Cash Auto Salvage

Everything You Need To Know About Auto Salvage

auto salvage

Are you thinking about selling your car for cash to an auto salvage yard?

When you sell your car to a salvage yard, you get instant cash. Salvaging a vehicle can be an excellent means of getting an unwanted vehicle off of your hands quickly and easily.

There is more to auto salvage than meets the eye, however. It’s important to know the ins and outs of salvage before you sell your car to a yard.

Read on to learn more about how salvage works, so that you can rest assured you are making the right decision.

1. The Definition of Auto Salvage

If you haven’t ever heard of salvaging a vehicle, it’s worth getting a clear-cut definition. A lot of people assume that to salvage a vehicle means to turn in a totaled car over to a company that will essentially “junk it.”

This isn’t at all close to the full story.

Auto salvage is one of several options that car owners have when it comes to selling or getting rid of a car quickly. It presents a quick and easy way to get instant cash for your car, without having to worry about listing your vehicle privately through Craigslist, trading it in, or selling it to a dealership.

When you agree to have your car salvaged, you will sell it to a salvage yard for an agreed price. We will cover what a salvage quote looks like and how it’s created in the next step.

Salvage yards will then remove every single usable part from the used, junk, end-of-life, or unwanted vehicle. This can include any and all hardware, tires, wiring, exterior and interior panels, and lighting. The company will then repurpose these parts as much as possible.

Before the hardware is taken out, the yard will actually capture all fluids in the vehicle and even try to repurpose these for other vehicles or dispose of them properly.

Metal scraps that aren’t deemed useful will be recycled, and parts can be refurbished and then sold. Even tires can be retreaded and resold to customers.

Some salvage yards will sell refurbished or scrap parts on site to customers, or online as retail.

2. What A Salvage Quote Looks Like

Now that you’ve got a good grasp of what it actually means to salvage a vehicle, you’ll get a good sense of what an auto salvage quote or offer will look like.

When you call up an auto salvage yard to inquire after a quote for your vehicle, you’ll have to provide the year, make, and model of the vehicle. You will also be asked to detail the mileage the vehicle has and any damage it may have sustained since you purchased it.

The more detailed a description of your vehicle that you provide, the more accurate your quote. You can even type in all of this information and submit it online without having to talk to a representative.

However, we definitely recommend getting on the phone with a rep so that you can make sure you get the highest price possible for your vehicle.

Quotes will vary based on your vehicle’s condition, age, and usable parts. They will also depend on the type of parts that are useable and what demand is for these parts. The price of scrap metal also changes all the time.

Totaled or wrecked vehicles, in general, will have lower quotes than driveable, lower mileage vehicles.

These quotes are often free offers, meaning that you can take it or leave it without any strings attached. You’ll get this amount and this amount only in cash when you drop off your vehicle at the yard or have it picked up.

3. Who Should Salvage Their Vehicle

Not sure whether or not you should be salvaging your vehicle?

If you’re trying to get rid of your car, you luckily have a lot of options in front of you. To determine whether or not salvaging is right for you, consider first and foremost the condition of your vehicle.

If you’ve totaled or severely wrecked your vehicle, salvaging it is probably a good idea. This means you can get at least some cash for your wrecked vehicle, and you’ll have it off your hands. Plus, you’ll sell it knowing that some of it can be refurbished and resold to other car owners or auto companies.

Owners of vehicles that have been damaged in a flood, hurricane, storm, or other weather-related incidents should turn to auto salvage yards as a great way to get rid of these vehicles. They’ll get fast cash for weather-damaged vehicles that can be put towards a new car.

A lot of people have much older cars sitting on their properties. These cars may just be too old to run properly or have other mechanical issues. These car owners would benefit from salvaging their vehicles.

In general, if you’ve got an unwanted, used, or otherwise damaged vehicle you want to get off your hands quickly, salvage yards are your answer. Even people with newer and higher quality vehicles can rely on salvage yards for an effective and lucrative way to get rid of their cars.

4. How Salvage Yards Differ

Auto salvage yards are all over the country. Chances are you have a location just down the street!

Not every auto salvage yard is the same, however. It’s important to keep in mind how these yards differ so that you can feel comfortable going to the right one.

Some yards sell car parts that are refurbished online or at a shop on-site. Others simply collect and salvage vehicles. You’ll find salvage yards that work in partnership with metal recycling companies and those that do the recycling and refurbishing on the premises.

Yards will also differ depending upon areas and types of vehicles they purchase. For example, you may find that a certain company doesn’t remove abandoned vehicles. Others may only accept junk or scrap cars.

If you are unclear about any of the services a yard in your area provides, reach out to them to clarify.

5. How to Get The Best Deal

It is definitely possible to feel confident about the quote you’ve been given by an auto salvage company for your used vehicle. You can get the best deal by doing your homework, providing detailed information to the salvage yard about your vehicle, and choosing the right company.

Research salvage companies in your area and gather as many different quotes as possible for your vehicle. In general, you should aim for an average of all the numbers you’ve been given. It also can’t hurt to do some hunting around online.

Make sure you give as much detailed information as possible to the salvage company over the phone or in person so that you can get an accurate quote. The right company will be one with excellent customer service and a widespread and well-known professional reputation.

