If you purchase a car that has had its odometer rolled back, you may end up paying more for a vehicle than it is actually worth. As well, you will not know when an actual scheduled safety check is due which could make driving the car a safety hazard.
There are a number of reasons why sellers roll back odometers. They may want to keep the vehicle to remain under factory warranty to avoid paying for repairs. There are others who have leased cars who will roll the odometer back so they do not have to pay the lease return mileage fee. For those who have the “know how” and tools, it is quite easy to roll back an odometer. With newer cars, all that one has to do is download a roll back program from the internet, install it on a laptop, and then perform the digital odometer rollback. As well, with the right tools, it is quite easy to physically roll back the miles.
Dealers and private sellers can commit odometer fraud against the manufacturer, buyer, and lender, with the dealer or seller keeping the illegal profits. Common types of odometer fraud include: replacing an odometer without reporting the replacement, not disclosing the actual mileage at the time of the sale, reporting inaccurate miles on a vehicle’s odometer, disconnecting an odometer, not getting a new odometer if it is broken, rolling back an odometer to make it appear that a vehicle has lower mileage, and a seller misquoting the odometer mileage on the documentation that helps the vehicle meet the criteria for manufacturer or lender financing programs.
To see if an odometer has been rolled back, you can check the mechanical analog odometer’s numbers. Check the numbers to see if they are straight with consistently spaced gaps between the numbers. Also, look for pencil marks on the numbers. Check for scratches on the inside and edges of instrument cover. Also, gently strike the dash to find out if the numbers move.
Inspect the dash for any missing screws which may indicate that the dash may have been opened. As well, take the vehicle for a test drive to make sure that the numbers on the odometer move correctly and are not clicking when they turn. You can also check the electronic odometer display. It should only display the number, If it displays a letter or asterisk symbol (*), this usually indicates tampering. You should also get the dealership to show you the odometer statement from when the dealership acquired the vehicle as well as an inspection certificate that would include a date and the mileage of the vehicle at the time it was inspected.
In every state, Odometer Fraud is illegal, and if convicted one can face fines up to imprisonment. If you think you are a victim of Odometer Fraud, you should consult with an attorney that specializes in Odometer Fraud. An Odometer Fraud Attorney will help you get justice and compensation.