In 1986, CARFAX started with the desire to be the authoritative source of information regarding the history of used cars for buyers and sellers. Years later, CARFAX has achieved its vision in North America, with the most comprehensive history report database available for cars and light trucks.
Millions of consumers visit CARFAX every year to research whether they are in the process of selling or buying a car. A history report can include information like:
Over 100,000 data sources, including motor vehicle agencies, police and fire departments, auctions, car rental agencies, and collision repair shops send CARFAX information about used vehicles.
Keep reading for pros and cons, plus CARFAX reviews from real users.
Vehicle history reports can be obtained on used cars and trucks from 1981 or later, using the VIN number located on the vehicle in question. The VIN (vehicle identification number) is a 17-digit number is typically found on the side of the driver's door below the steering wheel.
CARFAX Lemon Check Reports help used car buyers to make smart financial decisions and avoid buying a branded or salvaged titled vehicle for a bad price.
CARFAX vehicle report fees range from one report for $39.99 to $99.99 for six reports.
A unique CARFAX guarantee helps used car buyers with peace of mind when it comes to shopping for a pre-owned vehicle.
If you get a CARFAX vehicle report that doesn’t have a branded title reported, then purchase a car which turns out to have a branded title issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles, then CARFAX may buy back the car for the full purchase price. This is a great way to add value and trust to their service.
CARFAX offers a free history-based valuation with your zip code and VIN or license plate number. This valuation takes into account info from the car’s history without making you pay for the full report. While services like Kelley Blue Book take into account the make, model, year, and special features, CARFAX takes into account things like previous use, number of owners, accident history, registration history, and open recalls.
You can search for your next car on CarFax.com, which includes thousands of used and certified pre-owned car listings from local dealerships. Each listing includes a free CARFAX report, so consumers can search and filter results by a number of factors, including details from the vehicle’s history report. You can choose to find a car that has only had one owner or one with no previous accidents.
Search cars with service records or lease only. Narrow down the results until you get the exact car that fits your needs. Searches are done by your local area with an up to 500-mile radius.
You can also use the myCARFAX app on your mobile device to keep track of when you need to have maintenance performed on your car. Use your car's VIN number on the app and pull up service records, schedules for maintenance, and information on recalls.
CARFAX will even alert you when your car is due to be serviced and help you find a mechanic nearby with suggestions and consumer reviews of each repair shop.
While there are lots of free tools for car shoppers to use at carfax.com, vehicle history reports are not free.
How much do CARFAX reports cost?
While you can save money when you purchase multiple reports, unlimited reports are only available for partner dealerships, not for private users.
Used cars listed for sale with CARFAX all include a free vehicle history report. Additionally, many car dealers and car finder sites provide free reports to car shoppers, including:
However, many car finders and dealerships offer a free vehicle history report with their shopping service, including the following:
The majority of these complaints appear to be with advertising and sales issues and problems with CARFAX's products and services.
We have had to use this a few times while buying and selling our cars. It's nice to have the information available.
Such a handy tool to use to make sure our car was legit when we purchased out of state vehicle.
I used this it’s when looking for a mustang but the website made it hard to find exactly what I want and every car was very expensive.
When I look at buying a used vehicle, I always ask for the carfax. It is a trusted source to know the history of the vehiclex
Has the largest variety of cars. If you don't want to break the bank, this is where you want to look.
Don’t get a car without one. Honest and reliable. We were able to easily access information and make informed decisions. Protection from lying salespeople
Carfax is the best thing you can use when researching a used car. They have several different payment options that work with anyone's budget. With our last carfax report I found issues that the seller was not disclosing. It gives you a complete vehicle history report. Won't buy another used car without getting a carfax report first.
Used CarFax to purchase my latest car. Seeing the in depth reporting helped me make the most difficult decision of purchasing a vehicle that wasn't gonna be a lemon with hidden problems.
Rommie Bishop III
Carfax was great in helping me gain a understanding of what how much I should pay for the Subaru Outback I was looking for in 2019. Paired with Kelley Bluebook, I was pretty confident in the pricing I should expect and was able to find a great deal. They aren't totally comprehensive in their maintenance logs, but that's expected when the owner does self-maintenance or similar things.
We use Car Fax for all of your vehicles. It helps us make sure that we are getting a good vehicle and that there are no major issues with the vehicle.
We got a great car assuming the carfax was accurate. No problems with it so we are gaining trust with these reports. So far so good!
When we were looking for a used truck for our daughter this came in very handy to tell us everything we need to know about the vehicle.
