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What to Know About Sharing Your VIN When Selling Your Old Car

Marc Skirvin
Marc Skirvin

Table of Contents

If you own a worn-down vehicle and you’ve been keeping it in your garage for some time, you might want to consider selling your car for scrap value. When putting it up for listing, you will have to provide your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to register or sell it and find an interested buyer successfully.

However, not everyone knows about their car’s VIN and isn’t familiar with its importance, especially when looking forward to getting rid of their junk car. Keep reading below to learn more about your VIN to give you an easier time handling your transaction with a prospect.

What is a VIN?

A Vehicle Identification Number comprises a combination of 17 letters and numbers. Every car ever manufactured by companies has its own unique VIN, which notes all the vehicle’s details, from its brand to its paint job.

It acts as the fingerprint of your car to help people, specifically dealers and mechanics, discover any vehicle’s specific information they need through a computer system. If a particular car does not contain a VIN, a new system cannot work properly, and it will be tough for you to acquire cash for your junk car.

Where to Find Your VIN 

If you want to know where to find your car’s VIN, you should start by looking in various places. You can spot it on the lower-left corner of your windshield, inside the door of the driver’s side, or beneath the hood of the car.

During instances where you cannot locate the VIN, you can retrieve the vehicle’s title, registration, and insurance records to get your hands on the VIN. Besides selling your car, you will need your VIN information if you plan to register your vehicle, misplace your car keys, or move to a different state.

Why You Should Share Your VIN with a Buyer

When buyers show interest in the car you’re selling, one of the first things they will do is ask for your VIN to research about it online using a VIN decoder and learn more about its background. Most of the time, people want to know additional details, including who the previous owners are and if your car has been recalled before.

Moreover, if they receive a VIN that’s supposedly for a different car, people will require a VIN to locate the owner of the vehicle involved. If you’re transacting with potential buyers and they ask for your VIN, you should always give it in hopes of receiving cash for your car in return.

How to Decode a VIN 

Every letter and number you can find in a VIN holds an integral role, so you must understand what all of it means. The first three digits stand for the World Manufacturer’s Number, proving the country where the car was built.

For digits 4-8, the information will pertain to the vehicle’s body style, engine type, airbag type, and more. Meanwhile, the 9th digit helps computers verify if the VIN is valid. You can find the car’s model year on its 10th digit, the manufacturing plant number on its 11th, while the 12th-17th digits contain unique serial numbers.


Knowing a Vehicle Identification Number is essential for car buyers and sellers because it helps both parties accomplish deals more efficiently without facing unwanted concerns down the line. If you wish to earn cash for junkers, don’t forget to provide your VIN to an interested buyer to make the transaction faster and hassle-free.

Are you planning to sell your vehicle for scrap in the US? Cash Auto Salvage is a place where you can sell your junk cars in exchange for cash. Get in touch with us today to receive an offer!

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About the Author


Marc is the Co-Founder of Cash Auto Salvage and Director of daily operations. He retired from a leading Internet Marketing company in 2013 and has been involved in the automotive industry ever since.

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