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Motorbike history check– free and premium checks explained

Motorbike history check

No one wants to buy a stolen bike, even if it’s their dream one, but buying a second-hand bike is a risky business, and you may end up buying a stolen one, or one having outstanding finance, or any other hidden past you’d wish it never had.

Want to try your luck? Let me tell you that 1 out of 3 UK registered bikes shows hidden history. So, if you know about statistics, you will prefer to check a bike’s history from a reputable history checking service available in the market. Plus, when you buy a motorbike from a private dealer, you are never sure whether the price you are paying is fair, even if you know that the bike has no hidden nasties.

All in one, it’s not something worth taking stress over when you can easily get an HPI check report showing the full history of the bike.

Can I get free motorcycle history check using its registration number?

Yes, you can get a bike history check for free, but not a full detailed report and for a good reason. The history checkers provide some information that is impossible to get free because they, themselves, are charged by government agencies to obtain it.

Therefore, be wary of any company claiming to provide this information for free because no company will ever pay from their pocket to give you complete information for free. Common sense, right?

However, some information is free, which are:

  • Full MOT history
  • Mileage at the time of the recent MOT test
  • VED status (MOT and tax due date)
  • Bikes’ age
  • CO2 emission
  • Import status
  • Bike colour
  • Colour Change(s)

What’s the cost for checking a used bike history?

You may be confused about whether the bike history check is cheaper than the car! You’re mistaken. Whether it’s a car, bike, truck, van, or any vehicle, the price stays the same as long as the history report provider is the same.

If you ask how much general bike HPI checks cost, then there is no one correct answer. Everyone has set their own price even though the information they provide is exactly the same and from the same sources. But anyway, here are the prices of some UK’s most trusted vehicle history checking providers:

Note: Since 2014, number of motorbike theft remains same in England Wales. Its very crucial to check the complete history of a bike before buying it. Here is the statistics made by Statista, one of the leading market and consumer data provider in the UK.

stolen bike statistics

What other details does a premium motorbike history check provide?

A premium motorbike history report covers all information required to keep you safe from all frauds. And remember, most information is directly sourced from trusted sources like DVLA, Experian, MIAFTR, SMMT, DVSA, and other government agencies.

So, relax the information you see in the report is 100% accurate as long as you use reputable history checking providers, some of which are mentioned below. All genuine bike history checkers’ reports will show the same information, which will include:

  • Recorded as stolen
  • Insurance write-off
  • Outstanding Finance
  • Number of previous owners
  • Recorded as scrapped
  • Imported or exported
  • Logbook check
  • Number plate changes
  • Mileage discrepancies and anomaly
  • Make and model
  • Full MOT history
  • CO2 emissions.

And when using a service provider, remember to check whether they are giving a data guarantee or not. The service providers mentioned in the above table offer a data guarantee of up to £30,000, meaning if any information turns out to be false, the history checker will compensate for it.

Can a bike check show previous owner details?

Absolutely not. Whether for a bike, car, or motorbike, a history check will never reveal previous owner details such as their name or address. You will only see how many previous keepers the vehicle had – not more than that. Because the DVLA restrict this information from all companies and disclosing such information is illegal. You can request the DVLA to reveal the registered keeper or owner’s contact information by filling up v888 form.

Answering your questions

How to check if a motorbike is stolen using VIN numbers?

You can check the motorbike’s stolen status following any one of these steps:

  1. Run a check on VIN numbers through your local police station. Since it’s not publicly accessible, you can request law-enforcement personnel to run a check on it.
  2. Use a VIN Check tool available at the National Insurance Crime Bureau website.
  3. Enter the VIN numbers through an online VIN- check service.

Is the free check enough to buy a second-hand bike in the UK?

No. If you are buying a used bike, then you should get the full facts on its first because it’s much easier to put up a fake VIN or lie about a bike’s history than it is for a car. The history check is essential even for a new bike because, as per the statistics, around two-thirds of all new bikes are bought using a finance package. And obviously, you don’t want to end up settling someone else’s finance, right?

What is the difference between a bike HPI check and a motorbike history check?

There is no difference at all. Since HPI Ltd was the first company to offer history checking services, it’s now their name used for vehicles or bike’s history checking. Plus, there is no difference in checking the history of cars, bikes, vans, motorbikes, etc.