Skip to content
vin audit vs carfax


VinAudit and Carfax are both vehicle history report services, but they have some differences. Carfax is a more well-known and established brand, providing comprehensive reports that include information from various sources. VinAudit, on the other hand, is a more affordable option that focuses on data from the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS).

Table of Contents

    Vinaudit vs Carfax

    There are some differences between Vinaudit and Carfax that customers should be aware of. Vinaudit focuses specifically on title records, accident history, and salvage records.  Carfax offers a broader range of information, including details about previous owners, service records, and mileage.

    The cost of the reports:  Vinaudit offers more affordable pricing options compared to Carfax. Carfax charges a higher fee for their reports, they include additional features such as vehicle market value and ownership cost calculations. Vinaudit primarily focuses on providing detailed vehicle history information at a more budget-friendly price point.

    Better than VinAudit is CARFAX. CARFAX is a well-known provider of vehicle history reports and has been in the industry for over three decades. CARFAX reports include information about accidents, flood damage, and even potential odometer fraud. With access to over 22 billion records, CARFAX offers a comprehensive solution for those looking to get a detailed history of a vehicle’s past. While CARFAX does come at a higher price point compared to VinAudit, its extensive coverage and reputation in the industry make it a popular alternative among car buyers and sellers.

    PRICEVinAudit charges $9.99 for a single report, $19.99 when buying 5 reports at a time, and $29.99 for 10 reports. The price to access a VinAudit report is significantly lower compared to other providers in the market. 
    Payment is non-refundable, except when an exception is approved by a representative of All materials and services on this site are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without warranty of any kind, either express or implied.
    REFUND POLICYCARFAX may offer a refund under certain conditions, primarily related to their “Buyback Guarantee” program. However, for specific services, products, or report purchases, the refund policy might differ.
    Payment are non-refundable, except when an exception is approved by a representative of All materials and services on this site are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without warranty of any kind, either express or implied.
    PAYMENTS METHODSCarfax accepts Visa, Mastercard, Amex, discovery, Paypal and Amazon Pay.
    Visa, Mastercard, Amex, and Discovery card only. Vinaudit approved payment processor is and WePay.
    ADVANTAGESUnique maintenance records, highly trusted brand, 22 billion records, a trusted network of dealers, better refund policy, and more payment methods accepted.Cheaper price
    Trustpilot review scoresBad with 1.7/ 5 StarsEXCELLENT with 4.4/ 5 Stars

    Benefits of VinAudit

    VinAudit offers a comprehensive database that provides detailed information about vehicles. VinAudit can help uncover important details about a car’s history and potential issues. By accessing the VinAudit database, consumers can verify the accuracy of a vehicle’s title records, accident history, and even its market value. 

    The key benefit of using VinAudit is the cost-effective nature of their services. Compared to other vehicle history report providers like Carfax, VinAudit offers a more affordable option without compromising on quality. 

    Benefits Of CARFAX

    CARFAX’s benefits, including its comprehensive data, VIN decoder, and dealer network, position it as a valuable resource for anyone looking to buy a used car. CARFAX benefits include an extensive database and access to accurate and up-to-date information. CARFAX enables customers to make informed decisions by providing reports that include vital information such as past accidents, title transfers, and service records. Buyers can gain valuable insights into the condition and reliability of a vehicle before proceeding with a purchase. CARFAX’s VIN decoder allows users to decode a vehicle identification number (VIN) to access specific information about the car, such as its make, model, and year.

    CARFAX is its trusted network of dealers. CARFAX partners with a wide range of dealerships, both large and small, to ensure that customers have access to quality, reliable vehicles. By partnering with CARFAX, dealers demonstrate their commitment to transparency and building trust with potential buyers. Customers who choose to purchase a car through CARFAX’s dealer network can enjoy added benefits such as vehicle inspection reports and extended warranties. 

