the Federal Anti-Car Theft Act of 1992, to help protect consumers from fraud & unsafe vehicles & to keep stolen vehicles from being resold.

Why did I receive the message 'No Data Available'?

You did not receive a report, & will not be charged, because DMV.com does not have enough information for the VIN you requested. You may see an authorization on your credit card for the amount of the report. This is an authorization only & will be released by DMV.com within 24 hours. Hold times may vary by individual banks.

What is the purpose of NMVTIS?

To learn more about The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS), visit the NMVTIS vehiclehistory.gov website.

Who operates & manages NMVTIS?

The U.S. Department of Justice is responsible for oversight of the implementation & operation of NMVTIS, & works in partnership with the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators (AAMVA). AAMVA has been the operator since 1992. To learn more about NMVTIS visit the vehiclehistory.gov website.

How much will it cost to obtain NMVTIS information on a vehicle?

Cost for NVMTIS vehicle history reports vary & are determined by individual service providers. The Anti-Car Theft Act requires that the system be funded through user fees & not dependent on federal funds. For this reason, NMVTIS has been designed as a fee-for-service system.

What's included in my VIN report?

General Information, such as the Summary, Vehicle Specs, Title Information and more!

1. Get Your VIN Check Report Online

Order a VIN check now to discover your vehicle’s complete history. Whether you are buying a car, selling one or simply interested in learning more about your current vehicle, a VIN check can help. Vehicle identification numbers help record important information about a car, including title history, odometer readings, previous owners and much more. A VIN check puts these important details at your fingertips, helping you make informed decisions. Get yours now to access your vehicle’s record online.

2. By Mail

Some people prefer to complete their car-related transactions by mail. However, in the case of a VIN check, there is little reason to use conventional mail to run a car background check. Still, if you have access to a by-mail VIN check service and would like to use it to get information about a vehicle, there are a few factors to take into account. First, make sure you are not on a tight deadline if you are completing a task by mail, since this method usually takes longer than completing a task online. Second, be sure the payment method and information you provide are accurate, as any errors will cause delays.

3. In Person at the DMV Office

Depending on your state, you may be able to request a VIN check in person at the DMV. However, there are a few drawbacks to using this method. The primary one is that DMV lines are usually long and slow, so visiting a DMV location to perform a task you can simply do online will require more time and energy. Additionally, the VIN checks available through the DMV are often not as thorough as the ones available online. Many DMVs provide basic information about a car on their VIN checks, while online services pull together information from various sources, including the federal government and private companies.


Perform a VIN lookup in California on any car you are interested in purchasing or selling to ensure that the vehicle is completely reliable. The VIN number lookup can provide you with information about any car accidents in which the vehicle has been involved, a comprehensive safety report for the vehicle, whether there are any recalls or defects and much more. This report can be very helpful for both buyers and sellers of a car, and for anyone interested in learning more about a current vehicle.

How to Perform a VIN Number Check Online in California

An immediate VIN lookup in California be provided to you if you order the report online. This VIN code lookup allows you to access important information about the vehicle, including a safety report and a car accident history report, both of which can be used to help you determine whether or not you should purchase a pre-owned car, or whether or not the car is likely to sell. The online ordering method to lookup VIN information provides very up-to-date information, and it is ready immediately after you place your request. Although other methods, such as mailing in a request form, are available in California, you should keep in mind that the online VIN check method is the fastest, and often provides information in the most comprehensible way.

Checking VIN Numbers by Mail in California

Looking up VIN numbers can also be done through the mail, although it takes a longer amount of time than using the online method found here. However, you can receive an official VIN history report that provides important information without placing a request online. This method can be beneficial if you do not have access to the internet, and would rather fill out a physical form to submit.

You may only fill out the Vehicle Record Request form when learning how to check VIN number information if you are the owner of the vehicle, and if you are a certified user. A certified user in the state of California means that you have greater access to the Department of Motor Vehicle’s (DMV) online services. To become a certified user, you must provide information, which includes the following:

  • Your CA driver’s license number
  • Your driver’s license issue date
  • Your date of birth
  • The last four digits of your Social Security Number
  • A valid email address

A VIN number report can be provided once you have been deemed a certified user. To lookup a VIN number, you must fill out the Request for Vehicle Registration Record (also referred to as the INF1125 form) and mail it into the DMV Headquarters address that is located on the form. You can then expect to receive the VIN report in the mail within a couple of weeks. To avoid the wait, click here to start ordering an online VIN report today!

What info is in a California VIN history report?

If you order a VIN number check, you will receive a plethora of up-to-date information regarding the vehicle in question. The information that you will receive will cover everything from how many owners the car has had in the past, to what accidents is has been in, and even what the odometer readings are. Specifically, you can expect to receive the following in your vehicle VIN history report:

  • Accident history
  • Seizure, towing and impound data
  • Open recalls and defects data
  • Safety report
  • Manufacturer info
  • Online sales history records
  • State DMV title brands
  • Theft status
  • Title information
  • Vehicle title problems
  • Odometer readings
  • Vehicle specifications

Why would I need to perform a VIN check in California?

A VIN report is a necessary step before either purchasing or selling a vehicle in the state of California to ensure that the vehicle is up to either your standards or the standards of any potential buyers. The information in the VIN check will allow buyers to research the history of the vehicle to understand how safe it truly is.

An instant online VIN code lookup will provide comprehensive details to anyone interested in purchasing a vehicle, so if you are selling a car, it is advisable that you access your car’s VIN number report and allow any interested buyers to look through it. This can help you to negotiate an appropriate price based on how reliable the car is, and may help you sell the vehicle faster.

How do I locate my vehicle’s VIN number?

The question of how to check a VIN number’s location is very important, because the VIN number is crucial in order for a California VIN history to be provided. Plus, you must keep in mind that checking VIN numbers can be done on all vehicle types, including automobiles, motorcycles, classic cars, RVs and even heavy trucks, and that each vehicle may have the VIN listed in a different location. Regarding the VIN number for a car or an RV, it is generally located in one of two areas:

  • On the driver’s side of the front windshield, in the bottom corner
  • By the latch area of the driver’s door

If you are looking for the VIN location on a motorcycle, you will likely find it around the steering neck or on the motor. Regardless of the type of vehicle, if you cannot find the VIN located on the physical vehicle, it is likely listed on both the car registration documents and the auto insurance card/paperwork for the vehicle.