You also want to make sure that you avoid junkyard scams. A lot of fake companies are out there wanting to get a hold of your vehicle and not deliver on the “quotes” they offer.

Scams will often involve hidden fees or charges (such as a towing charge). They may try to put a lot of pressure on you to make a decision in a short amount of time. Scam companies will also offer discounts or coupons that are highly restricted to time windows and eligibility.

The best way to avoid scam companies is too wary of all of these things but to also talk to someone in person at an actual location. Read customer reviews, ask questions, and make sure you get clear answers to everything you ask. You can always walk away if you don’t feel convinced or comfortable.

6. Salvaging Cars Can Be Eco-Conscious

People who want to sell their cars and also support the environment will love working with auto salvage companies. This is because companies salvage, refurbish, and/or recycle literally everything in your car!

This means that used or junk vehicles aren’t just going into a landfill. And because landfills are getting more and more full, it’s important to seek out eco-conscious ways to handle our vehicles.

Auto salvage yards are also doing the environment a huge favor by removing junk cars from old properties and sides of roads. Junk cars can leak toxic fluids and metals into the soil, damaging soil quality and potentially leading to contaminated water sources. Junk cars can also impact valuable ecosystems, particularly in wetland areas.

Contact an auto salvage yard if you are looking for a way to truly reduce, reuse, and recycle your unwanted vehicle.

7. How to Decide It’s Time

If you’ve read through this post and are thinking it may be time to sell your car to a salvage yard, awesome! Let’s make sure it’s actually time to do so.

If you are spending more on monthly maintenance on your car than the actual monthly payment, it’s probably time for a scrap. Vehicles ideal for salvage are those that cost more to run than is actually feasible for your budget.

Assess the safety of your vehicle, as well as the condition of your car’s engine and transmission. If there are any repeated safety issues that cannot be fixed, definitely decide to scrap. If you’ve replaced the vehicle’s engine and/or transmission twice, you might be en route to a junkyard.

You’ll also want to reach out to a salvage yard if the condition of your car’s body is badly rusted. Rusted vehicles can be difficult if not impossible to sell, even privately and on your own terms.

8. Other Things to Keep in Mind

There are some other things to keep in mind before you say yes to that amazing salvage quote.

If you’re still financing your car, you won’t be eligible to sell your vehicle to a salvage yard. Salvage companies will only accept vehicles that have been fully paid off.

If you do sell your car to a salvage yard, you’ll have to collect your license plates before you hand over your vehicle for good. You’ll then need to take these plates and return them to your local motor vehicle department if you aren’t transferring them to a new vehicle.

Also, make sure to cancel your insurance if you have auto insurance the moment you sell your car to a salvage company. You’ll want to check with your state’s rules to see if you need a title to sell your car to a salvage yard. Some states require it while others simply require a driver’s license and proof of registration.

Everything You Need to Know About Auto Salvage

If you are thinking about scrapping that old clunker in your backyard or want to figure out what to do with that totaled vehicle in your driveway, you may want to think about carting your car to a salvage yard.

Before you do, it’s important to know everything you can about auto salvage and how it works. Auto salvage yards purchase used or junk cars from vehicle owners for an agreed upon cash value. This quote is determined by a variety of factors.

If you accept your cash offer, the salvage company will either pick up your vehicle or have you drop it off at a set location. You’ll get instant cash for your vehicle.

Salvaging vehicles is not for everyone, so keep in mind that you should salvage your car only when you’ve assessed its condition, year, make, and model. Do your research so that you avoid scams and get the best deal possible.

At Cash Auto Salvage, we give free, no-hassle offers for junk or used vehicles you’ve decided to salvage. You’ll get a free cash offer after having a conversation with one of our representatives, and if you decide to go for it you’ll also get free towing. Walk away with cash on the spot and a space cleared in your driveway for your next dream vehicle.

It doesn’t matter what condition your vehicle is in. Get your free offer today!

Selling Junk Cars for Cash: Factors That Impact the Amount You Receive

junk yard

People who sell their junk cars for cash provide the raw materials to transport the nation.

Each year, between the US and Canada, enough automobiles are recycled to produce about thirteen million new cars.

But when you go to sell your scrap car, it can be difficult to know if you’re getting a fair price. This is likely your first time investigating what metal is worth and how the parts of your vehicle could be picked and pulled for profit.

Once you start adding up the value of the raw materials and the parts in your car, you may expect a big check when you hit the yard. Unfortunately, it isn’t that simple.

It can be difficult to know why the car you spent thousands of dollars on is now just worth a few hundred bucks. Keep reading to find out the factors that affect the price.

The Price of Scrap Metal Is Declining

Steel is a commodity that’s shipped all over the world. This makes its price tied to the global economy. It also accounts for the price you’ll get for your metal when you trade junk cars for cash.

Supply and demand affect steel prices and has brought them to a peak of nearly eight hundred dollars a ton. But these same forces are responsible for the extreme drop in 2016 to less than four hundred dollars a ton.

A big factor in the decline of steel prices is the shift China has recently made. They’ve gone from a manufacturing powerhouse to a country with high living and environmental standards.

Since they accounted for a large portion of the demand for American steel, prices have been steadily dropping. People trading their junk cars for cash can’t get the same value for their steel that they would have several years ago.