    NMVTIS vs Carfax vs VinAudit

    NMVTIS is a government-run database that collects and maintains information on vehicles. Carfax and VinAudit use data from NMVTIS as part of their vehicle history reports. However, Carfax also gathers information from various other sources, providing a more comprehensive report compared to VinAudit, which primarily relies on NMVTIS data

    NMVTIS, Carfax, and VinAudit are three popular platforms that provide vehicle history reports, each offering its own unique set of features and benefits. When it comes to VinAudit, it provides a comprehensive vehicle history report that includes information on title records, accident and theft records, as well as market value and ownership cost. Vinaudit car report costs are an affordable option compared to other providers in the market.

    It should be noted that NMVTIS reports may not include all the detailed information provided by commercial providers like Carfax and VinAudit.

    REPORT ACCURACY AND RELIABILITY of both carfax and vinaudit:

    Both VinAudit and CarFax aim to provide accurate and reliable vehicle history reports. However, due to CarFax’s wider range of data sources, some users perceive CarFax reports as being more detailed and reliable, especially for complex histories.

    What is included in a VinAudit report?

    VinAudit is another service that provides vehicle history reports, similar to CARFAX but often at a lower price point. While the specific details might vary depending on the individual vehicle and its history, a typical VinAudit report includes:

    1. Title Records: Information about any changes to the vehicle’s title, possible title washing, salvaged or junked titles, and other title-related concerns.
    2. Accident History: Details about any accidents or damages that have been reported.
    3. Odometer Readings: Information to identify potential odometer rollbacks or discrepancies in mileage.
    4. Theft and Recovery: Data regarding whether the vehicle has been reported stolen and subsequently recovered.
    5. Salvage & Reconstruction: If the vehicle was ever salvaged or reconstructed after a major incident.
    6. Lien & Repossession: Details about any liens on the vehicle and if it has ever been repossessed.
    7. Vehicle Specifications: Basic data about the car, including make, model, engine type, etc.
    8. Safety Ratings: Information about how the vehicle model performs in safety tests.
    9. Sale Records: Data about past sales of the vehicle, if available.
    10. Title Problem Checks: Flags for various title problems such as lemons, flood damage, etc.
    11. Vehicle Use and Events: Details about how the vehicle was used, like taxi or rental service, police use, etc., and any significant events like auctions or emissions inspections.
    12. Recalls and Warranty: Information about recalls that apply to the vehicle model and any active or expired warranties.
    13. Emission Inspection Results: Depending on the state and its requirements.

    It’s important to note that, as with any vehicle history report service, VinAudit may not capture all incidents or details about a vehicle. Some events may not have been reported or are missing from the databases VinAudit uses. A comprehensive mechanic inspection and personal due diligence are always recommended when purchasing a used vehicle.

    Comparing DATA SOURCES AND REPORT COMPREHENSIVENESS of both Carfax and VinAudit

    VinAudit sources its data primarily from the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS). CarFax, on the other hand, uses a broader range of data sources, including insurance companies, repair shops, and law enforcement agencies. Consequently, CarFax reports are often more comprehensive, containing detailed histories, including maintenance and repair records.

    What is included in a CARFAX report?

    A CARFAX report is designed to provide potential buyers of pre-owned vehicles with important information about the car’s history. While the exact details might vary depending on the individual vehicle and its history, a typical CARFAX report might include:

    1. Title Information: Including any records of salvaged or junked titles.
    2. Accident History: Details about any accidents or damages reported.
    3. Odometer Readings: To check for potential odometer rollback or mileage discrepancies.
    4. Ownership History: The number of past owners, personal vs. commercial use, and potential leases.
    5. Service Records: Maintenance and repair records if available.
    6. Lemon Status: Whether the car was ever declared a lemon.
    7. Vehicle Use: If the car was used as a taxi, rental vehicle, or police car.
    8. Recalls and Warranties: Information on any open recalls or warranties associated with the vehicle.
    9. Theft and Recovery Records: If the car has been reported stolen.
    10. Flood, Hail, and Fire Damage: Any reports of damage from natural events.
    11. Lien Status: To check if the car is still under finance or if there’s any lien against it.
    12. State Inspection Results: Depending on the state.
    13. Emission Inspection Results: Again, dependent on the state and its requirements.
    14. Airbag Deployment: Whether the car’s airbags have been deployed.
    15. Other Important Details: Such as structural damages, repossession records, etc.

