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Cash 4 Clunkers: Everything You Need to Know!

Cash 4 Clunkers: Everything You Need to Know!

Trade-in that old vehicle for some cash with the Cash 4 Clunkers program! Not only are you able to get rid of your junk car, but you also get to help the environment while getting cash to buy a new, safer, and fuel-efficient vehicle. You could receive $1,000 or more for your vehicle in any condition in just 24 to 48 hours with this program.

Auto Repairs Are EXPENSIVE

Understanding the concept of Cash 4 Clunkers


The concept came from the Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS), a $3 billion U.S. federal scrappage program created to provide economic incentives to U.S. residents to purchase a new and more fuel-efficient vehicle in exchange for their less fuel-efficient vehicle. It aimed to not only reduce pollution but also to save the automotive industry during the Great Recession.


The program was signed into law by former President Obama in 2009, and implemented by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Car dealers give the required information to the NHTSA on behalf of qualified new car buyers. 


The CARS program gave Americans who qualified a credit of up to $4,500, depending on the vehicle bought. The processing of claims began July 24 2009 and the program ended on August 24, 2009, as the appropriated funds were already exhausted.


The program was a success in some areas but in other ways, it also was a disappointment as evidence suggests that the auto industry was actually harmed by it. It caused a brief surge in car purchases only for a short while and lowered car purchases ultimately in the long term.


Research shows that car purchases made through the program were cheaper than they would have been without the car buyback program, as people were incentivized to only spend the available cash they received for their old vehicles. What they typically would have budgeted for a new car would have been higher without that limit. The CARS or Cash 4 Clunkers program eventually came to an end last quarter of 2009 after enabling the sale of nearly 700,000 vehicles.


Science Direct, a research site that studied the program’s effect on the environment reported:  ”The program will reduce CO2 emissions by only 9–28.2 million tons based on upper and lower bounds of the estimate of the program effect on sales, implying a cost per ton ranging from $92 to $288 even after accounting for reduced criteria pollutants.”


Last year, since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many started to ask whether it might be a good idea to launch a new Cash for Clunkers program to protect the auto industry and provide help to individuals who might not have the cash to make a new car purchase.


The Cash for Clunkers for 2020 did not materialize but so did the feared negative impact on the auto industry, but there are reasons to expect a Cash for Clunkers program for 2021. The Biden administration, with its Green Energy campaign pitch, proposed to bring back the Cash for Clunkers program but this time to push consumers to purchase the more eco-friendly electric vehicles. 


The program by the Biden administration sets to focus on getting low-mileage, gas vehicles off the road and then scrapping and trading them in for electric cars. If the Cash for Clunkers program materializes as an environmental program, beneficiaries will have the option to keep their cars or sell them to the government and then make the switch to electric or hybrid cars. It was set to fast-track the country’s transition to green energy.


Cash 4 Clunkers in California


The federal government wasn’t the only government that launched a Cash 4 Clunkers program. California is one fortunate state that launched an independent program in 2020 in response to the CoronaVirus Pandemic and it continues up to this day. 


Proponents saw that a 2020 Cash 4 Clunkers program was an important way to stimulate the automotive industry. MotorTrend reported a decline in car sales, which had inevitably created flashbacks to 2008 and 2009 when the financial crisis also resulted in a tumultuous drop in auto sales and ravaged automaker bottom lines.


California’s Bureau of Automotive Repair’s (BAR)’s Consumer Assistance Program (CAP) offers eligible California residents optional assistance with repairs and/or vehicle retirement options to aid California’s air quality improvement. So this program’s goal is not only for economic purposes but also for vehicle emissions reduction. 


The state believes it can be done by lowering the number of registered vehicles on California roads. Qualified California residents get to sell their old car to the state and get between $1,000 and $1,500. But like any state-sponsored programs there are also laws and restrictions to be followed and for the Consumer Assistance Program in California, here are the following:


  1. Applicant must be a resident of California
  2. The vehicle must have failed the smog test. Again the program was made for emission reduction so newer vehicles that smog test is not eligible.
  3. No vehicle missing parts. Your car must be completely whole.
  4. The car must be driveable and have to start on its own power. Towing, pushing, pulling is not allowed. You have to drive your own car to the junkyard. 


Car Buy Back Program incentive


If you and your vehicle are eligible for the program, you can get cash for your scrap car. But by how much depends on your income level. The flat rate is $1,000. But if your income level is below the threshold, 225 percent of the poverty level you could get $1,500. 


Take note that the program’s availability of funds each fiscal year is July 1st – June 30th. The time required to process your vehicle retirement incentive request until you receive payment is also estimated to be approximately 6-8 weeks upon receipt of application.


Failed to meet the CAP strict criteria? Cash 4 Clunkers is the answer for you..


If you need cash fast for an emergency or simply don’t have that sort of time to wait 6-8 weeks as the Consumer Assistance Program requires, there are alternative programs available that could only take approximately 48-72 hours for you to get paid, and that is where the private Cash 4 Clunkers option comes in. 


The state government-sponsored CAP may have many restrictions as seen on their strict criteria but with the Cash 4 Clunkers program, there is second to none. They accept vehicles in any make, model, year, or condition they may be in, and again they pay fast. They may also offer same day pick up which is very convenient for you as a seller.


How the 2021 Cash 4 Clunkers Work


Cash 4 Clunkers, a private vehicle buying service, is designed to connect sellers with local car buyers near them who will be willing to collect the old or junk vehicle and pay top dollar cash on the spot! Getting rid of that old vehicle has never been this simple and fast. 


It’s a really easy process. All you will need to do is call Cash 4 Clunkers or fill out an anonymous form. Cash 4 Clunkers has representatives throughout the United States, so you will certainly come across contact details of a dealership or representative where you live, not just in California. You will then be asked a few easy and quick questions so they can access how much you deserve to be paid. 


The Cash 4 Clunkers representatives are well equipped with knowledge about buying a junk car, so you can be confident about getting a lucrative deal. Part of their skill of course is being able to appraise the junk car with expertise.


The questions that will be asked include: 


  • Your full name, phone number, email address, City & State where you live
  • The year your car was manufactured
  • The make and model
  • The odometer mileage
  • The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)


Upon filling up the form and answering all questions, you will be able to get an estimate in a few seconds. Take note that it is a no-obligation quote, meaning that you don’t have to accept it in case you are unhappy with the number. 


Once you are settled with the amount and are more than happy with their service they will take care of all the pick-up arrangements and again it can be within 48-72 hours and they pay you cash on the spot as soon as they pick up your vehicle. Expect no added fees and no hassles at all. No added fees also mean towing is free of charge.


No Title.. No Problem.. 


Did you misplace your car title or is it simply impossible to secure one? You also do not have to worry about that as Cash 4 Clunkers has a national vehicle database that enables them to verify ownership of the vehicle. It will not only save you from the headache but also save you the time and the cost of securing new ownership paperwork.


If you have unwanted vehicle/s crowding your garage, do not have time or the money to make vehicle repairs, concerned with failing emission tests, and ready to transform that junk car into fast cash, the Cash 4 Clunkers program might very well be the best option for you.