What to Know about Odometer Fraud
What is Odometer Fraud? 😬
This is actually scary when you think about it. 😨
The odometer…the mileage…is a big factor when deciding how valuable a car is. For buyers, a difference of 10,000 miles can make or break the decision to buy. Lower mileage usually means the car is likely to sell for more money.
Higher mileage means the opposite, usually. Check out how to know how long a car should last.
So, when we hear that odometer fraud is on the rise, it concerns all of us. 😞 Carfax reported about it, too, reporting that California saw a 7% increase in odometer rollback. 7%! Nearly half a million incidents of odometer fraud. It’s a crime, by the way.
And that nefarious crime, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation, costs American consumers more than $1 Billion annually. That’s a”b” for billion! 💰💰💰
It’s tricky, but not impossible, to decipher if an odometer has been tampered with.
Capital City Auto Auction runs a KSR report on every vehicle. Dealers are familiar with these; a KSR is a vehicle registration inquiry report which obtains the known mileage from the DMV for any registered vehicle.
Most of our inventory is donated, so you won’t find stolen cars here or cars that have a super sketchy past.
However, fraud does slip through from time to time, hence when an odometer doesn’t align with verified records, you’ll see a “TMU” in the condition report, such as you see in the image.
That stands for “total mileage unknown”. It’s our way of being transparent about a significant part of your bidding strategy.
You may be interested in ways to save money on a used car. (You totally are… come on.)
Tips for Spotting Odometer Fraud
A mechanic can help you inspect the condition of a car and matching it to an appropriate mileage if you have your doubts. It’s impossible to know for sure, without documentation, how many miles a car actually has if the odometer is false, but there are warning signs.
If the odometer reads very low mileage, the tires should be original.
The gas, clutch, and brake pedals should be consistent with the odometer.
Perusing an owner’s manual can help you with benchmarks for when to replace parts. If parts, like spark plugs, filters, fluids, battery, brakes, etc. look like they need replacing and the mileage doesn’t match, something’s up! 🤔
Examine the title for any suspicious tampering.
Bid with Confidence! 💪
Here at Capital City Auto in the capital of California, we’re about great prices, great cars, and full disclosure! 👀
We’re open to dealers only and are online only. You can inspect your vehicles beforehand.
Come get exactly what you need and exactly what you pay for!