How to Read Car Manuals Online

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Although car manuals are great to have on hand for maintenance and repairs, they can sometimes be expensive to purchase. Many car manufacturers now allow you to read the car manual online for free. Others may charge a small fee.

Things You'll Need

  • VIN for the car
  • Adobe Reader


  1. Write down the year, model and make of your vehicle. You will need it to see if the manufacturer's manual is available for your car.

  2. Find the VIN number on your car. Many manufacturers will require you to register with your VIN number. It is usually written on your registration. You can also find it on the car--look on the driver's side in the frame or on the dash.

  3. Most car manuals online will be in the PDF format, so you will need Adobe Reader. If you do not have it, download the program from

  4. Check for a direct link to the manufacturer's website. It also lists what years are available and whether you need the VIN number or not.

Tips & Warnings

  • Not all car manuals will be available online. You may end up having to purchase a paper copy.



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