Vehicles Have to Be Drained and Stripped

Before a vehicle can be crushed, a junkyard has to drain it of all fluids and remove all unusable parts. This labor-intensive process is reflected in the amount you get when you trade your junk cars for cash.

One way to recover some of this money is to remove the parts yourself before scrapping the vehicle. You could sell them online or to a parts shop to regain more value.

In addition to removing parts, you should also get the gas out of your vehicle before you bring it to the scrap yard. Otherwise, the junkyard may charge you for additional labor.

The final thing you should do is clean out your vehicle to preserve its value. You need to remove all garbage and personal items.

Any effort you make to reduce the amount of work the junkyard has to do will be worth it. It will be reflected in the final check you get when you scrap your junk cars for cash.

The Cost of Transporting the Vehicle

Most often, when selling your junk cars for cash, you’ll need to have it brought to the junkyard by someone else. It’s likely the vehicle isn’t drivable or functioning properly.

There are three ways you could have your vehicle brought to the junkyard:

  • Have the vehicle towed to the scrapyard
  • Use roadside assistance or insurance coverage for reduced costs
  • Rely on the scrapyard to provide a towing service for you

If you choose to have the junkyard tow your vehicle for you, you’ll have to deduct the cost of this service from the check you get for your car. Depending on the distance, this could get quite expensive.

On average, this kind of tow costs about a hundred dollars. To avoid this charge, try to sell your car to the junkyard while it’s still in a drivable condition. Then you won’t have to worry about towing it.

Also, your car is most valuable while it’s still in working condition.

Deterioration of Your Car’s Parts

Around 80% of a vehicle can be recycled. Between using the parts on other vehicles of the same model and recovering the scrap metal, they can be stripped down completely. This means every part potentially has value.

But many people hesitate before they sell their junk cars for cash. They may consider things like restoration. They may dream of the day when they’ll have time and money to revamp their vehicle to the car of their dreams.

Or they may just want to sell their vehicle to a “real” buyer. They may have trouble accepting the fact that their car is good for little more than scrap metal.

Some people hold onto vehicles that aren’t running well because they’re afraid that their other vehicle will break down. This means their “junk” car will be their only option.

But no matter how good your reasons seem, you shouldn’t waste any more time before you trade your junk cars for cash. Waiting to sell your car is like throwing good money out the window.

The longer it sits, the longer the parts deteriorate. The ones that deteriorate the quickest are also the most valuable to salvage companies.

The parts in your car are made for movement. When a car isn’t driven regularly, rust can spread quickly through the vehicle.

The more rust on the body of your vehicle, the less the steel will be worth. Therefore, it’s important to avoid rust accumulation.

Rubber parts like window gaskets and tires can become brittle and break apart to the touch. If all the fluids have not been cleaned out of the car before it’s parked, any gas left in its tank will absorb water in the air. This can ruin the engine if you try to start it.

Animals can also infest your vehicle, building homes in the steering column and tampering with the wiring. Corrosion is another pesky force that can degrade valuable parts of your vehicle, like the starter and alternator.

All these problems come from leaving your car parked for too long. You should do something about your junk vehicle today.

To get the best price when selling your junk cars for cash, bring your vehicle in as soon as you’ve retired it from the road.

How to Get the Most for Your Vehicle

To sell your scrap metal or vehicle to a business, you first should establish ownership of it.

You’ll need to have proof of ownership in order to sell the car. You should bring the title of your vehicle with you when you go to the scrapyard.

Next, you’ll want to assess the value of your vehicle. When trading junk cars for cash, you should start with the market price of the vehicle and work from there.

You may be asked a lot of questions about your vehicle to assess its value. A few frequently questions asked are:

  • What kind of damage does it have?
  • Does it run?
  • What’s wrong with it?

You should answer all these questions truthfully. If you don’t like the price you get, you should call around to other local junkyards.

It can also be helpful to call some yards in other cities nearby. Prices can range substantially and a longer drive may be worth the money in the end.

Once you’ve chosen a location to trade your junk cars for cash, you should deliver your car yourself to get the most money for it. Again, don’t forget to bring the title, or you may be sent home to get it.

How Lemon Laws May Affect Your Trade

When you’re trying to sell a junk car, there are some laws you must abide by. The United States has a set of “Lemon Laws” that protect consumers from unfair treatment by car salespeople.

Most of these laws don’t apply here, but some can come back to haunt you.

Before you sell your junk cars for cash, you should do some research. Find out what the lemon laws are for the stat you plan to sell the vehicle in.

“As Is” Condition

You need to find out if your state allows you to sell your vehicle in “as is” condition.

The other option is to pursue a salvaged car title to legally receive money for your car. Sales involving cars with a salvaged title often operate under different laws.

Mileage Tampering

The next lemon law is the mileage tampering law.

Rolling back mileage is one of the most common ways for a seller to fool a buyer into buying a car that’s in poor working order.

Changing the odometer is punishable by law. So never try to roll back the mileage on your car in an attempt to get more money for it.

Status at Time of Sale

One more thing you should look into is how your state will regard your sale.

In many states, private owners operate under one set of laws while dealerships will operate under another.

You may assume that you’re a private seller. But if you’ve been selling junk cars for cash consistently, you may have reached dealer status in your community.

For example, in Massachusetts, anyone that has sold more than four vehicles within a year’s time frame is considered a dealer. They’ll be held to the same laws as car dealers.

