Free Car Check

Enter a registration below to check a car's history for free. Upgrade to a full car history check to get information including whether it’s been stolen, written off, or has outstanding finance, with prices starting from £3.99/check.

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<p>Powered by MotorCheck</p>

What does a car check include?

Our car check is offered in partnership with MotorCheck and includes detailed vehicle history information for any car in the UK, giving you confidence when you buy your next car. We check thousands of data sources to get the most up to date information.

  • Stolen. According to the Office for National Statistics, 130,389 cars were stolen in the UK in the last year. If you want to find out if a car you’re interested in has been stolen, all you need is the registration.

  • Write-offs. An average of 384,000* cars are written off or sustain serious damage as a result of an accident every year. To make sure the car you’re buying isn’t one of them, you can find out more about insurance write-off categories.

  • Scrapped. You can check if the car you’re looking to buy has been recorded by the DVLA as being scrapped.

  • Mileage. According to the AA 1 in 11 vehicles in the UK has mileage discrepancies.

  • Outstanding finance. An owner should clear any outstanding finance on a vehicle before selling it: if they don’t, the bank could repossess the vehicle in lieu of any money owed.

  • VIN number. When you enter the full VIN or chassis number, the car check will be able to confirm it matches the V5C logbook.

  • Imported. An imported car is more expensive to insure and replacement parts could be hard to find. As the history of an imported car can be difficult to find before its UK registration, it’s worth getting a proper imported car check.

Why should I buy a car check?

Buying a car can be a big investment, so you want to make sure that your money is spent on a vehicle that is safe, exactly how it’s described at the point of sale and worth what you pay for it.

For example, if you buy a car that has been stolen, the police can seize it and you’ll be left with nothing. Alternatively, a seller could unload a car on you that they’re still paying a finance company for: again, the finance company can repossess it and you’re left without the money you paid for it. 

Even if the car is really yours, it might have been mis sold, because the car has been ‘clocked’ (the mileage is fraudulently lowered), written off after a crash and not fixed properly, or has a VIN that isn’t consistent with the vehicle logbook (V5C). Any of these could mean the car is unsafe, which could have serious consequences. 

Another aspect that is increasingly important as the number of clean air zones (CAZ), such as the London ULEZ, proliferate is a vehicle’s emissions. A vehicle check will tell you the emission standard, usually referred as Euro with a number after it (Euro 6 is the current standard, used by the newest cars), so you know if the car is compliant with the rules of the CAZ.

A vehicle history check can establish if the car you want to buy is the car it’s supposed to be. The check will tell you everything you need to know about the car’s history since it was sold to its first owner, including whether it’s been imported, or used as a taxi.

The check will gather information from a range of official sources including DVLA, police databases, and insurance and finance companies, enabling you to make an informed decision and enjoy peace of mind when you buy your new car.

Can I check a car for free?

You can check certain details about a car for free, such as the colour, make, model, engine and MOT history. The MOT history includes details such as the last recorded mileage and any recalls that the car may be subject to, as well as any details of MOT failures. This free information can still be helpful, as it can indicate how well a car has been looked after or whether there’s a clear mileage discrepancy.   

However, you will be required to pay a small fee for a more detailed vehicle check.

A full car check includes:

  • Vehicle identity check
  • Mileage check
  • Plate changes
  • Road tax
  • Recalls
  • Finance checks 
  • Keeper changes
  • Engine replacement
  • Taxi checks
  • MOT check
  • Write-off and scrappage checks
  • Stolen vehicle check
  • Colour changes

The checks also include vehicle running costs, Euro-NCAP safety ratings and technical data, as well as an indication of the vehicle’s value.

Why check a car with us?

In partnership with MotorCheck, Carwow can provide up-to-date information about any car that you’re planning on buying. Our outstanding customer service will help you navigate your car check report and highlight any areas that have a warning flag.

In fact, we’re so confident about the quality of our data that we offer a £30,000 guarantee on every report.

Car check FAQs

You can do some checks yourself, such as the car’s history from the DVLA or its MOT history. This is the bare minimum, though. If you want a comprehensive check for complete peace of mind, your best bet is to pay for one.

A free online car check gives you basic information about a car, including its make, model, year of manufacturer, engine size, fuel type, transmission and emissions status. But as with most things in life, you get what you pay for. As you’re planning to spend a lot of your hard-earned money on your new car, it’s worth investing a few quid in a thorough check which will give you more in-depth information including whether it's has been stolen, written-off or has outstanding finance.

If you don’t conduct a full check on a car you’re buying, you could end up losing the car (if it’s stolen or still on a finance contract), losing all the money you’ve spent on it, or buying a vehicle that is unsafe because it’s previously been involved in a crash and hasn’t been fixed properly. A proper check will uncover any of these issues before you part with any money. 

You can buy a single report for £8.50. If you’re checking more than one car, we also offer bundles (three checks for £14.99 or five checks for £19.99).

If you want to know exactly who has owned the car, and what it has been used for, our paid report will tell you the number of previous owners and the dates of any change of ownership.

If you’re looking at a few different vehicle options, we offer multi-car checks that can save you up to £22 off a batch of five checks. 

We store over 500M mileage records, giving you the most up-to-date mileage for any car you’re interested in buying. You can also check the mileage for free, using our MOT History checker, which reports the mileage recorded at a car’s MOT inspection.

When viewing a car, you’re obviously going to inspect it for any signs of damage, but sometimes serious issues can be disguised. To ensure that the car is safe, a paid car check report offers more detail about any damage a car might have had, including details and dates of any damage. You can also contact our customer service team for a more in-depth accident history.

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