Love using carfax before a potential car purchase. It’s nice to feel informed and they do a great job covering all their bases
I always check CarFax before making a purchase to make sure I know all about a car I am going to buy. It gives me peace of mind going into the purchase.
Nothing but great things to say about CarFax. It is an invaluable tool about car histories that help you avoid car buying pitfalls. Their information is critically helpful, comprehensive and easy to use and read. It would be foolish to buy a car without CarFax as a tool to safeguard yourself. Smartest thing I ever did.
CarFax works great. They have so many options to choose from and the cars are really good prices.
We were happy with the peace of mind having a carfax report provided us when we were recently purchasing our most recent car.
I feel like Carfax and all of these companies that are supposed to give you a report on your car or a waste of money I have a car repaired after an accident and found out that the person had taken it to a junkyard and fix it themselves which is something the report will never tell you so you’re always taking a chance
I used CarFax when I am looking for cars near to where I live. They are a trustworthy company and have up to date listings of cars being on sale in multiple locations.
Love car fax use it at work all the time. Very helpful site when making sure cars don’t have any major issues
By using Carfax was able to weigh the risk of the car I was thinking about buying. Helped me make an informed decision.
I really loved the information provided and its helped with buying and selling our cars
I love checking CarFax before buying a car. It gives me important information I need to make an informed decision.
I enjoyed getting background on the cars I’m looking at. I’m grateful to Carfax for providing this service.
Carfax is a great idea but unfortunately is very unreliable as many agencies don't report damage to Carfax.
Such a great tool when purchasing a used vehicle. I would never buy without checking this first.
CARFAX is super easy to work with! In no time i found a car within my price range!
i've used before....information was very useful in researching a used car's history
Love this company they tell you everything you need to know about the vehicle you about to purchase if it's a good deal or if it's been wrecked how many people had it and etc.
Never buy without getting your CarFax. Saved me from getting ripped off by a less then reputable used car dealership. Do your homework and always ask for the CarFax.
I love the convenience of CarFax and I believe the company delivers what it promises. No issues out of them ever.
We appreciate the services provided via Carfax. When shopping for vehicles we always check or ask to see the Carfax report.
Carfax has helped me tremendously in finding my first car. Many companies did i visited sold the cars "as is" and it was important to my parents to see the carfax. When viewing the carfax, i was able to see the truth behind the cars i was looking to purchase. The carfax helped me steer away from cars that had their airbags deployed, been in accidents, and other things i was looking to avoid.
had took get a check on a car I was buying it's really accurate.
Great easy site. Trustworthy. Knowledgeable. Easy site to navigate
I found Carfax really helpful when I was looking for a new SUV especially the car history. It helped me feel more confident in my purchase knowing the accident/damage history beforehand. They also email me occasionally with updates on my car’s mileage, resale value, and when I need to go in to get an oil change—a really nice feature I wasn’t expecting!
This site always has the car or truck I'm looking for and the information is always up to date. I have used them four times to purchase vehicles and they were spot on with the look and the price and the way the vehicles condition were in. They are my favorite site.
I'm just looking to buy a car and I like the deal ratings and car information.
Found the exact car we wanted at a great price. Carfax report was right on.
I've used Cargurus when it came to car shopping. IUS890616RH6ed carfax to check car record and car gurus to see what the market looked like ink my area.
Andrea C Moran-Melendez
Super reliable and helpful I have been using it in my search to find my first car and I honestly would not use anything else to do so because as a teen looking for affordable used options I want to make sure that what I am getting is safe and secure.
Easy to use to get information needed when we have looked into buying cars. Very helpful and informative.
CarFax is always a great tool to use when you are looking to buy a car. It helps you identify if a car has been maintained or had any accidents.
CarFax is an awesome way to research vehicles, especially ones that you're interested in purchases. All the facts about the vehicle's history is listed right there to help you make a decision. Awesome site!
This website is pretty good. It's user-friendly and gives you great information. I like being able to know the truth and feel like a PI in the car world.
I don't love the selection when I use this service. It is the only place to find some of the cars which is nice to find unique ones.
Very expensive and practically useless! Bought a vehicle based on its car fax but it failed to mention it was more than small damage
I definitely recommend getting a CarFax when buying a used car. CarFax gives you detailed information about the maintenance history of the car and you can see if it has been in an accident or has a salvaged title.
I think Carfax has a monopoly on the market and a lot rides on their reports but a lot of the time they are missing key info and can be misleading. They are unfortunately a necessary evil when searching for a car.
I've used Carfax for vehicle evaluation and to ultimately decide on whether or not to buy a car. I purchased our GMC Yukon XL mostly based on the Carfax.