Staying Under the Maximum

Don’t want to have to worry about abiding by state lemon laws when you sell your junk cars for cash? It’s helpful to find out if there’s a price at which the requirement is unnecessary.

For example, many states will only enforce refunds under lemon laws when a vehicle sells for more than seven hundred dollars.

Using Kelly Blue Book as a Starting Point

Looking up the resale value of your vehicle is free and easy if it’s still running.

If it isn’t, you can’t expect a junkyard to give you money for your vehicle that’s even remotely near this price. The Blue Book value assumes that your car is in good working condition. If that were the case, though, you wouldn’t be scrapping it.

The Kelly Blue Book value is still helpful as a rule of thumb. You can use it to estimate whether the offer you get from the scrap yard is high enough.

One way to calculate this value is to start with the Blue Book value. Then subtract how much it will cost for any repairs that are necessary for the car to be in sellable shape.

In this way, you’ll have a rough guide you can use to estimate what the car would be worth in different situations. This might include if it was sold at an auction or repaired and flipped at the scrap yard.

Where to Trade Junk Cars for Cash

When you have a vehicle to scrap, you want to get the best price for it.

But it can be difficult to know where to turn. Figuring out what factors are involved in the price of your vehicle is a great place to start, but where do you go from there?

Cars that have the most value are those that run. It’s also best when they’re rust-free and have been cleaned out beforehand.

The more work that a scrapyard has to do, the less they will give you for your car.

Be sure to look into lemon laws in your area before you go to sell your car. You want to ensure that you’re doing everything legally. By being aware of all the laws in your area, you’ll be able to command a price with confidence.

If you’re selling your junk car and are looking for a trustworthy company to recycle it with, contact us to see how much you can get to scrap you car.

What’s Best: Junk a Car, Trade It in, or Donate It?

junk car trade car donate car

When it comes time to get rid of your car–whether you simply want to be done with an old car or because you’re ready for a new one, deciding what to do with it can be tough. You’re probably asking yourself “what price can I get for my car?”

Is it best to junk a car? Trade it in? Or donate it?

The answer to that question depends on you, your car, your preferences, and your goals.

If your car is not running–or simply aging, making it time to think about these things–know that you do have some options. There are ways to make money off your old junker of a car, even if it’s a small amount.

But first, it’s important to understand exactly what happens with each of the options for getting rid of a car, whether you opt to junk a car, trade it in, or donate it.

Trading: The Most Popular Option

Trading in your car can be a daunting task. The process can seem overwhelming. Thankfully, there are many tips and tricks out there for figuring out how to navigate the trade-in process.

Trading in a car can be a great option when it’s time to part ways with your car. When you trade in your car, you put the worth of your car toward the purchase price of a new car. Trading in a car is basically selling it to a dealership.

You’ll work with a dealership to sell them your car in exchange for a certain amount of money off of a new car. Trading in a car is a very common process and it’s not that difficult.

However, car dealers make a great bit of money from people trading in their cars. This is because it saves people a lot of the hassle of selling their own car, which can be quite a bit of work.

Dealerships will first offer you a price much lower than the actual value of your car so that they can turn around and flip it in order to make a profit.

Selling your vehicle privately will almost always lead to you getting the most money for your car. However, selling to a dealership can save you quite a bit of headache and time.

Perks of Trading in a Car

Trading in a car vs selling it yourself comes down to convenience and what your next steps are, especially if they include buying or acquiring a new car to replace the one you’re selling.

Trading in a car can help offset the cost of a new or replacement car. You can apply the value of the car you’re trading in toward the price of a new car.

When it’s time to get rid of your car or simply time to get a new car, trading it in will help you to get the most value for your car. So if your car is still working well and in pretty good condition, trading it in is probably your best bet.

The bottom line is that trading in your car will provide some degree of value in return.

Why Should I Donate My Car?

If you are not attached to getting the most value possible out of your car, or if your car has extremely low trade-in value, the question of deciding between trading vs donating can be difficult to answer. There are perks to either route.

Before making a decision, you should consider how it would look for you to donate a car.

There is a lot to understand about the IRS, rules, and all the different caveats when it comes to taxes and deductions. All of this can be quite confusing.

Still, donating a car to charity can be a great option. In fact, in certain cases, it makes financial sense to donate a car to charity.

Yes, donating a car usually does involve quite a bit of paperwork, but it can be done.

You must make sure the charity qualifies, and you must itemize the returns on your taxes very carefully. And you should know that getting fair market value on your car in the form of a tax deduction is very rare.

However, if you decide to move forward with donating your car, you will receive some of a tax benefit, plus the satisfaction of knowing you helped out a charity in need.

How Do I Know If I Should Donate My Car?

Donating a car is definitely good karma!

But besides earning some karma, when is donating a car the best option? What are the other benefits?

If you simply want to get rid of your car, quickly and don’t care about getting any sort of value out of it–and if you want to do some good in the world–donating a car is the perfect option.

However, if you want to maximize the tax benefits you can receive from donating your car, there will definitely be a bit more work involved.

When you want to do something good and perform a selfless act of helping others, donating a car is a great way to do so.

When you donate a car, you won’t receive any cash or payment for the value of your car (however low), but you will receive the warm feeling of knowing you paid it forward in a big way.

