Some 43 million vehicles have been recalled this year, so how does a driver know if a car has had a fault or defect fixed? Safety regulators just made it easier, unveiling a more precise way for vehicle owners to search online to find out if their cars or motorcycles have been recalled by the manufacturer.The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said owners can now search for possible safety recalls on the agency's SaferCar.gov website by using the unique Vehicle Identification Number. Previously, vehicle owners searched on the NHTSA website by make, model and year, but the number of vehicles actually subject to a recall could be smaller than the search result. Searching by the 17-digit VIN gives a precise result. Only about 75 percent of recalled cars are brought in by consumers to be fixed and the agency said it hopes the new search tool will boost that rate.