To learn more interpreting all the information provided on the data plate, here’s a link to our blog about data plates:


   Sometimes we find that a previous owner did not understand the importance of keeping the data plate intact and it has been painted over, or removed during a remodeling, so you will have to move on to method #2. Also, occasionally a homeowner decides to protect the data plate by removing it and putting it away for safe-keeping, and you will be  presented with a data plate that is detached from the wall. In this case it would be a good idea to cross-check it by method #2.

2) The vehicle identification number is also stamped in the front steel beam cross-member under the home (the beam that the tow hitch is bolted onto, perpendicular to the long side of the mobile home). You will likely have to remove the skirting across at least part of the front of the home to get to the I-beam. The numbers are stamped into the metal in letters about 2-inches high, running horizontally or vertically. If the home is a double-wide, there will be an “A” and “B” side, with the number for each side ending in “A” or “B.” The VIN number on the title paperwork for the home will end in “AB,” designating that the title is for both halves of a double-wide. Manufacturers create their own format and company abbreviation, and sometimes and sometimes the state abbreviation is placed first and the manufacturer abbreviation may be more than three digits.

While we hope you find this series of articles about home inspection helpful, they should not be considered an alternative to an actual home inspection by a local inspector. Also, construction standards vary in different parts of the country and it is possible that important issues related to your area may not be covered here.
©2015 - McGarry and Madsen Inspection.

Photo © Colleen Coombe -

Example of VIN number stamping

More blog posts about mobile homes:

  1. How can I tell if a mobile home is well constructed?

  2. How can I tell the difference between a manufactured home and a modular home?

  3. Does it make sense to remodel an older mobile home?

  4. What does the HUD tag look like and where do I find it on a mobile home?

  5. How can I know if my mobile home meets HUD Code?

  6. Where are the load bearing walls in a double-wide mobile home?

  7. How much does it cost to move a mobile home?

  8. Can I paint the vinyl covered wallboard in a mobile home?

  9. Does an addition to a mobile home have to comply with with HUD Code?

  10. What can I do to prevent dampness and mold in my mobile home?

  11. Can I install a mobile home myself?

  12. How can I remove water under my mobile home?

  13. What is a Park Model mobile home?

  14. Do I need stairs at all exit doors from a mobile home?

  15. What is an air conditioner for a mobile home called?

  16. What year were mobile homes required to become more storm resistant?

  17. What’s the difference between a manufactured and a mobile home?

  18. Can I remodel an old mobile home without a building permit?

  19. Where are Wind Zone 2 and Wind Zone 3 for mobile homes located?

  20. What are the most common problems with older mobile homes?

  21. Why are there cracks in the wallboard in a mobile home after its moved?

  22. Can you move a mobile home that is 20 years old in Florida?

  23. What is a pit set mobile home?

  24. Does a single-wide mobile home have interior bearing walls?

  25. Is 7 feet a normal height for a wall/ceiling in a mobile home?

  26. Do you have any tips for buying a used mobile home?

  27. Why is the floor tile cracked in my mobile home?

  28. Why is it important that a mobile home stay level throughout its lifetime?

  29. How much venting is required for mobile home skirting?

  30. What do I need to know about building an addition to a mobile home?

  31. What is the best air conditioner for a mobile home?

  32. What is a D-sticker mobile home?

  33. What is the life expectancy of a modular home?

  34. How do I upgrade my old (pre-1976) mobile home to meet HUD standards?

  35. When was the first double-wide mobile home manufactured?

  36. Why is my double-wide considered a HUD home?

  37. How energy efficient is a mobile home?

  38. Can I tell the year of a manufactured/mobile home from the HUD tag (red tag)?

  39. Can a mobile/manufactured home have a high radon problem?

  40. What are the HUD requirements for selling a remodeled or renovated mobile home?

  41. How many mobile/manufactured home manufacturers are licensed to sell their homes in Florida?

  42. Can a mobile/manufactured home get termites?

  43. What are the limitations on homesites where a mobile/manufactured home can be located?

  44. What does a home inspector look for when examining a mobile home crawl space?

  45. What is the difference between the electric service to a mobile home and a site built home?

  46. How can I make my mobile home more energy efficient?

  47. What are the ventilation requirements for bathrooms and kitchens in mobile homes?

  48. How much is a used mobile home worth?

  49. What would cause half of a double-wide mobile home to lose electric power?

  50. What are the common problems to look for when buying a mobile home that is older than 40 years?

  51. How many manufactured/mobile homes are there in the United States?

  52. Can I convert a shipping container into a HUD-Code manufactured/mobile home?

  53. Where do I find the water heater in a mobile home?

  54. How do HUD-code mobile/manufactured home standards compare to the IRC building code for site-built homes?

  55. What are the right words for the parts of a mobile/manufactured home?

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