Car Dealer Fraud: Odometer Tampering

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Odometer tampering becomes more common illegal practice. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, consumers lose billions of dollars just in the United States alone when it comes to car dealer fraud known as odometer rollback. Over the years, there have many laws and Federal regulations put into place to help control these scams. Even with these enforcement strategies, people are still falling victim to car dealer fraud including odometer rollback. It is important for customers to fully understand how to detect odometer fraud.

What you should know right off the bat is that detecting odometer rollback in a digital odometer is more difficult than detecting dealer fraud in a mechanical one. This is mainly because a digital odometer has no visible moving parts, a mechanical odometer does. What makes this very unfortunate is the fact that finding tools that can alter an odometer is as simple as browsing the Internet. The tools needed to do such a task can be purchased online, despite “disclaimers” from the retailer.

Detecting odometer tampering

This can be very difficult, but if you follow these tips you’ll be able to protect yourself:

  • Compare the mileage on the physical odometer with the mileage on all of the maintenance and inspection records.
  • Use a website such as CARFAX to help you determine if there has been a potential odometer tampering on the vehicle.
  • If the car has a mechanical odometer, check to see if the number physically line up correctly.
  • Look at the tires. If the odometer says 20,000 miles or less, then the car should still have the original tires.

If the odometer on the vehicle you have purchased was altered contact The Margarian Law Firm (818) 553-1000. We offers FREE consultations to vehicle owners in California. Don’t hesitate, call today and learn about your legal rights.