Odometers

Frequently asked questions about odometer fraud:

Question: What is odometer fraud?

Answer: Odometer fraud is when an odometer is rolled back or disconnected. Fraud also occurs when incorrect information is given about the accuracy of the odometer reading.

Q: How costly is odometer fraud to you?

A: Since the value of your car goes down as the miles driven goes up, you could pay thousands of dollars more than the actual value of the car.

Q: What happens when an odometer breaks?

A: When an odometer breaks and is repaired or replaced, the mileage must be set back at zero. A sticker indicating the true mileage before service and the date of service must be attached to the vehicle's left door frame. When the vehicle is sold, a disclosure statement must indicate the odometer error.

Q: How can you tell whether an odometer has been altered?

A: Look for evidence of tampering (marks on the odometer, misaligned numbers), and check the mileage entered on oil stickers, safety inspections and tire warranty cards.

Q: What can you do if you are victimized?

A: You can sue for civil damages, but you must be able to prove the odometer mileage was misrepresented, who was responsible, and that there was intent to defraud. Also, report the fraud to state authorities or call the national Auto Safety Hotline at 1-800-424-9393.

< Back