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Buying a Car? Here's How to Get a Free CARFAX Report

December 9, 2021

If you’re in the market for a used vehicle, it is important to know as much as possible about the car before closing the deal. Many hassles can be avoided by knowing the true history of a car before you buy, and a comprehensive CARFAX Report is the best way to learn these details.

CARFAX Reports are available for all vehicles manufactured since 1981. The reports include information about accident history, service history, open recalls, previous owners, and more.

Obtaining a CARFAX Report before your next automotive purchase can save you both time and money. Although a CARFAX Report typically costs money if acquired individually, there are several ways to get a CARFAX Report or similar report for free.

How to Get a Free CARFAX Report

You may have heard that you can get a free CARFAX report, but do you know how? Luckily, they are very easy to obtain.

Dealerships and car buying websites, such as and AutoTrader, will often include the report with their online vehicle listings. In this case, they have taken on the cost of the CARFAX Report for you to help assist with making a quicker sale.

If you are buying your car from a private seller, you can ask them to provide you with a copy of the CARFAX Report or the VIN number so that you can check it out yourself on the CARFAX website. If you choose to obtain the report yourself, there will be a small cost associated with the service.

There is also the option of doing a free VIN check by entering the VIN number of the car you want to purchase in an online database, such as While these reports will not be as all-encompassing as a CARFAX check, they will contain most of the crucial information needed to help you make a smart purchase decision.

Benefits of a Free CARFAX Report

Getting a free CARFAX Report will help answer many of the questions you may have as well as fill in any unknowns about the car. For example, a CARFAX Report can show you:

  • If the vehicle has a salvage title
  • If the odometer reading is accurate
  • The maintenance and service history of the car in question
  • If the car was ever used as a taxi, police car, or other commercial vehicles
  • Accident history and damage history, including the location of the damage
  • Records of any structural damage or damage repairs
  • How many previous owners the vehicle had and for how long
  • Any manufacturer or extended warranty information
  • If the car was ever reported stolen
  • If a car has ever been flooded
  • If the airbags have ever been deployed
  • If there are any open recalls

All of this information can greatly impact your purchase decision. Even honest car sellers may not have all of the details about a particular vehicle in question!

Another tip: CARFAX can be a useful service even after your vehicle search is complete. Consider signing up for a free CARFAX Car Care account to view and track your vehicle’s service history. You can even set up alerts for recalls and when you are due for your next service.

A CARFAX Report is an invaluable tool in ensuring a smooth purchase of a used car. However, it is not a substitute for having the car inspected by a qualified mechanic and driving the car yourself. A CARFAX Report, an inspection, and a test drive work together so you can feel confident in your purchase.

Ready to Buy?

Now that you know how to free CARFAX Report, you may be ready to buy!

At RRCU, we love to assist car buyers with affordable financing options that best suit you and your family. Our helpful representatives will be happy to answer any questions you may have. 

Click below to learn more about the process of getting a credit union auto loan. Reach out to us to get started!


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