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OMVIC Blog: Car Buying Tips

Understanding CARFAX Canada's Vehicle History Report

Feb 5

Written by: OMVIC Communications
Friday, February 5, 2021  RssIcon

A CARFAX Canada Vehicle History Report (VHR) is essential for anyone buying a used car. Knowing a vehicle’s history helps you determine its safety and value. It will also let you know if you need to take any additional steps. For example, a history report may identify if the vehicle was in an accident, prompting you to ensure it gets repaired. A VHR also helps you understand the vehicle’s maintenance history, so you know how well it has been cared for and its overall condition. This information offers peace of mind and can be helpful when negotiating a fair price. This month, we’re focusing on how to understand the CARFAX Canada VHR. In this post, we go over the differences between a CARFAX Canada and a UVIP and summarize how the VHR can help consumers. In the remaining weeks, we will speak to Shawn Vording, Vice President of Sales at CARFAX Canada, and get him to explain each section of a VHR in detail.

What’s the difference between a UVIP and a CARFAX Canada VHR?

A UVIP provides information about a vehicle, including its make, model and year. It also shows its ownership history, branding and whether there is an Ontario registered lien on it.

CARFAX Canada VHRs offers information you cannot find on a UVIP, including:

  • Accident and damage information: a VHR may tell you if an accident occurred, and if applicable, details from police-reported accidents (for example: “minor damage involving right front impact with another motor vehicle”), the repair estimate and claim amount.
  • Service records: knowing how well the vehicle was maintained throughout its lifetime will give you a sense of its condition, which will help you determine its safety and value.
  • Recalls: this information will tell you if there is a potential safety issue or defect. A report may also include the details of the recall and identify the remedy proposed by the manufacturer.
  • Stolen status: the VHR alerts you if the vehicle is currently reported stolen.
  • Badges: Badges are unique to CARFAX Canada VHRs. They identify a used vehicle’s assets, increasing the car’s value. Assets like “low kilometres,” “one owner,” “top condition,” and “accident-free” are good signs.

Is it better to buy a report directly from CARFAX Canada rather than from a dealership?

Either is fine. However, if you receive a CARFAX Canada VHR from a third party, check the report date. It shouldn’t be over 6 months old. You should ensure you’re seeing the most up-to-date information.


Next Steps

If you have a CARFAX Canada report and need help to understand it, contact the CARFAX Canada support team through their portal: www.carfax.ca/contact

For our next blog post, we’ll identify what you need to pay attention to when you’re going through the Lien Check, Accident Damage and Registration sections.


About OMVIC

As the regulator of motor vehicle sales in Ontario, OMVIC’s mandate is to maintain a fair and informed marketplace by protecting the rights of consumers, enhancing industry professionalism and ensuring fair, honest and open competition for registered motor vehicle dealers. Visit omvic.ca to learn more about your car-buying rights as well as additional tips for buying a car in Ontario. For car buying tips, check out the OMVIC Academy. You can view other resources such as multilingual videos and download the OMVIC Car-buying Guide


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