sell a car for scrap

How to Sell a Car for Scrap: A Complete Guide

How many registered vehicles do you think there are in the United States?


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A whopping 46,117,000 registrations that’s what!

The United Kingdom comes close too, with 76% of households having vehicle access in 2014. In fact, 32% of them had more than one car!

All these can then make anyone wonder where old vehicles go, or at least where their owners stow them away.

As someone who’s driven for quite some time now, it’s likely you have a junk car in your garage. The question is, why keep it if you can sell a car for scrap?

That’s right. You can make money out of that clunker only taking up precious space at home.

We’ll show you exactly how to do that, so keep reading!

Why Sell a Car for Scrap in the First Place?

For starters, because selling a car for scrap means getting back all that space it takes up. Even if your clunker is small and light, it still eats up about 1.9 meters (width) by 3.7 meters (length) of space. That’s a lot of room for something you don’t even use anymore.

Have it scrapped, and you’re looking at an area you can transform into something more useful, say a work or project space in your garage.

There’s also the fact that your banger only serves as a collection bin for dust and debris. The longer it sits there, the more unwanted elements it accumulates (hello snakes and rodents). All these can pose health and safety dangers to your family, so you’d want to get rid of it as soon as you can.

These two should be enough reason for you to scrap that old thing. But if you need more incentive, then know that recycling its parts (or the whole car) can make you a few hundred dollars (or pounds, depending on where you live) richer.

To top it all off, having a junk vehicle recycled the right way means also give you the chance to contribute to the green revolution. To put things in perspective, know that properly-recycled vehicles in the U.S. produce as many as 25 million tons of usable materials every year.

With up to 95% of a car’s materials good for recycling, that’s a huge burden lifted off of the environment.

Unless you want to restore your car, you should start planning your scrapping project!

Car Scrapping Preparation

Say you’ve already done all the auto repair hacks you can and even had a pro mechanic check your car out. You’ve determined that it’s already dead, so it’s time to let go.

Before you have it scrapped though, you want to look for documentation that the car is under your name. That’s whether you’re in the US or the UK. You can read more here about the UK vehicle scrapping process.

Sell Whole or By Part?

Next, decide whether you want to sell it whole, as is, or part by part.

Selling its parts one by one means more profits, but also keep in mind that this takes more time. After all, you’d have to take your junker apart to get access to these parts.

To give you some idea though, the most valuable (and easiest to sell) parts include the engine, transmission, seats, and airbags. You’ll also make some dough on the suspensions parts, electrical wiring, vehicle chassis, and plastic reservoirs.

If you want to get rid of your clunker the fastest way, then consider selling it as is. Preparations are still in order, but only such as ensuring you empty your petrol tank and that you don’t have anything valuable left in it.

If you have the technical know-how, you may also want to retrieve technology or gadgets, like a stereo system and the works. You may still want to use this for your next ride.

Who to Sell It To?

This depends on whether you plan to sell the entire car or by part.

If you want to scrap it without taking it apart, start Googling “junkyards near me” or “car scrappers near me”. The search engine will provide you with a list of scrapping services ready to get your clunker off your hands.

Be sure you choose a scrapper with the proper license to recycle junk vehicles though. There are laws surrounding the junk car recycling process, the aim of which is to reduce environmental impact and safety hazards.

If your plans involve selling individual car components, junkyards can also help. You may also consider checking out buy and sell websites dealing with car parts. Again, doing so may make you more money, but you should also prepare yourself to wait longer before you can sell them all.

Comparison is Key to Getting the Best Deal

With so many car scrapping services out there, it won’t take you long to find several near your location. This doesn’t mean you should settle for the first one though.

Treat this like how you’d buy a car on Craigslist: With care and attention, and more importantly, comparing sellers.

Start by looking up car scrapping businesses online. Check their locations (this matters, since it also influences how much you’ll earn after collection or delivery fees). Make a list of at least three scrappers that meet your requirements.

After looking at their business history and ensuring they’re legit, ask for a quote. Reputable automotive recyclers offer estimates based on car registration details and location. The best scrappers even offer a guaranteed quote!

A guarantee gives you more peace of mind, knowing you won’t deal with a sudden low-ball offer.

Sell Your Junk Car Now

When you sell a car for scrap, consider the money you’ll make as an added incentive. Your primary goal should be to reduce the health and safety hazards (think of all the dust and rust it accumulates) at home.

Of course, there’s also the pride you’ll feel in knowing that you disposed of that old thing the eco-friendly way.

Need more automotive help? Whether it’s for repairs or buying, we have you covered! So, feel free to check our blog now!