How Do I Know if My Car Has Been Recalled?

In the world of automobiles, recalls are a big deal. After all, we depend on our vehicles to safely transport our dear ones and us every day. So when an automobile’s manufacturer determines that a specific part of the vehicle or its equipment poses a safety threat to drivers and issues a recall, it’s essential to take the necessary action. 

Your automobile’s manufacturer should notify you if your automobile is affected by a recall, so as long as your registration is up-to-date, you’ll get something in the mail reporting you about the recall. 

But just in case you think you may have missed it, you can also check online by accessing your vehicle identification number, VIN, into a VIN lookup tool. Toyota VIN decoder is today’s best overall VIN decoder option to opt for. 

What is Recall?

A recall happens when a vehicle’s manufacturer or the NHTSA concludes that a part of that vehicle isn’t up to safety norms and poses a safety risk. 

Recalls can start as complaints — if a number of drivers report having the same issue with the same make and model of the automobile, the NHTSA will open an inquiry, which can lead to the agency telling an automobile’s manufacturer to issue a recall. But more often, the manufacturer will determine on their own to issue a recall. 

Either way, you’ll get a letter in the mail within 60 days of a recall if your vehicle is affected, assuming your vehicle registration is up to date, with your current address. You can also check online to see if your automobile has been affected by a recent recall. 

Automobile recalls happen far more frequently than you may realise, and the truth is, your motor vehicle may be part of one at any moment. Whether you bought an automobile new or used, retained it for months or years, open recalls happen all the time– and you are entitled to a repair for your car.

Automakers are needed by law to consign out recall alerts to owners, including via mail, email, and occasionally over the phone, but these notices can be pretty easy to miss. 

Are Recalls Free?

However, the recall letter you get in the mail will probably direct you to a regional dealership where you can take your automobile for a repair or replacement if there’s an open recall on your vehicle. The dealership should fix the recall issue free of charge — the manufacturer will foot the bill. 

Nevertheless, you should reach the manufacturer to let them know, or file a complaint with the NHTSA; if you try to take your automobile to a dealership to deal with the recall issue, and they deny to help you. Remember, if there’s a recall on your automobile, it’s the manufacturer’s responsibility to deal with the issue and make sure your automobile is safe to drive again. 

Is It Illegal to Deal an Automobile with a Recall? 

As long as an automobile is named as “ used,” it’s legal to sell it with an open recall. The dealer should reveal the open recall, and if you choose to buy that used motor vehicle, it would be up to you to go through the steps of having it fixed. 

However, a dealership can’t legally sell you a new automobile with an open recall — it has to be fixed before a new automobile can with a recall can be sold. 

 Nevertheless, do a quick check on the VIN to make sure there aren’t any unrepaired recalls on that automobile. If you’re buying a used automobile. But remember that any recalls that were issued and have been fixed may not show up in a search. 

How to Find Out If Your Car Has Been Recalled?

Get VIN Number

A vehicle identification number (VIN) is the identification code comprised of numbers and characters that an automobile producer allocates to a respective vehicle. VIN number can uncover numerous things about motor vehicles, including their airbag type, the nation of commencement, motor size, model year, vehicle type, trim level, and plant name. 

Your unique 17- character vehicle identification number, or VIN, can be found in a number of places on your vehicle. Suppose it is like your vehicle’s serial number. 

By law, every vehicle built since 1981 has its VIN put out behind the lower driver’s side corner of the windshield. You can also find your VIN on your vehicle registration or insurance card or on a placard on the driver’s door jamb. 

Use VIN Decoder

There are a variety of VIN decoders available online and claims to provide you with details about your vehicle. But you can’t rely on any such decoder. Toyota VIN decoder is one of the best VIN decoders available online. It provides you with the most accurate and reliable data associated with your vehicle. 

You need to visit the Toyota VIN decoder website after getting the VIN number of the car. Once you reach the homepage of the VIN decoder, you see the search bar of the lookup tool. 

Enter the VIN number in the search bar and press the Search button. The tool will present the full-fledged report displaying all the necessary details about the vehicle. You will be able to check if the vehicle has ever been recalled and, if recalled, how many times. 

Other than the recalls report, you will get the following information in the VIP lookup report:

  • Recall and safety history checks
  • The previous country of registration and use.
  • Previous photos of the Toyota vehicle.
  • Damage report.
  • Maintenance records
  • The accuracy of mileage.
  • Theft record.
  • Other useful information

Can You Get a Recalled Car Insured?

However, it’ll have no effect on your insurance premium, If your motor vehicle has been recalled and you have followed all the steps obligatory to get it fixed and back in working order. And you don’t need to involve your insurance in the repair because the manufacturer will pay for the recall issue to be fixed. You may still need to let your insurance provider know that you’ve dealt with the issue, though. 

Nevertheless, then you might see your rates go up if you ignore the recall and get into an accident because of the recalled part or problem. Your premiums are calculated in part based on how safe and responsible a driver you are, and an unfixed recall that leads to an accident could have a negative impact on your automobile insurance rates. 

Ignoring a recall can also put you and your passengers in hazard, so make sure to take your automobile in for a fix as soon as you can after a recall is published. 


You can easily detect if your car has been recalled or not. You can search the VIN number of your car in the Toyota VIN decoder and get the records of the safety and maintenance recalls of your vehicle. You will even get other important information that makes you understand your vehicle better.