Used Car Scam Affecting Thousands Nationwide

State and federal laws prohibit tampering with vehicle odometers.

A new report from Carfax shows that 190,000 cars have their odometers rolled back every year.

"It’s very important to research the history of your car,” said Jessica Warner, Panama City Beach resident.

Scams are costing Americans 760-million dollars in lost value and unexpected repairs.

There are ways you can avoid being scammed.

If you think someone's tampered with the odometer, check for oil-change stickers, service records or warranty cards.

Veteran mechanics say you can never have too much information on a used vehicle.

"Ask for any paper work the dealer might have. You can also go online and they do that Carfax,” Ronald Owens, Owner of Ronnie’s Auto Shop Owner. "Most of the time if the facility isn't letting you have the car inspected, you may want to think twice about that purchase."

A certified mechanic can also inspect the internal computer to see if someone has tampered with the odometer.

Investigators say the new digital odometers actually make it easier for scammers to alter the mileage.

"Don’t let your heart want to get that car. It’s worth a little bit of money and getting it inspected,” said Owens.

Experts say your first stop when decided on a new vehicle should be Carfax.

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