Junking a Car

Though trading in a car and donating a car both have their perks, these options are not always available.

Sometimes, due to your situation or the condition of your car, junking the car is the only thing you can do. Luckily, it’s not such a bad idea.

In fact, as you learn more, you may find that the option to junk a car can be a very desirable option, for many different reasons.

What Does It Mean to Junk a Car?

If you’re not sure what it means to junk a car, don’t worry. It’s pretty simple to understand.

To junk a car is exactly what it sounds like: putting your car in the junk pile once you can get no more use out of it.

When you junk a car, it goes to the junk yard. Cars in junk yards are stripped down to their most basic form and then crushed to a smaller size.

Junk yards are the proper place to put a car that no longer has any life left in it.

So, essentially, to junk a car is to throw it away in a big trash can. Junking a car is putting it where it’s supposed to go when it has run its course.

Check out our guide to junking your car to learn more.

Why Should You Junk a Car?

If you’re considering junking your car, you may be wondering: why should you?

There are other options for disposing of your car, like trading it in or donating it to charity, so what’s the point of junking your car?

To junk a car can be beneficial in many ways, but you should know enough about your options to feel confident that you are making the right choice for your unique situation.

It’s Good for the Environment

For one, it’s environmentally friendly. There are many environmental benefits of junking your car.

It may not seem like it, but to junk a car is a form of recycling. The basic components of your car can be repurposed for other uses when you junk it.

It’s Safe

It’s also safer. Your car contains toxic substances that you may not know about. Examples include battery acid, antifreeze, mercury, and more.

Even if you do not know about them, however, it’s important to dispose of them properly. Junk yards know exactly how to dispose of these chemicals the right way.

Junking a car means disposing of your car at a place that is equipped to handle the toxic substances your car contains.

It’s a Wise Financial Move

As if those reasons are not enough, you can also make some extra cash when you junk a car!

All of the car parts that you have no use for anymore are worth some amount of money, however small.

If you have a junk car sitting on your property taking up space and creating an eyesore, you might as well get rid of it and make a little extra money while doing so.

Contact us for a free quote if you’re wondering how much you can get for your junk car.

It’s Pretty Much Hassle-Free

Lastly, it’s easy to do.

You may have a lot of questions about the car junking process. But don’t worry: it’s not very difficult to understand, and we can assist you throughout the process.

Junking your car is usually the simplest option and the one that will save you the headache.

Most junk car removal companies will come to your property to tow the car for you, so no need to worry about how you’re going to get your car to the junk yard.

Deciding to junk your car is often the easiest route.

Junking your car may very well be the most simple way to get the junk car off your property and out of your mind.

When’s the Right Time to Junk a Car?

Is it time to junk your car? Usually, junking a car is a last resort.

But when you have exhausted every possible option for repairing or selling your car, it’s time to junk your car.

There are a few questions you’ll want to ask yourself before sending your car to the junk yard.

Knowing the answer to these things will help you decide if it’s truly time to junk your car.

Questions to Help You Decide Whether It’s Time to Junk Your Car:

How Much Is the Cost of Future Repairs?

Is the cost of future repairs more than you’d spend on a car loan payment (for a new car)?

If so, it might be time to junk your car.  If future repairs are simply too costly, cut your losses and junk your car.

In addition to the financial cost, you must consider the amount of time and mental energy you will invest in the car.

Will keeping your car running take more time, money, and energy than it’s worth? Is the cost of repairing and maintaining your car simply more than you are able or willing to handle?

Then it may be time to junk your car.

Do You Spend a Ton on Gas?

Then you may want to consider getting rid of your car.

The newer the car, usually the more fuel efficient it is. Older, junkier cars tend to feel like throwing money down the drain when it comes to gas consumption.

Have You Already Spent Way Too Much Money on Your Car?

The only way to stop the bleeding is to get rid of your car. Stop throwing money into the bottomless pit that is your junk car, and make the move to finally get rid of it.

Junk cars tend to be huge money suckers, so free yourself from all the expenses and start investing in something smarter, like a new car.

Is Your Car Totaled?

Wondering if your car is truly totaled?

Determining if your car is totaled can be a confusing process.

However, if your car is totaled, you probably don’t have a lot of options. Selling it won’t work, and donating it to charity probably doesn’t make sense in this case either.

When your car is totaled, the best move is likely to junk your car.

Have You Decided Junking Your Car Is the Right Move for You?

Of course, you always want to make sure you are getting the most value possible from your car.

But if the questions above apply to you, it’s probably time to junk a car.

If you’ve decided that junking or selling your car is the right move for you, we can help.

Check out our post on 10 things to do before you junk a car so you’ll know what steps you should take before waving goodbye to your car.

Still asking “how much money can I get for my car”? Call us at 855-540-4649 and we’ll give you a honest, no-hassle offer.

Junk Yards Near Me: A Customer Guide to Selling Junk Cars

how to sell a junk car

When disposal of your vehicle becomes a necessity there are many factors to consider before deciding on your vehicle’s final resting place. Whether the vehicle is totaled or has been sitting around collecting rust, what do you do with it?

Cash Auto Salvage is excited to provide this comprehensive and informative guide. We offer solid advice and answer commonly asked questions about selling a junk car for cash.