    It’s worth noting that while CARFAX reports can provide a lot of valuable information, they may not capture everything. Some incidents might not get reported, and as such, they won’t appear in the CARFAX. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to get a pre-purchase inspection from a trusted mechanic when buying a used car.

    Pricing of vinaudit vs carfax

    In terms of pricing, VinAudit offers a more affordable option. A single VinAudit report costs significantly less than a CarFax report. This price difference makes VinAudit a more accessible choice for users who need basic vehicle history information.


    VinAudit charges $9.99 for a single report, $19.99 when buying 5 reports at a time, and $29.99 for 10 reports. The price to access a VinAudit report is significantly lower compared to other providers in the market. 


    Carfax charges $44.99 for a single report, $64.99 when buying 3 reports at a time and $99.99 for 5 reports.

    What payment methods does VinAudit accept?

    Visa, Mastercard, Amex, and Discovery card only. Vinaudit-approved payment processor is and WePay.

    What payment methods does Carfax accept?

    Carfax accepts Visa, Mastercard, Amex, discovery, Paypal and Amazon pay.

    What is the VinAudit refund policy?

    Payment are non-refundable, except when an exception is approved by a representative of All materials and services on this site are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without warranty of any kind, either express or implied.

    What is the Carfax refund policy?

    CARFAX may offer a refund under certain conditions, primarily related to their “Buyback Guarantee” program. However, for specific services, products, or report purchases, the refund policy might differ.


    Customer reviews for both VinAudit and CarFax vary. Users of VinAudit appreciate its affordability and basic report features. CarFax users often cite the depth and reliability of the information provided in their reports, despite the higher cost.

    What are VINAUDIT customer service REVIEW SCORES?

    Vinaudit customer service is rated Excellent with a score of 4.4 stars with 118 reviews on Trustpilot as of October 30, 2023

    Summary of vinaudit NEGATIVE Reviews:

    Summary of VinAudit Reviews

    1. A user reported that VinAudit provided incorrect information, labeling a salvaged motorcycle with a $7k repair bill as “clean”. (Sep 7, 2023)
    2. Jimmy Hendricks claimed that the information offered by VinAudit was very basic, equivalent to a simple Google search. (Dec 19, 2016)
    3. John Smith called VinAudit a scam. He experienced technical issues and didn’t receive the report he paid for. (Jun 22, 2022)
    4. Collin Scott believed that VinAudit had agents posing as potential buyers to make private vehicle sellers buy their report. (Jan 7, 2021)
    • VinAudit’s Reply: The company refuted the scam claims and stressed its legitimacy.
    1. A user named Sleepless opined that VinAudit is a waste of time and money, as they only provide basic vehicle specifications. (Dec 25, 2014)
    2. Robert Binz Jr found that the information from VinAudit was easily accessible via a Google search. (Feb 3, 2020)
    3. John criticized VinAudit for delivering an incomplete report, lacking owner history. (Oct 3, 2020)
    • VinAudit’s Reply: The company apologized and offered assistance.
    1. Will felt scammed by VinAudit, especially after being logged out of the system halfway through his searches. (Aug 8, 2018)
    2. Jay believed VinAudit was a scam, suspecting fake agents pose as potential buyers. (May 14, 2022)
    • VinAudit’s Reply: The company reaffirmed its legitimacy and asked for evidence to investigate.
    1. migaczone kanał expressed disappointment in the value provided for the cost, labeling VinAudit a scam. (Feb 8, 2020)
    2. bill evans found VinAudit’s records incomplete compared to Autocheck and Carfax. (Aug 12, 2014)
    3. Denis Hil said VinAudit did not work for Canadian cars and advised people to stay away. (Feb 26, 2023)
    4. DG considered the VinAudit report informationless and not worth the price. (Nov 14, 2014)
    5. Jonathan Brett found VinAudit completely worthless compared to Carfax. (Feb 17, 2015)
    6. Jeff Snowden regretted using VinAudit after learning his car had been in a prior accident not reported by the company. (Jan 9, 2017)
    7. ily555 found discrepancies between VinAudit’s report and Carfax’s, making VinAudit seem worthless. (Jul 19, 2014)

    Overall sentiment: The majority of the reviews are negative, with many users feeling scammed or deceived by the lack of accurate information provided by VinAudit, especially when compared to competitors like Carfax.

    carfax report

    What are CARFAX customer service REVIEW SCORES?

