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How To Decode a VIN  Prior to understanding how VIN decoding works, it is important to know what it is all about.
The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is stamped on a plate located on the top left hand side of the instrument panel, so it can be seen by looking through the windshield. The service parts identification label has been developed and placed on the vehicle to aid in identifying parts and options originally installed on the vehicle. Yet just 12 of the symbol designs were common across all models.Breakdown firm Britannia Rescue, which commissioned the report, also conducted a survey of 2,018 drivers that revealed more than half of drivers (52 per cent) can correctly identify all 16 of the most common symbols.
The company said the number of warnings on dashboards varied dramatically from one make to another and highlighted the Mercedes-Benz E Class for having 41 compared to 21 in a Nissan Micra, BMW 3 Series and Volvo S40. The Britannia Rescue poll found that a quarter of motorists have had one or more warning symbols light up while driving in the past 12 months a€“ most commonly the engine, oil or battery lights.
The most baffling light is for a faulty catalytic converter which was incorrectly identified by 95 per cent of drivers.

Next for confusion was the air conditioning light which 86 per cent got wrong, followed by a tyre pressure warning that flummoxed 71 per cent. The majority carry on driving and it takes an average 12 days before they get the problem checked but six per cent admitted they ignored a warning light for more than a month which can be costly. Drivers who take 14 days to repair their car pay A?200, more than double the A?85 spent by drivers who get cars fixed immediately.
The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. The VIN is a seventeen digit sequence of numbers and letters important for ordering parts and for servicing. This is extremely helpful when purchasing a used vehicle, or restoring a used vehicle to its original state.
The plate supplies various information for original parts ordering and body, engine and transmission identification.

The formal VIN started in 1981 since before that there were different formats used by different manufacturers.
The standardization of the numbers was done to get rid of chances of similar VIN’s appearing. The digits that are found on car VIN indicate the year the vehicle was manufactured, assembly point, country of origin, model as well as other important details that will prove helpful in its identification.

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