Have you recently totaled your car in an accident? Do you have an old junker you’re ready to sell?

Our guide is written for you. Read on and you will learn:

  • What criteria are used to determine if a car or truck is classified as “junk”
  • The different selling options available to the owner of a junk car
  • Important information on how to handle issues with the vehicle title
  • What to look for in a reputable junk car dealer in your area
  • Important tips to help you successfully sell your car for cash

Full of useful information, this customer guide will prepare you for the task of selling your car to a junk or salvage yard.

What is a “Junk Car?”

There are two distinct definitions used to define a junk car. Make sure you understand which category your wrecked or unrepairable vehicle falls under. It will help you decide what to do when it is time to sell your junk car.

Total Loss

If you were involved in an accident you’re probably waiting to hear from your auto insurance company. The appraiser may determine your vehicle to be a “total loss” if the damage is extensive. This also may be referred to as “totaled”.

If your vehicle is totaled (or deemed a total loss), this means that the cost of repairing your damaged vehicle is more than the current value of your car. In this scenario, a junked vehicle is also referred to as a salvage vehicle.

End-of-Life Vehicle (ELV)

A vehicle that cannot be repaired or safely driven on the road is considered an ELV. These vehicles are inoperable.

An ELV designation is given if the vehicle: suffered large-scale damage from an accident; has no monetary value due to extreme deterioration or age; has been stationary for an extended period of time (typically abandoned cars and vehicles missing necessary parts).

Before selling an End-of-Life vehicle to a junk car buyer it’s a good idea to locate the title or apply for a replacement.

What to Do With a Total Loss Vehicle

In the case of a total loss you have two options: pay to repair it or junk it.

Repair It

If you choose to keep your totaled car and pay for the repairs, a salvage title is required before it can be driven. Check your particular states’ regulations to find out what is required to obtain a salvage title.

Most statutes will read something like: “If the owner retains a motor vehicle upon settlement of a claim with an insurance company, the owner must apply for a salvage certificate of title in their name.”

Issues With Repair

It’s important to be aware of possible issues you may encounter before deciding to repair your totaled vehicle.

  • The likelihood of future repairs is high – the severe trauma of an accident compromises the integrity of a vehicle; there may be internal or structural flaws that were not detected during repair.
  • Salvaged vehicles suffer major depreciation – used car valuators such as Kelley Blue Book and NADA Guides do not apply to vehicles with a salvaged title. This makes it hard to determine an accurate value for the vehicle. You will find it difficult to negotiate a fair market value price should you decide to sell.
  • Prepare for auto insurance woes — many insurance companies only offer extremely limited coverage for salvage cars and trucks, or may choose not to offer insurance at all
  • Troubles with resale – the majority of new and used car dealerships will not accept a vehicle with a salvage title as a trade-in. Since vehicle history reports are available online, selling to private buyers may also be difficult.

It’s important to note that an auto salvage yard cannot buy your junk car if you still owe money on the vehicle.

Sell or Junk It

Sell it Online

One place to sell your junk car is on Craiglist or eBay.

There are plenty of buyers searching for junked cars. Depending on the type of vehicle and the condition, buyers will purchase your junk car for refurbishing or as a source of parts. This is a great option if you have space to store the vehicle and are willing to coordinate transportation.

Sell it for Parts

You can disassemble your junk car and sell the valuable parts. This DIY project can net you several hundred dollars. All you need is a little ambition, the right tools, some know-how and storage space for parts that don’t sell right away.

Donate It

If you just want to get rid of a junker and cash for your car is not a priority, donating your vehicle is an excellent way to go. Donation facilities will usually pick the vehicle up at no charge. Don’t forget a receipt — donating your junker to a non-profit organization is tax deductible.

Sell it For Cash

There are over 9,000 salvage and junk yards nationwide, all in the business of purchasing junk cars. The majority of these operations provide a convenient, hassle-free service. Many offer free online estimates.

A reputable salvage company will not charge a fee for towing a junk car.

Why Sell to a Junkyard?

Despite certain stigmas attached to vehicle salvage operations (remember Bad, Bad, Leroy Brown?) they offer an extremely beneficial service to the economy and the environment.

Salvage lots and junk yards are in the business of recycling automobiles, a multi-billion dollar industry. Roughly fourteen million tons of steel are recycled every year in the United States. At least 25% of the steel used to assemble a new vehicle is recycled material. This equates to the manufacture of 13 million vehicles.

Before the vehicle is sent to a shredding facility it is stripped. Intact parts (hoods, bumpers, doors, seats, windows, engines and transmissions) are either reused, if they meet quality-control standards, or repurposed.

80% of a junk car is recyclable. This includes items like tires, batteries, catalytic converters, and plastics. The recycled materials are delivered to an authorized processing facility. These regulated facilities practice environmentally sound disposal techniques.

The automotive recycling industry has very high standards concerning hazardous materials in junked out cars. According to the Automotive Recyclers Association, 96% of all lead acid batteries are collected from vehicles taken to salvage lots.

Here’s an interesting fact — car batteries are the number one recycled product in the US — more than aluminum and paper.

What to Know About Your Junk Car Title

In most states, a valid title is required for a car or truck to exchange hands. Before selling your junk car to the salvage dealer it is a good idea to check your state’s salvaged auto regulations. Every state has different guidelines regarding titles, registration, and license plate.