    Carfax customer service is rated Excellent with a score of 1.7 stars with 320 reviews on Trustpilot as of October 30, 2023.

    Summary of CARFAX NEGATIVE Reviews:

    1. Multiple reviewers are frustrated with errors in mileage reporting by CARFAX. They’ve had difficulty rectifying these mistakes and don’t get timely responses from the company.
    2. There are complaints of unsolicited low offers for vehicles. One user has taken legal action against such practices.
    3. Several users discovered accidents on their CARFAX reports only after purchasing their vehicles, implying that CARFAX may not be a reliable source for accident information.
    4. Users have noticed discrepancies between CARFAX’s information and other official sources, like rental companies or service records.
    5. Complaints also revolve around purchasing packages from CARFAX, where unused reports expire after a short time.
    6. One reviewer had a bad experience with a dealership and its misrepresentation of an employee discount program. Though related to a dealership, the review emphasizes the need for buyers to have accurate information.
    7. Some users found out that damages or issues with their vehicles weren’t reported on CARFAX, suggesting that the report’s reliability is questionable.
    8. One user mentions missing registration data from over three years ago and feels that CARFAX is only after money without delivering updated, accurate reports.

    Overall, the reviews highlight issues with inaccurate or missing information in CARFAX reports, poor customer service, and concerns about the company’s reliability and practices.

    What Are Some Red Flags in a VinAudit Report?

    When reviewing a VinAudit report, there are certain red flags to watch out for that may indicate potential issues with the vehicle. When reviewing a VinAudit report or any other vehicle history report, certain indicators can suggest potential problems with the vehicle in question. Here are some red flags to watch out for in a VinAudit report:

    1. Title Issues: Look for terms like “Salvage,” “Junk,” “Rebuilt,” or “Flood.” These indicate that the vehicle has undergone significant damage or was deemed a total loss by an insurance company.
    2. Odometer Discrepancies: If there are inconsistencies in the mileage recorded at different times, it might suggest odometer tampering.
    3. Accident History: While not all accidents are deal-breakers, a history of multiple accidents or severe accidents can be concerning.
    4. Multiple Owners: If a vehicle has changed hands many times in a short period, it might indicate recurring issues that each owner wanted to escape.
    5. Liens: A lien means that there’s an outstanding loan on the vehicle. You’d want to ensure any liens are cleared before purchasing.
    6. Stolen Vehicle: The report might indicate if a vehicle was reported stolen at any point.
    7. Recall Information: Unaddressed recalls can be safety concerns.
    8. Flood Damage: Water damage can lead to long-term issues, especially concerning a vehicle’s electronics.
    9. Airbag Deployment: This suggests the vehicle was in a significant accident.
    10. Structural Damage: Indicates that the frame or structure of the vehicle has been compromised.
    11. Failed Inspections: Repeated failures during state inspections can be a sign of underlying issues.
    12. Usage History: If the vehicle was used as a rental, taxi, or police vehicle, it might have undergone more wear and tear than a privately owned car.
    13. Registration Renewal Failures: This could indicate that the car had issues that prevented it from being road-legal.

    Remember, while these red flags can be indicative of potential issues, they don’t necessarily mean the vehicle is a bad purchase. It’s essential to use the information in the report as a guide and get a comprehensive inspection by a trusted mechanic before making a decision.

    What Are Some Red Flags in a CARFAX Report?

