Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Decoding

A vehicle identification number (VIN) is a unique code given to each vehicle in the United States.  This includes automobiles, trucks, and trailers.  The VIN decoder is used to download the year, make, model, and engine of the vehicle giving sales staff the necessary details when selling after market parts.  EBMS will download vehicle specifications from the  NHTSA | National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website and records the year, make, model, engine information, and other user defined information into the serialized item's specifications record.      

VIN Decoding Process     

The VIN decoder is included with the Serial No. Specs module of EBMS.  The decoder is activated whenever a VIN number is entered within the following dialogs:  

  1. Task and work orders:  Review Attaching Work Orders to Equipment or Vehicles for more details.  

  2. Sales orders and invoices:  Review Attaching a Vehicle to a Sales Invoice for more details.

This process copies the Year, Make, Model, Engine, and user defined information to the serialized item specs list as shown below:

The serial number may contain other specifications that the VIN decoder will not populate.   Note that the VIN decoder process will add these 4 specifications if they do not already exist.   The VIN information is copied to the serial number when the VIN (serial number) is created in EBMS.  Review Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Decoding for setup information.  

Complete the following steps to update vehicle specs from the NHTSA site:

  1. Enable the Automatically retrieve VIN data from website user setting found in Inventory > Options > Serial No. Specs tab as shown below:

  2. Open a task or work order and click on Serial No tab or a task with the Serial No settings.   Review Attaching a Vehicle to a Sales Invoice or Work Order section for details.

  3. Enter a VIN number into the Serial No. entry.  EBMS will create a new serial number record for the vehicle or equipment if a Default Serialized Item is properly configured.  The vehicle's year, make, model, engine, and any other configured specs will be automatically added to the new serial number record.   Review Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) Decoding for configuration details if the Descriptions and Info columns are not properly populated.  

  4. Right click on the Serial No. entry that contains VIN number and select one of the following options from the context menu:

    1. Use Import Year/Make/Model/Engine option to update the vehicle information:   This step will overwrite any information already recorded or will add the information that is not already recorded.

    2. Go to NHTSA site to open the NHTSA site.  Enter the VIN number to view vehicle information as described below.

    3. Browse NHTSA Raw Data to configure specific Serial No Spec Defaults as described in the end of this section.

NHTSA Overview

Select the Browse NHTSA Overview from the context menu:

NHTSA raw data

A large amount of information about the vehicle can be gleaned from the vehicle's raw data.  Vehicle details can be configured to be copied to the serialized item by completing the following steps:

  1. Select Browse NHTSA raw data from the context menu to open the following NHTSA XML data on your browser as shown below:
  2. Locate the decoded variable that contains the specific data to be copied to the serialized item specs list.  Note the information between the <DecodedVariable> tags.
  3. Copy the variable label between the <Variable> and </Variable> tags as highlighted above to the Description column of the Serial No Specs Defaults tab as shown below:

    This setting will add the value of this variable to all new serial number records.   This variable can also be added to an individual serial number records if the Serial No. Specs value is not broadly needed.