Here are some basic procedures for title transfer standard in any state:

  • All written information and signatures must be in blue or black ink
  • If you make a mistake, strike through it with a single straight line and initial below the error (the DMV must be able to see what the error was). Scribbling over items or using white-out invalidates the title. You will have to take a trip to the DMV to apply for a duplicate.
  • The title must be signed using a signature that matches the name printed on the title; if your name changed since you purchased the vehicle, do not sign the title with your current name. Regardless of the purpose for your name change (marriage, divorce, or any other reason), you must sign the title using the name printed on the document

It’s good practice to not hand over your title to a salvage yard representative (or any other car buyer) until you have received payment.

No Title? You Have Options

If you can’t find the title to your junk car the first course of action is to replace the lost title through your local DMV. Most states have an entire section dedicated to “lost titles” on their website.

If you need the cash for your car before you will receive the replacement title some junk yards are willing to accommodate you. A valid photo ID and current registration (to prove ownership) will be needed.

If the title is not available, document the transaction using a Bill of Sale.

A Bill of Sale should have the following information:

  • Buyer and seller names
  • The date of the sale
  • A description of the vehicle – year, make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN)
  • The mileage of the vehicle at the time of the sale
  • The agreed upon price
  • You may also want to add a note that reads “title to follow”

Tips on Getting the Most Cash from a Junk Car Buyer

Here are some criteria to consider:


Although not a hundred percent, you will be able to weed out the “shady” operations based on complaints logged at the Better Business Bureau. Unethical junkyards are notorious for using bait-and-switch tactics. Successful cash-for-cars operations have websites where you can check out customer reviews.

Why waste your time with inexperience or inefficiency?

Yards with multiple locations or a nationwide network are professionals in the industry. They have the business of buying totaled or junk cars down to a science. Larger operations can usually afford to offer more cash for your car.


Check to see which junkyards offer service in your area. Some have larger service areas due to multiple locations. A larger fleet of tow trucks means you will not have to wait for days to have your clunker towed.

Legitimate salvage yards have no problem giving you an estimate before towing your car. Look for those who offer free quotes online, so you have an idea of what to expect when you start making phone calls.

Price and Payment

Operations that value customers are not shady about their pricing. Look for businesses with websites openly publishing prices paid for other junk vehicles.

The automobile recycling industry is highly competitive. Obtain several quotes to maximize the cash you get for your car. Choose a junkyard willing to pay you dollars per ton of steel for your vehicle.

And since cash-for-cars is the name of the game, make sure they pay in cash.

If a representative shows up to tow your car with a cash amount less than the original quote, do not allow them to take the vehicle, keep the title, and call another salvage yard.

Say Your Final Farewells

Once you have received a quote from the salvage yard, it’s time to finalize towing arrangements. Now there’s only one thing left to do – pat Old Betsy on the boot and say good-bye.

Gather all your belongings using this helpful checklist as a reminder.

  • License Plates (this is crucial since many states require plates be returned to the DMV)
  • Any custom or stock stereo equipment, CDs, CD player, DVD player, speakers, woofers, etc.
  • Jumper Cables, tire iron, jack and any emergency roadside items
  • Spare tire
  • Thoroughly go through your trunk and glove compartment. Retrieve items with personal information or account numbers

Closing Thoughts

Perhaps Murphy’s Law decided to pay you an undeserving visit. Maybe it’s time to get rid of dad’s “I always wanted to overhaul a car with my own hands project” (still sitting on the side of the house, of course).

Selling your junk car is either an unfortunate necessity or something you have put off for far too long. Regardless of your reason, we hope you found our Guide to Selling Junk Cars helpful.

If you recently totaled your vehicle or have a junk car sitting in your yard, consider Cash Auto Salvage for your cash for car needs.

Contact us today for a free quote.

10 Things to Do Before You Junk Your Car

junk car for cash checklist

Do you have an old or damaged car rusting away in your backyard and you don’t know what to do with it?

Take it in for repairs?

That is certainly out of the question, because it’s either too battered to be repaired or the cost of repairs is too high, perhaps even higher than the car’s present value.

What next?

About 15 million vehicles reach the end of their usable lives every year in the US, and about 13 million of these are sold off to junkyards and recycled.

Yes, junking your car is the best way to get rid of the clunker and earn some quick buck in the process.

But what does it take to junk your car?

We’re sharing everything you need to do when junking your car, so buckle up and enjoy to ride.

1. Collect Your Personal Belongings

How some of our personal belongings end up in our rides and stay there for weeks or even months is not puzzling.

Cars are our second homes.

At the end of several years of faithful service, your car could play host to a range of personal stuff, from important documents like insurance cards to pieces of jewelry.

In fact, it’s common for car owners to “misplace” something, search it everywhere else without luck, only to find it in the car’s storage compartments.

To ensure no valuable personal belonging is lost when you junk your car, comb through the trunk and other storage compartments before handing it over.

2. Remove Valuable Parts Before You Junk Your Car

Your aim is to squeeze as much money as possible from the wrecked auto.

As such, take away parts or components that can fetch some dollars when sold separately.

Focus on alternators, starter motors, entertainment systems and other high-value parts that can be sold to retailers or drivers with a similar car model, as well as those that can be taken to a manufacturer for restoration.

