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How to Find out When a Car Was Made

Updated April 17, 2017

Many manufacturers make updates to vehicles in production midway through a model year, substituting new parts for old ones. As a result, two cars built in the same year may have some different parts installed from the factory. If one of those parts fails, you will need to be armed with your vehicle's build date when purchasing the replacement part. Knowing your build date can also help with certain vehicle specifications, as well as, in rare cases, maintenance issues.

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  1. Go to the vehicle in question and open the driver's door.

  2. Look on the trailing edge of the driver's door, near the door latch for a white sticker with black writing printed on it. The sticker may also be somewhere in the driver's door frame itself, so if you do not see it on the door, check the door frame near the leading and trailing edges of the door.

  3. Look for the word "Date" on the sticker. This is usually located in the upper left corner of the sticker.

  4. Write down the four digits after the word "Date." This is your build date, which tells you what month and year the vehicle was built. This sticker is not applied until the vehicle is rolling off the assembly line. Since most modern vehicles are assembled in pieces over the course of several weeks, chances are narrowing it down to the day will not be possible.

  5. Tip

    Keep the piece of paper you wrote the date on with your automotive paperwork at home. At times, you may need to know this date for insurance reasons. Refer to this sticker for other useful information, such as the vehicle identification number (VIN), cold tire pressure settings, vehicle weight as well as paint and trim colour codes.

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Things You'll Need

  • Pen and paper

About the Author

Allen Moore's career includes awards in poetry and creative fiction, published lyrics, fiction books and nonfiction articles as well as a master certification in automotive service from the Ford Motor Company. Moore is a contributing writer for RF365.com and various other websites, a ghostwriter for Rainbow Writing and has over a dozen works of fiction currently in print.

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