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How To Check Car Safety Ratings

Posted August 28, 2012 by JoseHurtado to Financial Advice 0 0
This post was written by a EasyFinance.com Community member. The views expressed below may not reflect the views of EasyFinance.com.

When purchasing a vehicle, it’s not enough to look at its paintjob or its interiors to see if they match your style. One of the most important things to learn about your new car is its safety ratings. Wondering where to find them? Here are helpful tidbits which can help you determine your car’s safety ratings.

Ratings issued by the American Government

The government is trusted by its citizens, so if you want to know if you’re safe behind the steering wheel, then look for websites with a .gov suffix which are involved in the New Car Assessment Program or NCAP. Ratings from this governing body are elicited after conducting a test with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

If you want to have the safest car in the market, select a vehicle given a 5-star rating by the NCAP. This grade means that the car can keep you safe in case of a side crash, full front crash, or rollover.

You can also determine the safety ratings of older vehicles by typing in the model, make and year manufactured. Unfortunately, not all models are rated by the NCAP as the government did not conduct a lot of safety tests in the past.

Ratings issued by Insurance Companies

You can also learn more about your car’s safety ratings by searching for websites which present ratings given by the Vehicle Research Center of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Vehicles granted a “good rating” by the institute means that it can keep you safe from front crashes and side crashes. While a car with an ‘acceptable’ rate is okay, it’s best to go for a car with a ‘good’ rate. Be wary of a car with a poor rating from the institute!

Apart from side crash and front crash tests, the institute also gives ratings for a car’s performance regarding rear-impact and offset frontal accidents. New vehicular models also undergo the roof crush test to determine if it will stay intact after a rollover. Bumper evaluations have also been conducted on new cars to determine the extent of damage to the bumper after a low-speed collision.

You can also look for the ratings of previous models to have a ‘feel’ of your car’s track record when it comes to safety.

Ratings from the European National Car Assessment Program

Maybe an American car is not your type. No matter where your car came from, you should determine its’ car safety rating by searching the web for renowned international organizations based in other countries, such as Europe.

The government’s NCAP program is synonymous to the European New Car Assessment Program (ENCAP). When your car is given a 5-star rating, it means that it provides the riders (adult and child) and even pedestrians the protection that they need.

The ratings given by the ENCAP were not haphazardly done, because adult dummies are put into the test to determine their conditions after side, front and pole impact crashes. Child dummies ranging 18 months to 3 years are also put to the test to check if the child is secure in the car.

The dummy’s positions are also changed to see what kind of damage it receives. ENCAP ratings also include the findings for a whiplash test.

About JoseHurtado: This article is provided courtesy of AutoLoanExperts.com, a consumer finance website providing information and tools on bad credit car loans and other personal credit services.

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