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National Motor Vehicle Title Information System

September 26, 2011 Dealerships & Salvage No Comments

Has That Vehicle Been Damaged?

 

 

United States Department of Justice

NMVTIS

 

National Motor Vehicle Title Information System is the national federal database that shows if the vehicle has been a total loss.

Came out of 1992 Anti Theft Act.  This took 17 years to come to fruition including Cash For Clunkers.  It is a requirement for salvage yards and automotive recycling companies to report VIN numbers when the vehicle comes in and if the vehicle is crushed that VIN is also submitted. Flood damaged vehicle VIN’s are to be entered.  Auto Auction companies enter the VIN information.

NMVTIS

Reports cost $2.95 to $4.95 and this report is independent of CarFax.

NMVTIS titling is carried forward. Older vehicle historical records may not be in the system.

Alliance Inspection Management (AIM) do inspections for consumers and for dealers. They will run database checks, engine and transmission oil sample analysis, and provide an assessment for the vehicle’s condition.

Automotive Cloning

Bad guys could take an automobile and change or replate the VIN to a good car or a salvage vehicle that they have purchased the salvage VIN. You can expect to find 20 VIN numbers on a modern car.

Creative Crime

In one criminal example the same VIN was used to export six (6) vehicles that had been cloned with the same VIN.

Inspection

Consumer inspection can cost $129 to $400 for a full inspection with fluid samples and vehicle history reports, as reported by Alliance Inspection Management.

Autoline Detroit

Below is the link to Autoline Detroit from September 25, 2011.  The show focuses on flood and damage vehicle issues with representatives from Alliance Inspection Management and the Automotive Recyclers Associaiton meeting with host John McElroy.

httpv://www.autoline.tv/journal/?p=18137

Flood Damaged Vehicles

November 18, 2009 Dealerships & Salvage 1 Comment

Flood Damaged Cars Are In The News

Submersion IllustrationThere have been a lot of floods lately. 

In reality there are always annual floods and these floods result in a lot of vehicles that have been damaged by partial or full immersion.

Flood Titles and Salvage Titles

Depending on the State, a post flood vehicle may end up with a Salvage Title or a Flood Title.  Each State has their own laws and regulations associated with flood damaged vehicles and quantification of associated damage.

The Simple Answer

If you are considering purchase of a flood damage vehicle then research your State’s laws and regulations associated with water damage.  You must know precisely what the title information means.

Not So Simple Answer

Water Damaged Corvette on Craigslist

Water Damaged Corvette on Craigslist

If the car you are considering has been water damaged then Please Exercise Extreme Care before you decide to buy the car.  Be sure and pull a CARFAX report.  Carfax is not the single answer but it may provide a history that will help you to get a better understanding of what happened to the vehicle.

Where Are The Problems

Flood damage vehicle restoration requires attention to detail.  Here is a link to a firm and their report concerning service of a Ford Focus in the UK that serviced the car.  This is very detailed and addresses their concerns and how they approached the problem.

Here are some key elements to consider:

  • total submersion to just the floor pan
  • fresh water or salt water
  • contaminates in water
  • was the car “dried out”
  • were the connectors corrosion protected

 The Real Problem

Water Damaged Corvette on Craigslist

Water Damaged Corvette on Craigslist

Electronics and connectors are the real problem.  Submersion of the chassis, engine, transmission, and drive train have historic repair procedures that absolutely work.

Electrical and electronic components, connectors, and wires are the real probmem.  Corrosion is defined as deterioration in metals by oxidation or chemical action.  Corrosion occurs because water gets into the wiring.  In a flood damaged car water will get into contact with the components and the wires.

If it is possible to disassemble the connectors, wires, and components and dry them out and then use a corrosion proofing product such as CorrosionX then corrosion will be reduced and possibly eliminated.

Water can migrate inside the wiring harness of a car.  If water gets into the wiring harness then the wiring harness may have to be replaced.  This is very expensive because some vehicle body wiring harnesses can approach $1,ooo and engine wiring harnesses in the range of $500.  If a vehicle requires harness replacement do not be surprised if you find that supplemental harnesses are required to connect to other parts and areas of the car.

Reality Check and Harsh Words

MSN Article has a very good assessment about flood damaged cars.  It is definitely worth review.

Personal Reality Check

Any vehicle that you are considering purchase should be considered suspect!  Flood damaged cars are not always identified as being flood and water damaged.  A very thorough inspection is essential.  A very thorough inspection by a vehicle technical inspection service or individual is essential.

Lots and Lots of Cars at Copart

1200+ Flood Vehicles (Medium)Automotive Tribune has previously discussed Copart and the fact that they have a very significant presence in the automotive industry.  On a recent visit to Copart I picked up the flier that indicated 1200+ flood damaged vehicles were available in Atlanta.  Flood damaged cars included a Ford GT, 2008 Corvette, a new Audi, and a 2007 550S Mercedes just to name a few.

