Clean Title Meaning? You must have heard about Clean Title, but can’t really pinpoint what it means or what it got to do with a Car. That is why you need to read this content to the end. A title is a record of the vehicle’s history. A legal document offered by a DMV that tells you who’s owned the car, major accident reports and the vehicle’s current condition.
Clean Title Meaning – Clean Title
In Titles, your will also find the car’s VIN, make and model, manufacture year and any financing info. However, if you want to buy a used car, you need to pay close attention to title brands.
A branded title will explain to you about major damage the car has sustained in the past. Coming to the key focus of this content “Clean title”. A clean title doesn’t mean the car is in perfect condition, what then can you call it?
What Does A Clean Title Actually Mean?
A clean title is simply a default title. Thus all vehicles start out with a clean title. If a car has a clean title, it means the car has not experienced any of the circumstances that cause a title brand, like receiving flood damage or getting totalled.
Note, that a clean title vehicle does not mean the car has never been damaged. When a vehicle is seriously damaged, the insurance provider may decide the repairs cost more than the car’s worth. When this happens, the insurance company might mark the car as “totalled.”
If a vehicle is totalled, it will get a title brand. But cars can be damaged without being totalled. So, if a car has sustained damage in the past that doesn’t exceed its cost, then the car can maintain its clean title.
In case you want to purchase a used car, you need to get a reliable technician to check the car over before you make any commitments to buy.
Types of Title Brands
Like I said earlier, a car’s title will reflect what’s happened to the car in the past. If the title is branded, it means the car has sustained serious damage in the past- that you should carefully consider before purchasing it. Below are the car’s title brands:
Salvage: This simply means that the vehicle has been totalled due to damages. However, vehicles with salvage titles cannot be driven legally until they are rebuilt.
Rebuilt /Reconstructed: When a vehicle with a salvage title has been repaired and can be legally driven again. This title can also be referred to as repaired, reconditioned or reconstructed.
Flood/water damage: If a car has significant water damage, mostly from a flood occurrence. This is important because flood damage can lead to electrical problems with the car, plus other issues that are difficult to repair.
Junk: When the car is legally inoperable and can only be sold for parts and scrap. It can also be referred to as non-repairable.
Odometer rollback: If the car has an odometer that has been deemed unreliable, which means it may have been tampered with to show a lower mileage. You can also call it “True Mileage Unknown” (TMU).
Lemon: This refers to a vehicle that has been out of commission for 30 days or more or a vehicle that has had an issue repaired repeatedly without result. Lemon may also refer to vehicle issues stemming from the manufacturer.
What is Title Washing?
Title washing is illegal and a form of fraud. The purpose of the fraud is to hide title brands. Criminals who want to sell cars without disclosing title brands make use of title washing to defraud buyers.
So, if you’re buying a used car, you can protect yourself from title washing by having the car checked by a trusted technician. It is an expert the technician should be able to spot previous damage, even if it’s not listed in the title.
Possible Issues With “Clean” Title Car – Clean Title Meaning
A car with a clean title can still have thousands of mechanical issues. However, You can purchase a car with a clean title that has a broken-down powertrain.
A clean title can hide sloppy repairs. Sometimes, drivers can choose to fix collisions, fire damage, or electrical issues on their own, or by paying cash under the table to avoid an insurance claim that will affect their premiums. A vehicle with a clean title may have had the equivalent of ‘reconstructive surgery.
How to check a car that has a Clean Title
A Vehicle History Report Can Verify a Free and Clear Title. Some states’ Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) have a title check tool you can use on their website. However, you can enter the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and it’ll pull up the title records. It will display any present and past liens and whether they were released.
Moreover, if your state doesn’t have an online tool, you can visit the DMV in person. A car history report like AutoCheck can reveal the title status. Which is a good way to find out if a car has a free and clean title. However, AutoCheck gathers info from several sources to show title issues:
Salvage and junk titles.
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