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How to Get a Window Sticker from a VIN

How to a Get Window Sticker from a VIN

Every automobile in the United States is required to display a window sticker, and among other things, it shows the vehicle’s VIN. Many people barely glance at the window sticker when buying a new car. If for some reason, you don’t have one for your car or you need to replace it, you can read on to find out how to get a window sticker from the VIN.

What is a Window Sticker?

What is a Window Sticker?

Window stickers for cars are also called Monroney stickers. This sticker has specific details on it about the vehicle, including the VIN. It was named after Almer Stillwell “Mike” Monroney, a senator from Oklahoma. Monroney sponsored the Automobile Information Disclosure Act of 1958, which demanded that auto manufacturers openly disclose details about new vehicles. The window sticker was the response to that demand. As other vehicle manufacturing laws passed, additional information was added to the sticker to provide a complete profile of the car, including basic vehicle information, equipment, add-on features, and compliance with safety regulations.

A window sticker must be affixed to the side window or windshield of any new car manufactured in the United States and cannot be removed by anyone other than the owner. Car dealers will incur fines of up to $1,000 for any missing or altered window stickers.

The only exception to this rule is vehicles weighing more than 8,500 pounds which do not require a window sticker.

What Does the Window Sticker Contain?

The contents of an original window sticker have changed a lot over the past few years, especially as new safety regulations come into play. With each edict, additional details are added. Some of the items shown on a window sticker include:

  • The manufacturer, make, model, color, and year of the vehicle.
  • The standard equipment on the vehicle and any warranty.
  • The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) and selling price.
  • City and highway fuel economy ratings. These are provided by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
  • Engine and transmission type and specs.
  • Any optional features, equipment, and add-ons, along with its corresponding price.
  • Crash test ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Basically, window stickers for cars are the government’s attempt at transparency, so that car buyers know precisely what they are paying for and getting with the purchase of a new car.

How Can I Find a Window Sticker by the VIN?

There may be many reasons why you want to obtain the original window sticker by VIN, and you can. If you suspect that your vehicle is missing a feature promised on the original window sticker, you can check it out by getting a replacement. Perhaps you want to sell the car and produce the original window sticker for the buyer. Regardless of why you need one, there are a few ways to obtain an original window sticker.

Some ways to get a window sticker by VIN are as follows:

Visit the Original Car Dealership

Visit the Original Car Dealership

You can always take a trip to visit the original car dealership where you purchased the car. Bring the VIN, and they should be able to look up your car or truck and print one out for you. You may have to provide proof of ID and ownership.

Visit the Port of Origin

That same dealership may be able to give you the name of the original port facility that shipped the car to your dealer. They typically keep copies of window stickers, and if you can get their name and number, you can call them for a copy of the window sticker by VIN.

Search Online

Search Online

You can search online at automobile auction websites and enter your VIN, manufacturer, make, model, and you might find a similar window sticker that matches yours.

Some car manufacturers also offer an online tool where you can enter your VIN to pull up an original window sticker by VIN and print it out. You can also try calling them if nothing else works.

Some online companies also specialize in creating brand new window stickers. If you contact one and provide them with your VIN, they can create one for you. You will most likely have to pay a fee, though.

VIN Lookup Tool

Another option is to use a  VIN lookup tool such as the free one on the NHTSA website where you can enter your VIN and see most of the information that would be contained on your original window sticker.

There are also third-party websites that offer this service and may provide you with additional details that the NHTSA would not.

Where to Find the VIN on Your Vehicle

Where to Find the VIN on Your Vehicle

Before asking yourself, “can I find a window sticker by the VIN”, you have to locate your vehicle’s VIN. There are a few different locations you can check for your VIN:

  • Your insurance paperwork.
  • The vehicle dashboard usually has a placard with the VIN on it.
  • A sticker on the door with tire pressure and the VIN.
  • Your vehicle registration.
  • The vehicle’s title.
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