We have been using Car Fax for years but are thinking of switching to Auto Check mainly because our lender uses Auto Check for frame damage. What are dealers paying for their monthly subscriptions on either?


Winners Circle Auto

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auto check doesnt try to sell cars or give advice on buying carfax tells the consumer not to buy warranties alarms keep trade in till end secure your own financing first and mislead the dealer while taking dealers cash similar databases only one message to send!

We are finance company in the BHPH arena.  We only use AutoCheck as their data has been shown be superior in determining how many vehicles were flood branded after Katrina.  With our volume, our rates are probably much better than you might be able to negotiate.  While we don't offer a consumer copy of the vehicle history, we do buy warranties on every contract funded.


Toby Reiley

President, FinCo Management




autocheck seems to be more accurate, especially with the frame damage announcements from the auctions. Auto check is cheaper and does a better job but carfax does have some nice features like the service records from some repair shops but doesn't seem worth the extra money plus I would rather use the one that the auctions use, have seen too many clean carfax while the auto check shows frame damage

We use Auto Check because they have proven to be more accurate than Car Fax.  Auto Check is also about half the price of Car Fax for an unlimited number of searches.  We have one lender that pulls Car Fax for title history, so when we are financing through them we pull both.

AutoCheck is a third of the price. For unlimited we were paying like $450.00 and CARFAX is $1,200.00. However we go with CARFAX and here is why.

Consumers are flooded with CARFAX commercials. We have tried to hand them an AutoCheck and they look at us like we just handed them a handwritten note from the original owner (commercial of theirs). After handing these to customers, we have had customers ask, "Well can I have a CARFAX?" Then we proceeded to purchase the CARFAX report and print it.

The Biggest Reason We Choose to Pay Three Times More

We had an issue with a vehicle that on AutoCheck it said 'Possible Frame Damage' but CARFAX did not have it on their report. I called AutoCheck and they looked at records to find that a dealer had represented it at the auction and made an announcement that it had 'Possible Frame Damage' a few years back. We put it on a frame machine with two seperate third party companies, had written verification that it had no frame damage what so ever and AutoCheck said they could not remove the item from their report. The only way to remove the item from the report is to take it back to the original auction (6 hours away from our dealership) get the arbitration guys to look at it and if they said it didn't have frame damage then they would remove it from the report. I proceeded to call the arbitration at the auction (Tennessee Auto Auction) and they said that we could bring it, drop it off, and they would get around to it by the end of the week (this was on Tues). Need less to say, it didn't happen cause we couldn't wait a week to try to get this off the report.

Since then, we have had several discrepancies whether typographical errors or wrong VIN number records and I contact CARFAX about them, the issue is usually fixed no more than 48 hours if not that same day.

We (CarsEtc.com) will pay 10x the amount for CARFAX compared to AutoCheck for this reason mentioned above.

The vehicle was eventually taken to the auction just to see if we could get the announcement removed and they wouldn't remove it. Arbitration found a hole that was pulled in the sheet metal (not frame) from mis-loading the vehicle and left the announcement alone. Any rep can alter a AutoCheck but CARFAX (for us) is much more dependable cause they don't get their information from a wholesaler who bought the vehicle on Tues night to flip on Wed morning.

As a Lincoln Dealership Ford pays for Auto Check and we like it.  I agree with some of the other posts in that Auto Check isn't trying to be the hero to the consumer they just provide the facts.  Also, all the local lenders use Auto Check not CarFax.


Michael Walden

Pfeiffer Lincoln

AutoCheck is reliable, accurate and much less costly.  AutoCheck reports would be a major he help in risk management tool and it can be used as a deterrence if it you get sued.  Plaintiff Attorneys could argue that dealer intended to defraud a customer by providing Carfax report and not AutoCheck, knowing that some facts from auctions are not disclosed.  Therefore, you would be much better off to disclose what you know or could know and not face it later.   Finally, why would you want to support an organization like CarFax who is advertising that dealers are dishonest and then asks the dealer to support them to advertise more about the same thing.  Anyone that scares consumers and indirectly extorts dealers, should not be rewarded, I know many dealers in AutoSoftNET dealer group that use AutoCheck and have no issues with consumers fighting them.  When anyone is asking for a xerox, they mean a copy not the brand, right?  

Is there a Auto Check icon on AutoTrader.com or Cars.com?

I haven't seen one when looking at vehicles. Besides, customers always ask for a Carfax Report.

How important is that? Answer: Very.

I would not switch. 

Carfax gives you credibility. Priceless!

unless your qualifying a unit for a certified preowned program....it has already been proven that customers do not care if it is a carfax or not. Autocheck gives you credibility as well. 6 of 1 half dozen of another...just costs less.
When I have a customer ask for the "Carfax" report I simply print and hand them an Autocheck report. We switched to Autocheck over a year ago and have not had the first customer notice or make any comment about the history report not being from "Carfax". Honestly, I don't think they have noticed the difference. They wanted to see the history and that is what they get. We no longer have people asking if we can reduce the price because the report says this vehicle is worth xx amount less, etc. It's all about branding. All the customer wants is the facts.

I had been using CARFAX for a long time and it is extremely expensive. I am now changing to Autocheck because of the price difference. When I worked for a dealer group we were able to afford both. I remember once wholesaling a car at the auction and the car had a clean Carfax but as the car was running thru the lane the title clerk at the podium told me it had to be announced frame because Autocheck stated it did. From then on I knew if I was going to wholesale cars at the auction I would need to have Autocheck.

The real problem is that the consumer does not know Autocheck. Like the saying goes "Show me the Carfax"! and that is the real situation. Carfax has a hugh marketing campaign and they really get into the customer's mind. So keep in mind if you retail which we most of us do and you are not a new car dealer to have the backing of the shingle, you will need to be very clean and transparent with the customer. Carfax is the one the customer knows but for dealers Autocheck is the way to go.

Carfax is driven into every customers head. Its hard to convince a customer that the AutoCheck is as good,

We use Carfax when a customer requests one. We use Autocheck to evaluate trade ins and auction buys.


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