    A CARFAX report can provide valuable information about a vehicle’s history. Some red flags or potential warning signs to look out for in a CARFAX report include:

    1. Title Issues: This includes salvaged titles, which indicate the vehicle was declared a total loss by an insurance company, and rebuilt titles, suggesting the car was reconstructed after significant damage.
    2. Odometer Rollback: Discrepancies in the mileage recorded can indicate that the odometer has been tampered with.
    3. Accident History: Details about accidents, especially if severe, can be a cause for concern.
    4. Multiple Owners: A vehicle that has changed hands multiple times in a short period might be problematic.
    5. Rental or Fleet Use: Cars used as rentals or in fleets might have more wear and tear.
    6. Frame Damage: Indicates the vehicle’s structural integrity might have been compromised.
    7. Airbag Deployment: A sign that the vehicle was involved in a significant collision.
    8. Recalls: If there are open recalls that haven’t been addressed, it might pose safety concerns.
    9. Lien Information: If there’s a lien on the vehicle, the seller should have appropriate paperwork showing it’s cleared before selling.
    10. Failed Emissions Tests: Repeated failures can indicate underlying mechanical problems.
    11. Repossession Records: This might not indicate a problem with the vehicle itself, but it’s worth noting.
    12. Flood or Fire Damage: Both can lead to long-term issues, even if the vehicle looks fine now.
    13. Regular Maintenance Records Missing: If the report doesn’t show consistent maintenance, the vehicle might not have been well taken care of.
    14. Usage for Commercial Purposes: If the car was used for commercial purposes like as a taxi or delivery vehicle, it might have more wear than a personal-use vehicle.

    While these red flags do not necessarily mean you should avoid the car entirely, they do suggest that you should proceed with caution. If you’re considering purchasing a vehicle with any of these red flags, it’s a good idea to have it thoroughly inspected by a trusted mechanic before finalizing the purchase.

    VinAudit Report Sample & Breakdown

    CARFAX Report Sample & Breakdown

    What Are Some Carfax AND VinAudit Alternatives?

    When looking for alternatives to Carfax and VinAudit, there are a few options worth considering. One such alternative is AutoCheck. Similar to VinAudit, AutoCheck provides a comprehensive vehicle history report that includes details on title records, accident history, and more. With a database of over 21 billion records, AutoCheck offers extensive coverage and can be a reliable choice for those seeking a reliable alternative to VinAudit. However, it’s important to note that the pricing structure for AutoCheck varies depending on the subscription plan chosen, so it’s essential to compare the costs before making a decision.

    Here is a list of VEHICLE HISTORY REPORT alternatives:

    1. AutoCheck: Operated by Experian, AutoCheck provides a vehicle history report that includes accident data, title information, odometer readings, and more. It also offers a unique “AutoCheck Score” to help users understand a vehicle’s predicted reliability.
    2. Vincheckup provides good value for the price with comprehensive reports. Their goal is to introduce an unparalleled level of transparency into the realm of used vehicles. Uses Insurance Database, NMVTIS database, National Vin Database, and over 60 more data points to produce their vehicle history reports. Recommended low-cost option providing very complete reports for only $14.95 
    3. vPIC: vPIC is a service backed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that provides information about recalls, thefts, and other issues related to a specific VIN.
    4. NMVTIS (National Motor Vehicle Title Information System): It’s a U.S. Department of Justice database that offers title data, odometer readings, and salvage or total loss information. Some third-party providers access NMVTIS to provide reports to consumers.
    5. Offers free preliminary reports that include basic information about accidents, titles, and more. They also offer more detailed paid reports.
    6. InstaVIN: They provide vehicle history and title reports, including salvage, junk, towing, and insurance total loss records.
    7. Cyclevin: Specifically for motorcycles, this service offers history reports detailing past accidents, thefts, and other relevant events.
    8. EpicVIN: Provides comprehensive vehicle history reports including data on accidents, thefts, recalls, sales, and more.

    It’s essential to note that while these services provide valuable information, no vehicle history report is exhaustive. Always combine the information from these reports with a thorough mechanical inspection when considering purchasing a used vehicle.

    Related Post: Our VinAudit Review