VIN Look Ups

The Vehicle identification number (VIN) can provide a variety of information on a person’s vehicle, which of course includes the type of auto glass. While the 17 digit VIN gives an auto glass technician some knowledge on the vehicle, it’s important to remember that it doesn’t outline the exact windshield or parts needed to repair it. In fact, it does not include the glass part number for the vehicle. That’s often when an auto glass professional will use a decoder to help narrow down the list of materials needed for their project, and the potential glass needed for the windshield.

“Recently I have heard people in the industry tell me that they have a VIN decoder that picks out the right windshield for a vehicle. In my experience, the decoders may not complete the assignment,” Bob Beranek, president of Automotive Glass Consultants Inc., said.  This can be seen through the list of options a VIN decoder software program produces.

“I conducted a training course where we had to replace a 2015 Jeep Cherokee windshield. When we typed the VIN into the decoder on my software, it gave us over 20 windshields to choose from,” Beranek added.

Time is key especially when needing to find the right solutions for your customers. That’s one of the benefits in using a decoder. It allows a technician to get vehicle information at a faster rate. Some in the industry even recommend contacting the dealer if need be to find the correct windshield if it’s not clear after your decoder search.

This is part one of a series on VIN. Look out for the second part in a future glassBYTEs article.

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5 Responses to VIN Look Ups

  1. It would be great in the day and age of heads up display windshields, rain sensor windshields, condensation sensor windshields and cameras on windshields to be able to easily find out which one a car has by the vin number.

    • CD says:

      Better yet why not have all glass made with the identifying number on it. Either the dealer number or easier the NAGS number!!

  2. This absolutely drives me crazy. Our local Houston Toyota dealerships will no longer provide the OEM part numbers to auto glass companies and will not provide them to the customers either (had them try). This makes it impossible to cross-reference that number to an aftermarket part number in my eDirectGlass software program. Something needs to be done. PGW is offering a “search by VIN number” for a $1 service fee/search but we are already paying a pretty penny. Subaru has been difficult, too. Many times, the “OEM Part ID” does not match any listed in the program and Subaru swears it does not supersede any other part number. I will gladly buy another software program that works. Any suggestions?

  3. Pingback: VIN Lookups Part 2 | glassBYTEs.com

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