How Much do Junkyards Pay for Cars?

Junkyards are the final resting place of a vehicle. Some cars in the graveyard of automobiles are old, and some lived a short life. Whether new or old, they were all purchased by the salvage yard. Junkyards will pay for cars to use as scrap vehicles or crush for scrap metal. If you are considering taking your vehicle to a scrapyard, you may be wondering how much do junkyards pay for cars?

There are many factors that junkyards use when making an offer to buy junk cars. The condition of your vehicle, how much it weighs, your location, and if it is in demand are all things that the junkyard will look at when making you an offer for your junk vehicle.

How much can I get for my junk car?

If your vehicle has completely kicked the bucket or is puttering along, you may be considering selling it to the junkyard. It may be your last option with the clunker and can get you some fast cash for a car you can’t sell or trade to a dealership. The average price dished out for cars at a junkyard is between $100-$500.

Average payout for junk cars at junkyard

A running car is going to generate a little more cash than a car that may be missing some key parts or components. This is because a running car may have some scrap part value before the scrap yard crushes it for its scrap metal. A non-running vehicle is often weighed and the current scrap metal prices paid.

    For example, a 1989 Toyota Celica with no chance of running and missing some parts, will get you $50-$125 dollars. This includes body damage and even missing a wheel and tire. The scrapyard is going to crush this vehicle.

    On the other hand, a 2010 Ford F-150 can get you almost $1000 if it is running but not a great car for daily driving. This is because some of the parts can be salvaged, which will help generate profit from the vehicle. Also, it weighs more than the Toyota, which means it will get more in scrap metal pricing when it is parted out.

Why do junkyards pay so low?

    When you are given your original offer, you may wonder why it is so low? For one, junkyards don’t base it on the market value of the vehicle. Because it is no longer going to transport people, a car's scrap value can be as low as 20% of the Blue Book value of a used car in good condition.

Scrap value is only a fraction of Blue Book value

    If you have a running vehicle, they take into consideration how much they can make by reselling the parts from your car. If they are rare car parts and in high demand, you may get a better offer. If it is an old car they already have hundreds of parts for, it will be a pretty low price.

   Scrapyards buy non-running vehicles for the price of their metal. This means they will weigh the car, and pay you based on the percentage of metal in your car. They base this on the make and model of the car, and averages of other vehicles similar to yours.

Salvage yards also have costs of business to consider when they offer to buy your junker. If you don’t bring the vehicle to them, they will have to pick it up for you. Apart from towing costs, they also have storage and inventory costs, and the labor costs for dismantling this vehicle. Overall, a junkyard is a business and must take into consideration these business costs they incur when creating your offer!

Some junkyards always price low, especially if they know they are the only scrapyard around and can get away with lowball offers and bait and switch tactics. In this case, it is best to shop around for a company that is willing to travel to pick up your vehicle. You may get a lower price than if you were near a good junkyard, but it is often better than selling to an untrustworthy auto salvage yard.

How is the value of my vehicle determined?

    Junkyards will use a salvage value calculator to determine the value of your car. This will take the year, make, and model of the vehicle and cross-reference with the thousands of other cars just like yours. Then they will determine the condition of the vehicle. Depending on the junkyard, it may want pictures or to see the car in person before making your final offer. It will ask about the parts, condition of the engine and transmission, mileage on the odometer, body condition, and the condition of the interior. All of this is used to get your best offer based on an analysis by the junkyard.

How can you get the best offer for your vehicle?

    The last thing you want when taking your vehicle to be scrapped is a completely low and unfair offer. After considering all of the work and business costs that go into scrapping one vehicle, you know not to expect a life-changing amount of money. But, you still don’t want to be taken advantage of by the scrap yard.

    One way to get the most out of your scrap vehicle is by calling around to different junkyards and getting a quote. You can often do this on a scrapyard's website or over the phone. If there are only a few in your area, you may find the prices to be very close.

    The second thing to consider is to find a local junkyard as close to you as possible. Whether you are hauling the car yourself or the salvage yard is picking it up, the fewer miles it has to travel the better. Some scrapyards will give you a scrap value based on how many miles they have to travel to pick it up.

    You can also use CarScrappers to scrap your vehicle. CarScrappers is the best low stress, hassle-free way to scrap your vehicle for a great offer. We can get you an instant offer in less than two minutes and have your vehicle picked up in only a couple of days!

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