Review Snapshot
Pros

This vehicle history report company offers up the same thing as the big boys for a fraction of the price. The product is in-depth and complete in their reporting.

Cons

The website feels like it is hard to find information and the pricing seems hard to locate. The cheapest package is clearly marked but the others are nowhere to be found as far as I could see.

Verdict

Though the product website is a bit frustrating, the product itself has a good reputation from what I could find. They deliver solid information at a very fair price.

Reviewed by:
Rodney Southern : I am a long time writer and have been writing full time online for over seven ye...Member Reputation 22 • 39 active Krits
VINAlert Vehicle History Reports from VINAlert.com
VIN Alert Review
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VINAlert Vehicle History Reports detailed information
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VINAlert.com REVIEW - How does it stack up to the "big boys"?

When it comes to vehicle history reports, Carfax and Autocheck have always come to mind in my household. Now, however, there is another player that offers up VIN checks for a much cheaper price. For only $9.99 under what they call Plan A, you can get a single VIN report. Carfax and Autocheck are generally more expensive. This sounds like a cause for celebration but perhaps we should dig a bit deeper to be sure.

Does VINAlert offer all the same things that the others do?

When you have a product that is lower in price, you usually have a corresponding drop in features or benefits. (Unless you are talking about Walmart Brand Corn Chips…who makes those awesome little golden flavor-nuggets?)

After researching the web extensively, I have come to the conclusion that VINAlert is indeed like the corn chips…as good as the big boys and sometimes a little bit better.

They provide the following results with every vehicle history report (when available):
  • They explain the title history of the car.
  • They check to see if the car is a junk car.
  • They check nearly 8,000 insurance companies.
  • They check if the car was crash-tested.
  • They check for recalls.
  • They check to see if the car was stolen.
  • They check to see if the car was ever used commercially as a rental or taxi.
  • They check over 250 brands.
  • They check odometer readings for signs of abuse or fraud.
All research I have done squares up with what they claim above and very few complaints exist out there on the company.

What complaints are there?

Upon digging quite hard, I found a few complaints here and there from a while back that were seemingly from the same guy on several different websites. The complaint was basically that the company gave recurring charges to his account and gave him a false phone number.

Someone from VINAlert.com actually responded to these complaints in various places offering the guy a full refund. I could find no response after that. As for the phone number, it is to VINAlert.com (I dialed it) and it is in working order. It appears the complaint was an isolated incident or a fraudulent claim—it is not clear which.

Short of this, I was unable to find any other complaints about them. A couple of forum posts mentioned that they did not always have all the information mentioned in the brochure, but clearly not every car applies to all those situations. It stands to reason that odometer fraud will show up only when there is odometer fraud.

What of the positive experiences?

The truth is, a vehicle history report is not exactly the type of program that will draw in rave reviews of a positive nature. Not many people get hyped about an awesome VIN report. That said, there are plenty of people out there saying the price makes it worth it. It seems to be on par with the other two big vehicle history report companies and possible a step ahead because of the lower price tag.

What stands out to me is the lack of poor reports online about it. While a vehicle history report is not one to draw compliments, it is a magnet and a half for complaints, you would think. Still, I found only a handful of people that had anything bad to say at all.

Some personal pet peeves

While some people might find this picky, I did find a few things that I did not like about the website. I spent a good deal of time surfing around to the various parts of the website to see if the links were good. For whatever reasons, the links all responded rather slowly and the site felt layered in some way.

In other words, I felt as though I had to go through several links to get to what I was looking for. Even the FAQ section was layered and only put a few of the questions right out front.

When it came to pricing, only package A was available to choose as far as I could see. I never did find the rest of the pricing options on site.

These are no big deal and certainly not cause for me to say to stay away, but they are minor annoyances to me. Something as important as pricing should be upfront and clearly transparent in my opinion. That is just my personal feelings.

Conclusion

While the website is not my favorite as far as moving around, everything else I found about the product was right on point. I certainly would not pay the extra money for the others after finding out about this product. It seems well worth the $9.99 to give me some peace of mind when I buy a car.

Date Reviewed: March 12, 2012, 10:43 pm
Reviewed by Rodney Southern
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