How to Sell Your Junk Car for Cash for Top Dollar

How to Sell Your Junk Car for Cash for Top Dollar


junk car

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Did you know that every year, the U.S. automotive recycling industry earns $25 billion?

That’s right!

After all, almost everything in today’s automobiles — up to 86%, in fact — are reusable or recyclable. From metals like steel, aluminum, and iron to glass and plastic, there’s a long list of recyclables in cars.

That should be enough reason for you to sell your junk car ASAP. Whether it’s a “total wreck” or it’s an “end-of-life” vehicle, it still has value. Depending on the type and condition, your clunker can be worth a few hundred to a couple of thousand dollars.

The important thing is, no matter which value range your car falls in, you’d want to get top-dollar for it. And that’s exactly what we’ll share with you in this post. Keep reading so you can learn the tricks of junking your car and getting the best value for it!

Decide Whether to Sell Your Junk Car “As Is” or Piece-by-Piece

There are two basic methods to junk cars for cash: junk the entire thing or sell it off part-by-part. Let’s take a closer look at each option:

Why Sell the Entire Hunk of Junk

Have you seen those ads that say “We buy junk cars!”? These are businesses that offer cold, hard cash for junk cars, with many of them buying all makes and models. They’re a good option if you want to get rid of your junk car fast and with the least amount of effort from you.

If you’d rather not get down on all fours or if you don’t have time to part out your car, consider selling it as is. You might make less than if you part out your car, but this is the quickest (and least messy) way to sell your clunker.

Why Go With the Piece-by-Piece Method

Do you have an older clunker and some of its original factory parts are still working? Then you might find a buyer who buys junk cars for their brand-, make-, year-, or trim-specific parts.

An example is a car-rebuilding hobbyist who needs a specific original factory part. Keep in mind that it’s now very difficult to score OEM parts for older cars. If you’re lucky, and you find such a buyer, then you might get top dollar for that part alone.

You can then sell the rest of the vehicle, like leftover metal, to a scrapyard or an auto salvage yard.

This method takes longer though, and you’d need to at least have basic tools to disassemble your car. If you don’t mind getting greasy and you’re a DIY natural, this may be your better option.

Determine the Value of Your Junk Car (and Its Parts)

Whether you decide to sell the vehicle as is or part by part, make sure you have an idea of its value! Kelly Blue Book’s car valuing tool can give you an idea of its trade-in and private buyer values. Be sure to get an estimate from this tool before you sell your car (or anything off of it).

This way, you can lower your odds of either underpricing or overpricing your ride. Since you’ll have an idea how much your clunker is worth, you’ll know if a buyer is offering top-dollar for it.

Knowing the value helps you deter scams that target online car sellers. From “I don’t have to see your car” to “I’m abroad but can wire you money” scams, there are quite a few schemes to look out for.

The more you know about your junk car, the lower your risk of becoming a victim. So, do your research and make sure you know how much your hunk of junk’s “top-dollar” worth is!

Consider Selling More Valuable Parts or Upgrades to Private Buyers

Even if you’ll sell a junk car to a cash-for-cars business, you might want to sell electronics to private buyers. If these devices are still in good condition, you can rake in more cash from them through a private sale.

These accessories include entertainment or radio systems, dash cams, and GPS trackers. Bluetooth gadgets, jump starters, and Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems are also valuable. All these electronics are quite easy to dismantle, so they might be worth the extra time.

If you have custom or upgraded tires, check if there’s still a good amount of tread left in them. You can still use these in another car or you can sell them for a higher price. The same goes for custom rims, especially those made of valuable metal like aluminum.

Partner Up with a Local Junk Car Buyer

If you’re going to sell to junk shops, auto salvage yards, or cash for cars business, it’s best to stick to a local buyer. Particularly one that will pick up your junker for free. This way, you can get the most bang for your banger without paying extra costs.

Keep in mind that for five-mile tow service alone, you’re already looking at a cost of $35 to $125. If you live within 40 miles of the facility’s vicinity, towing services can cost you $125 to $275.

Sell Your Junker to the Highest Bidder Now

There you have it, the ultimate guide once you decide it’s time to sell your junk car. As long as you keep these tips in mind, you have higher chances of getting the best bid for your clunker.

So, what are you waiting for? Get that hunk of junk out of your garage or yard and earn some money in the process!

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