Flood Damaged Motor Coaches

I have inspected flood damaged motor coaches.  These can be particularlly difficult, if not impossible, to fix. 

Craigslist Flood Damaged Corvette

CORVETTE 1998 TRIPLE BLACK CONVERTABLE – $12000  I bought this car for my wife in 2000, we are the 2nd owners, it was a prior GM Lease, in 2001 my wife drove it in a flooded intersection and sucked water in the air intake, the insurance company replaced the motor and transmission, it has only had 10k miles since then, call me for additional details.  This triple black Corvette showed 9,661 miles on the odometer.

Bottom Line

Flood damaged cars are very suspect.  These cars are not recommended for the consumer that expects dependability of a normal vehicle.  Any new or used vehicle purchase needs to be made carefully!  Owning a flood damaged car can cost you thousands of dollars to repair and it is unlikely that the car can or will every be fully repaired if the car was totally submerged!

Auto Ramblings

National Automobile Dealers Association

Car Allowance Rebate SystemNADA asked the Federal Government on August 19, 2009 to suspend the CARS Cash for Clunkers Program because, by their research, the $3B has been exhausted.

It is clear that the CARS program has lifted vehicle production quotas, especially for fuel efficient vehicles.  Automotive Tribune is of the opinion that winding the CARS program down will result in a long term Federal program that will encourage purchase of high mileage vehicles.

‘Old Chrysler’ Creditors Sue Daimler Over Assets

chryslerDaimler still owns 19.9% of Chrysler.  However, since the failed “Merger of Equals” things have again started to heat up.  It is clear that a great deal of discontent is evident because of the Chrysler meltdown.  Watching this litigation will definitely produce another round of very nasty automotive finger pointing.  There will be plenty of media coverage … stay tuned.

A Visit To The Closed Bill Heard Chevrolet Orlando

A Visit To Bill Heard In Orlando

hill-heard-i-4-signimg_0636-mediumSeveral days ago I had the opportunity to stop at the Bill Heard Chevrolet dealership in Orlando and take some photos for the Tribune.  Taking a look around the Bill Heard property in some ways is like visiting a grave sight after everyone has left and before the casket is lowered into the ground.  In this massive location I found everything to be totally quiet.  Looking around and seeing the totally quiet facility easily produced mental images of the greatness that had occurred in this Cathedral to Mr. Big Deal.

One Big Facility

bill-heard-orlando-google-earth_bBig signs, big buildings, big showrooms, big parts area, big service area, an administrative complex and other structures surrounded by acres of parking for new and used vehicles.  This is one absolutely huge place.

Life After People

Parts and Service

The facility looks like the doors were shut and the gates chained and nothing else has happened in the months after collapse of the Bill Heard empire.  Things take on the appearance of a sci-fi film about life after people.  Birds chirp and the wind blows.  There are no cars and no people.

Life With People

Used car salesNew car delivery area "Delivery Parking Only" signsLooking at the various structures on the property it became clear that in better times this was a massive economic and social engine.  Huge numbers of customers and employees were here every day.  Parts, service, sales, vendors, tool trucks, car shows, kids, adults, seniors, business leaders, community leaders, and the list could continue on-and-on; this place was a city of commerce and historical significance.  Bill Heard Chevrolet in Orlando is that big and it was that significant.

Photos in the article provide a general feel for the facility.  Additional photos are posted in the Gallery.

Auto Dealer Agony

Auto Dealer Agony

daytona-lm_2It is almost impossible to imagine that auto dealerships would be in such chaos today.  Dealerships, particularly for the domestic brands, are closing by the hundreds and thousands. 

Auto dealerships have been economic engines of success.  Yes there have been some failures as manufacturers and products have disappeared over the past 100 years.  For decades owning a dealership has been a “license to print money” in the opinion of your Editor who happened to have a dealership for 10 years.

Historically, auto dealers have been great community citizens.  Dealers have sponsored little league and many sporting events along with a multitude of civic and community activity.  Event sponsorship was because they had money to do it an they were part of the local “fabric of society” … Continue Reading

Salvage Auction = 1 Million+ Vehicles Per Year

Advertised Copart Cars May Be A Golden Bargain

Advertised Copart Cars May Be A Golden Bargain

If you qualify as a dealer, dismantler, rebuilder, wholesaler, automotive related business, general business, exporter, you already know about this and as a private individual in Alaska, Arizona, Minnesota, North Carolina, and Oregon then you might be able to get through the front door.  With the proper credentials you are now a Dealer and in certain circles the Dealer License can be a License to Print Money!

There is a very stong probability that you know about these places but you have not been there to walk through the property or participate in an auction.  This is an important Tribune topic which represents a massive multi-billion dollar business that operates off your radar. … Continue Reading

Random Photos From Automotive Tribune Site

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Spin Ball and Click On Key Word for Article

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Richard Kubis Explains Solar Thermal Hybrid Automobile