Every driver, when buying a vehicle on the secondary market, asks the question of how to find out if the vehicle's mileage is twisted. It is in the used car market that this problem is most common.
Why change the odometer reading?
Most often, the twisting of mileage is associated with the desire of unscrupulous sellers to overestimate the real cost of a car. The buyer is exposed to significant risk, as the likelihood of purchasing a vehicle with severe wear on many (if not most) internal parts increases.
In some countries, mileage in commercial vehicles is reduced due to various government taxes, the payment of which depends on the odometer reading over a certain period of time.
There are even situations when the mileage is not reduced, but increased. The goal is to convince the buyer that the expensive scheduled maintenance that the cars undergo when they reach 90-105 thousand km has already been carried out. The client buys a car with confidence, and after a short period of use, various parts start to fail regularly.
Signs of change in readings on the mechanical odometer
In any car, you can reduce or increase the mileage. On machines equipped with a mechanical odometer, this is done in two ways:
- The speedometer cable is disconnected from the gearbox and rotated with a power tool (screwdriver, drill) in the desired direction.
- Manual method - the dashboard is disassembled and the necessary numbers are set.
If it is suspected that the mileage has been manually rolled, the odometer should be carefully inspected. The numbers on it when the car is moving should switch smoothly, without jumps up or down. Also, if you look closely at the dial, you will notice a dark space separating the values. If it is found that it has a white or silver tint, then it has not done without interfering with the odometer reading.
With the first method of changing the odometer mileage, it is almost impossible to determine the intervention. Therefore, it is necessary to focus on the correspondence of the readings to the external state of various parts of the vehicle.
How to detect tampering with the electronic odometer readings?
Electronic odometers store mileage data in memory. Therefore, a computer with special software is used to correct its value. Sometimes you even have to change the microcircuits (it is in them that this information is located) in the electronic boards of the dashboards.
The best way to check if the odometer reading is correct is to have it diagnosed at an authorized dealership. But you can try and independently determine if the car's mileage is twisted.
When re-soldering the microcircuits, it is necessary to remove the dashboard, therefore, you should check for damage or scratches that may form during unprofessional dismantling. The electronic boards themselves are coated with a layer of varnish during manufacture, and the replacement of microcircuits will be clearly visible.
In addition, the mileage values are recorded by the on-board computer, when they are corrected, traces of interference will remain, which can be easily determined by an electronics specialist.
General signs of twisted mileage
There are several options to find out about the change in odometer readings:
- according to the state of interior parts;
- carefully study the vehicle registration certificate and service book;
- Measure the tire tread height;
- to check the operability and condition of important elements of the vehicle.
Close attention is paid to the abrasion of the seats, steering wheel, foot mats (especially on the driver's side), and rubber pedal pads. The characteristic wear of these elements indicates a high mileage. Rubbed plastic and other coatings on the right side of the accelerator pedal are a clear indicator of intensive use.
You can find out about the twisting of the mileage by comparing the words of the seller about the planned maintenance of the machine with the corresponding marks in the service book. Any discrepancy indicates a falsification of the terms of maintenance in the document, and therefore a change in the odometer readings. You should contact the representatives of the service in which the car was serviced, and by the VIN-code, find out the value of the mileage at the last visit.
You need to find out from the seller when the tires were changed. If the rubber was purchased together with a car, then the tread height with an odometer reading within 30 thousand km should not be less than the maximum permissible (for cars - 1.60 mm). You can measure it both in a car service and on your own using a coin.
Another sign of tampering with the odometer is excessively worn brake discs, but aggressive driving can also lead to this, which is also not very useful for the car. With a high mileage (over 100 thousand km), the windshield will be dotted with small chips and marks from the wipers, and the presence of glare on it will indicate that it has been polished.
The condition of the body may not always indicate a high mileage, since with careful handling the car will travel more than 200 thousand km, and its appearance will practically not change. Therefore, it is recommended to contact a car service, where specialists will help determine whether the odometer readings are true or not, and check the state of the vehicle's vital systems..