AutoCheck vs Carfax…the Clash of the Titans! Which vehicle history report provider is the best? Which one should you choose and why? Let’s take a closer look at both of them and see who comes out victorious…
Before we begin, here’s a little information about each company so you are more familiar with them:
Carfax was founded in 1984, and is a subsidiary of IHS Markit, a publicly traded critical information analytics and solutions company. They pull their vehicle information from over 100,000 sources and have a database of over 17 billion records of cars starting with 1981, when the 17-character VIN was first established.
Autocheck was founded in 1996, and is a subsidiary of Experian, a major credit reporting agency. They also pull their vehicle info from a variety of sources and have billions of records in their system. They also offer various other features that Carfax does not, including the patented AutoCheck Score that predicts the car’s reliability.
Autocheck vs Carfax – Comparison By Category
Comprehensiveness of Data
When it comes to the information provided, both companies have billions of records with tons of information, so we would have to say it’s a tie in this regard. Carfax has access to some information that AutoCheck doesn’t, and vice versa. So for any given car, one company might have more available data than the other, but in general both provide very complete information, much more so than any other provider.
Although you hear a lot about free vehicle history reports, there’s no such thing and all companies will charge for their full reports.
Carfax currently offers three options: One report for $39.99, 3 reports for $59.99 and 6 reports for $99.99
AutoCheck also offers three options: One report for $24.99, 25 reports for $49.99 and 300 reports for $99.99.
So when it comes to AutoCheck vs Carfax in the price department, AutoCheck wins hands down. You save $15 on a single report, and you have options for 25 and 300 reports. Carfax tops out at only 6 reports for the same price as 300 from AutoCheck. Note that both companies used to order an unlimited report option, but that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore.
We’ve combed through dozens of different sites and have received feedback from thousands of customers, and as far as customer satisfaction, more people seem to be pleased with AutoCheck than with Carfax. Now, Carfax also has many more customers and has been around much longer, but still, as a whole, there seem to be a lot more complaints about Carfax than about AutoCheck.
One potential issue is the price, as people expect more when they pay more. So those who are paying a premium for Carfax reports may be more likely to complain when they don’t get what they thought they were getting.
Another thing that came up often was the fact that their previous unlimited report option was not really unlimited, and there were many restrictions and added costs beyond a certain number of reports. That might be why they no longer offer the unlimited package.
So when it comes to AutoCheck vs Carfax in the satisfaction department, we have to give the edge to AutoCheck.
AutoCheck vs Carfax – Where Each One Excels
AutoCheck comes out ahead in the following areas…
Accident History: One of the most important things that people want to know when shopping for a used car is if it was ever in an accident. Both CarFax and AutoCheck provide accident history.
Of course, both can miss unreported minor accidents or those not claimed on insurance. But AutoCheck edges out, because it has exclusive connections with two of the largest auction services. Their information is comprehensive, and it does cover frame damage, the critical issue.
AutoCheck Score: Only AutoCheck offers a unique scoring system that compares the vehicle you are looking at with similar vehicles on the road to help you determine whether or not it is worth buying. So if you are considering a 2018 Camry with a score of 82, but others in its class score in the range of 90-95, you know you should probably look elsewhere. Carfax does not give you a similar frame of reference to go off of.
Industry Partnerships: When it comes to AutoCheck vs Carfax as far as the online industry is concerned, more companies have switched over from Carfax to AutoCheck than vice versa. AutoCheck seems to offer more favorable terms and are easier to partner with.
Out of the top 10 automotive resource sites online, 5 of them are partnered with AutoCheck: AutoTrader, Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, CarGurus and Carmax. Only 2 partner up with Carfax.
Buyback Protection: A car’s “buyback price” means the sale value of the used car at the time of sale, according to the National Automobile Dealer Association (NADAguides.com) valuation. AutoCheck’s buyback program is 110% of the NADAguides.com published retail price and up to $500 in accessories added after purchase.
Carfax’s buyback value is the “maximum of the purchase price of the vehicle excluding warranties, insurance and other additional purchases” with nothing for aftermarket accessories. Buyback plans may require complex processes and time from both providers. But overall, AutoCheck provides broader scope to your return on the car’s value.
Carfax comes out ahead in the following categories…
Knowing the maintenance history of a potential pre-owned vehicle is helpful. You can see if the car was given the recommended maintenance at standard mileage points (oil changes, repairs,tune-ups, diagnostics, etc.).
If the previous owner did his or her own repairs, neither company will have information. However, if they brought the car to a facility that shares this information, Carfax reports will often show this history as well the dates of service. AutoCheck does not offer this information.
Mileage and Previous Owners
Although the reports typically have equal amounts of information, when it comes to AutoCheck vs Carfax, the latter company has the edge when it comes to odometer readings and number of vehicle owners. This is due to Carfax’s more extensive maintenance history records.
AutoCheck vs Carfax – Which One Should You Choose?
Both services are very reliable and helpful when buying a used car. Carxax is a well-known brand, with a longer history and maintenance data that provides better owner information.
AutoCheck offers the better pricing, both for single and multiple reports. It found a creative way to provide better accident history data, and seems to have a better reputation in the industry. You also get the AutoCheck Score which can be very helpful.
So although their are proponents on both sides, when it comes to Autocheck vs Carfax, we believe that AutoCheck is a better choice for you, with Carfax a close second.
Ready to check a car with our top pick? Just follow the link for an AutoCheck Vehicle History Report or just enter your VIN on this page.