VIN Etching Scam. How To Detect it?
According to some statistics, a vehicle is stolen in the United States of America every 23 seconds. VIN etching is something that helps vehicle owners avoid being robbed. Numerous insurance companies and all the police departments recommend car VIN etching as an effective tool against vehicle thefts.
VIN etching involves using a stencil and a special etching paste to engrave vehicle’s VIN onto the windows and the windshield.
Thieves will not steal a car with VIN etched windows, because it seriously and negatively affects the vehicle’s value. If a thief decides to sell car parts from the vehicle, he will have to face a huge risk as the marked places indicate the car’s actual VIN. The thief will have to pay a few thousands of dollars to replace the car’s windshield and windows to be able to resell it. Thus, no thief will ever think about throwing himself into such a trouble.
The bad news, however, is that VIN etching can sometimes turn into a VIN etching scam.
Here is how it works; car dealers will charge you $150-$1000 for VIN etching your car. They will say the service is added to the vehicle’s price. Actually, this is the unlawful practice of the dealer to offer an add-on at an extraordinarily high price.
However ridiculous this sounds, the VIN etching scam is quite common. Sometimes a car purchase contract will enlist this service but people are usually too excited with their new vehicles, so they are not careful to look at what they are signing.
The only way to avoid the VIN etching scam is to refuse the dealer’s service of engraving the sticker. In reality VIN etching is a very simple thing to do; you just need to buy a window etching kit at any auto store and do it yourself. The kit usually costs $20.