Blog How To Get A Free Vehicle History Report

Nov 24, 2022

What you need to know about vehicle history reports in Canada

old car for sale

You’re in the market for a vehicle, and you think you’ve found the one. It’s the right colour and style, it's in your price range, and you are ready to write up the paperwork. Not so fast.

When you are buying a used car has a few more considerations than buying new. If you are not careful, you could have a lemon on your hands. Before you sign on the dotted line, it's critical that you check the vehicle history report.

Here, we’ll explain the importance of these reports, how to get them, who offers them, and the type of information they provide.

What is a vehicle history report?

A vehicle history report is a document you can obtain when purchasing a used car or transferring car ownership. It provides you with important information about a vehicle’s history. This includes information about ownership, accidents, repairs, and maintenance. You will need the vehicles VIN to get a VIN check report. It is also often referred to as a used car vehicle history report.

What is included in a vehicle history report?

A vehicle history report shows an overview of a vehicle’s history. It can tell you if a vehicle has been in accidents, or had recalls, and provides other information about damages. It is an invaluable resource that can help you decide whether or not the ride is worth purchasing or beginning the process of finding car insurance quotes.

The value of buying a vehicle history report is you will get a thorough overview of the history of the vehicle. The report will include the following information :

  • Accidents or accident free status
  • Total loss, salvage, or rebuilds
  • Theft
  • Structural damage, weather damage
  • Vehicle repair and maintenance records
  • Open recalls
  • Odometer reading
  • Airbag deployments
  • Registration records
  • U.S. and Canada import records, U.S. History (if applicable)
  • Car ownership history

How do I get a vehicle history report?

There are a number of ways you can go about getting a vehicle history report :

  • Ask the dealership : If you are buying from a car dealer, simply ask them for a copy.
  • Ask the seller : If a person is selling a car privately, ask them for a copy of the report.
  • Get the report yourself : You can request a VIN report from a number of websites online such as CARFAX.

If a car dealer or private seller is reluctant to provide you with the report or the VIN to check it yourself, this is a red flag. There may be something wrong with the car they don’t want you to know about.

mechanic doing checking over a car

How much is a vehicle history report?

CARFAX is the premier company to buy a vehicle history report. You can purchase a CARFAX Canada verified report for $54.95 plus tax. You can also purchase a CARFAX Canada claims report for $39.95 plus tax. But, this report does not include a lien search.

It is often worth paying for the report, compared to potential repair bills and additional car maintenance for a damaged car.

Can I get a free vehicle history report?

Yes, its possible to get a completely free vehicle history report. Often, the seller of a vehicle will provide them along with the used vehicle information package.

As an alternative, there are a number of websites that offer free versions of history reports. However, these free reports are limited in the information they provide. You’ll get a snapshot of the car’s history, but not the entire story.

Where can I get a free vehicle history report?

Here are the websites where you can get a free vehicle history report online in Canada :

You may also want to check out the Canadian Government recall database. You can enter any make, model, and year of a specific vehicle. The report will show you any recalls that should be done.


Vehicle history report FAQs

Yes. It is common for buyers to ask private sellers for the vehicle history report. You can also get a free report online using the VIN. Tread carefully if a seller is hesitant to provide you with a report.

No. You cannot use a licence plate to check the vehicle history because licence plates can be moved from vehicle to vehicle. You will need the VIN to get the report.

CARFAX is the leader when it comes to vehicle history reports. It provides the most thorough reports and has a strong reputation within the auto industry.

Yes. Vehicle history reports are a legitimate document that plays an important role in the sale of a vehicle. It benefits sellers and buyers. As a seller, it shows your vehicle is legitimate and it can help you sell you vehicle quicker. As a buyer, it can let you know if there are any issuesbefore you decide to purchase it.

Don’t forget to check the vehicle history report

Whether you are looking to buy or sell a used car, getting a vehicle history report is recommended. The report ensures both parties are well aware of the vehicle's condition and history before agreeing to the sale. Don’t forget to contact us for your car insurance to make sure you are saving on your rates.