Check the battery and wheels, too.

If you take off the tires, replace them with beat up ones. Dealers can refuse to buy your car if it’s not in towable condition.

Potential dollars could also be hiding in the gas tank. If there’s some gasoline in there, siphon it out using a siphon pump and store it in tight containers away from heat sources, or you can use it fuel another car.

Don’t fail to remove valuable parts because you lack the mechanical know-how to tell a functional part from a dead one. Call in a friend or a local mechanic to help out.

3. Iron out the Paperwork

Although it’s possible to junk your car (after trying hard) without documents showing proof of ownership, dealers will likely knock you off.

Getting your car title in order enables you to transfer ownership to the dealer. This way, if something unforeseen happens – like if the car gets stolen from the junkyard before it’s crushed flat – no one will ask you to take part in a theft investigation.

If you can’t find your title, don’t freak out.

Head over to your state’s department of motor vehicles and get it replaced.

Rules for car titles vary from state to state, so check with your state’s DMV to get a handle on whether you need to have the car’s paperwork in order.

In some states, it’s not a requirement to have a title for vehicles for very old vehicles. For example, Vermont doesn’t title cars that are over 15 years old.

4. Remove License Plates

Perhaps you are wondering, “what do I need to remove license plates from a dead automobile that is going to be crushed anyway?”

Well, the license plates don’t stop being useful when a car retires from service.

Removing license plates from the vehicle upon transfer of ownership is a legal requirement in several states, and your DMV will likely ask for the plates when you apply to cancel the title.

5. Cancel Your Car Insurance

Canceling your junker’s insurance ensures your carry won’t have to make any recurring payments before the policy expires.

In case you had paid for full coverage in advance, you’re entitled to a refund.

Even if your coverage is almost up and you feel there is nothing to lose, it’s still important to notify your carrier. This helps to maintain a solid business relationship, and a better relationship means you could qualify for discounts or special offers in the future.

6. Shop Around for the Best Deal

No matter what shape your old jalopy is in, different dealers will offer different figures.

Although offers will often vary slightly, it’s best to shop around for the best deal before you junk your car.

Dealers will always try to acquire the car at the lowest possible price, so up your negotiation skills a notch.

Gather as much information about the car as possible, since dealers and brokers will typically want to know the extent of damage before throwing you an offer.

It also helps to have a rough estimate of the car’s value before taking offers. You can ask your mech to give a rough estimate, then call several junkyards and compare their offers.

Also, consider whether a dealer offers free towing. If they don’t, ask how much they will give without including towing charges. Sometimes delivering the car to a junkyard on your bill can get you a better deal, as long as you get your math right.

7. Ensure Your Dealer is Licensed

Several states prohibit junk car dealers from doing business without a proper license.

For your own sake, ensure your preferred dealer has an active license. You can walk or drive over to the yard and ask to see the license before you junk your car. Alternatively, if your state offers e-services for license checks, ask for the license number and verify it online.

Although it can be tempting to rush over the process once you hit an irresistible deal, working with a licensed dealer protects you from potential liabilities in the future.

If the deal turns sour somewhere along the way, especially where a dealer promises to settle part of the cash later on and fails to pay up, you may be unable to make a valid claim against the dealer.

Worse, you can be sued for improper transfer of a motor vehicle. You risk a fine or jail time when you junk your car to a shady dealer.

8. Remove Non-Metal Components (When Necessary)

While some dealers can buy your junk car as is (complete with non-metallic parts), others would prefer to buy after it has been stripped down to bare metal.

If dealers in your locality prefer stripped-down vehicles, you stand a better chance of selling off your junker when it’s stripped down.

Scrapping off the plastics, removing the seats and emptying fluids will require some expertise and special equipment, but the job must be done.

The best and quickest option is to call in a mech, though the service will cost you some money. A cheap alternative is to gather a couple of friends and join efforts to strip down the car. (It’s fun, we promise!)

9. Ensure the Weight Scale is Certified

Scrap cars are mostly sold by the ton.

This means that if a dealer is offering $200 per ton for a full car, a 2,000-pound vehicle will fetch you $200 and some loose change.

The more tons your dead vehicle weighs, the more money it will fetch.

Sounds pretty straightforward, right?

It certainly does, until you find out dealers use different weight scales. Some are faulty or tampered with, and they can give lower measurements of your car;s weight. When this happens, a couple of dollars will be knocked off the car’s value without your knowledge.

To junk your car at maximum value, avoid transacting with dealers with a crooked reputation and ensure your dealer is using a certified weight scale.

10. Consider Other Ways to Junk Your Car

Although most people junk their cars for cash, giving it away to a charity of your choice is another way to get rid of the thing.

The charity will eventually sell the car and use the proceeds to fund their charitable causes.

But why donate to charity when you can earn some quick money?

Donating is hassle-free and you can claim a great tax deduction!

So whether you junk your car for cash or donate to charity, you will reap some financial gain at the end of the road.

Before we slam on the brakes…

Keep in mind that junking your car is a nice way to get the old machine out of your property and put more money in your pocket.

However, the process can be tiring if you’re a newbie in this business or a bit held up with some other work.

Call a professional dealer who can buy your clunker at a great deal, regardless of its condition, age, model or size.