Each provincial vehicle registration authority or U.S. state applies brands to classify the condition of a vehicle. Normal, Salvage, Rebuilt and Irreparable are examples of Canadian vehicle brands. Vehicles are branded as Normal if there has been no unusual activity.
Normal: The vehicle has no negative branding in the reporting province.
Salvage: The vehicle’s structural and/or mechanical integrity has been compromised, and/or the repair costs are estimated to be higher than the car’s current market value.
Rebuilt: A vehicle previously declared as salvage or that was previously damaged but has had required repairs completed, inspected and declared safe to drive.
Irreparable: A vehicle that has been damaged so severely that it can never be rebuilt for safe use on the roads. Sometimes listed as “Non-Repairable.”
For more information on Canadian branding, please see: Brand
The following definitions pertain to U.S. titles only:
Junk: A vehicle damaged to the extent that the cost of repairing the vehicle exceeds approximately 75% of its pre-damage value. This damage threshold may vary by state; once one of these brands has been applied to a vehicle, it should never receive a Normal registration again.
Not Actual Mileage: When the seller certifies, under the Federal Odometer Act, that the odometer reading does not reflect the vehicle's actual mileage. This may occur because the odometer was tampered with, broken or replaced.
Lemon: A vehicle with problems that could not be fixed by the manufacturer. The specifics of what constitutes a lemon varies by state, but once a vehicle is branded a Lemon there are various legal remedies available to the consumer, which may include the manufacturer buying back or replacing the vehicle.
Fire Damage: The vehicle sustained major damage due to fire. In most states, fire damage titles are issued when the cost of repairing the vehicle for safe operation exceeds its fair market value.
Flood: States issue flood titles when a vehicle has been in a flood or has received extensive water damage.
Hail: The vehicle sustained major damage due to hail. In most states, hail damage titles are issued when the cost of repairing the vehicle for safe operation exceeds its fair market value.
Exceeds Mechanical Limits: A vehicle with a 5-digit odometer cannot accurately track mileage after 99,999 miles because the odometer rolls over. This title is the result of a seller certifying under the Federal Odometer Act, that the odometer reading exceeds the mechanical limits of the odometer.