Author Topic: A warning on CARFAX...  (Read 1592 times)

Offline jcompton

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A warning on CARFAX...
« on: July 21, 2004, 12:50:16 AM »
So I was recently shopping for a used car and figured, okay, lots of ads and buying guides and even some reputable organizations highly recommend a CARFAX check. And even though I knew I was buying a beater (bought it as a spare to teach myself stick shift on), I figure... sure, may as well use it to separate wheat from chaff.

CARFAX is arranged with a silly (from the customer's perspective) sales model. You can pay $15 for ONE VIN report, or $25 for a month of unlimited VIN reports.

Well, duh.

So I got the month, and it didn't take me long to find a car and buy it. But now I've got all this CARFAX subscription I'm not using. So I started running some other cars--my own, friends, etc. Because it's fun.

And found that... really, you can't put a heck of a lot of stock in CARFAX's clean bills of health.

One car I ran came back with "no accidents reported" when in fact it was in two police-reported fender benders and another insurance incident.

Another car that I ran that had suffered thousands of dollars in flood damage came back with--ta da!--no flood damage reported!

So the data, or more specifically LACK of data, you get from CARFAX can't be taken all that seriously.

Sadly, it's still worth the $25, just to weed out any serious heaps from your search. But if it comes back clean... your work has really only just started.
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Offline MERLANCE

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2004, 01:25:04 AM »
Hmm, you seem to have been suckered in somewhat.


You only needed to pay $15. If you had just done one car, you would have saved 10 dollars.

For ten dollars more, it seemed you engaged in a merry old adventure looking up nonessential things.

Of course, if you intended to look at multiple cars, regardless of what you were looking up, then the increase in price would have been worth it.

It just seems that you wasted 10 dollars to me.

Kind of like buying a can of corn for 99 cents, with a second can for half price. If you only wanted that one can of corn, you just wasted 50 cents if you got the second one.

Offline neriana

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2004, 02:39:56 AM »
Hmm, you seem to have been suckered in somewhat.

You only needed to pay $15. If you had just done one car, you would have saved 10 dollars.

Yeah, if you were only ever going to look at ONE car, with no comparison shopping. Not a very good way to buy anything. And not what he actually did.
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Offline Ghreyfain

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2004, 03:56:58 AM »
Sounds like he had fun testing out other people's cars, too, yeah.  What kind of fun costs ten dollars, these days?

Edit: I just got a pop-up ad from somewhere that says I can get viagra for $1.10.  Guess we know how much fun one can get for ten dollars, now.
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Offline jcompton

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2004, 08:54:47 AM »

Of course, if you intended to look at multiple cars, regardless of what you were looking up, then the increase in price would have been worth it.

I did.
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Offline Cybersquirt

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2004, 08:55:42 AM »
$10 could also buy "dinner" for 2 at McDonalds...  ::)
Stupid is as stupid does.

Offline jester

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2004, 01:52:31 PM »
$10 could also buy "dinner" for 2 at McDonalds...  ::)
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« Last Edit: July 22, 2004, 04:10:27 AM by jester »
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Offline Cybersquirt

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2004, 07:00:28 PM »
Uh.. no, that would make it $12  ;D

$10 would buy a seat in a movie theatre, with small beverage OR popcorn.
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Offline Mongoose87

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Re: A warning on CARFAX...
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2004, 12:10:25 AM »
$10 could also buy "dinner" for 2 at McDonalds...  ::)
Make that heart attack for two