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How Much Will the Junkyard Pay for My Car?

Selling a Car That Needs Repairs

When it comes to selling a car, many people consider taking it to a junkyard as a last resort. However, selling a car to a junkyard can actually be a quick and easy way to get rid of an old or damaged vehicle. If you're wondering how much a junkyard will pay for your car, there are several factors to consider.

Auto Repairs Are EXPENSIVE


First, it's important to understand that junkyards typically don't pay much for vehicles. The goal of a junkyard is to make a profit by selling usable parts from the cars they acquire. They may also sell the metal from the car as scrap, but this is typically not the primary source of revenue. This means that they are not willing to pay top dollar for a car, as they need to make a profit on the parts they sell.

The value of a car at a junkyard is largely based on the weight of the vehicle and the price of scrap metal. Junkyards often use a scale to weigh the car and determine how much they will pay for it. The price of scrap metal can vary depending on market conditions, but it is typically quite low. For example, as of 2021, the average price of scrap steel was around $150 per ton. This means that a car that weighs 2 tons would be worth around $300 in scrap value. However, this is just the value of the metal and does not take into account the value of any usable parts that may be sold.

Another factor that can affect the value of a car at a junkyard is the condition of the vehicle. A car that is in good condition and has valuable parts, such as a newer engine or transmission, may be worth more to a junkyard than a car that is severely damaged or has very little value in terms of usable parts. Additionally, some junkyards specialize in certain types of vehicles, such as luxury cars or classic cars, and may be willing to pay more for these types of vehicles.

It's also worth considering the location of the junkyard when determining how much they will pay for your car. Junkyards in urban areas may be willing to pay more for a car due to the higher demand for parts in these areas. On the other hand, junkyards in rural areas may not be able to offer as much due to the lower demand for parts.


One way to get a sense of how much a junkyard may be willing to pay for your car is to get a quote from a few different junkyards in your area. Many junkyards have online quote forms that allow you to enter information about your car and receive an estimated price. Keep in mind that these quotes are typically just estimates and the actual price may be different once the junkyard assesses the car in person.

It's also worth considering alternative options for selling your car, such as selling it privately or trading it in at a dealership. While these options may not be as quick or convenient as selling to a junkyard, they may result in a higher payout.

If you do decide to sell your car to a junkyard, it's important to keep in mind that the price you receive may be lower than you were expecting. This is due to the low value of scrap metal and the fact that junkyards are in the business of making a profit, not giving away free cars. However, if you're looking to get rid of an old or damaged car and don't have the time or resources to sell it privately, a junkyard can be a convenient option.

In summary, the amount a junkyard will pay for your car will depend on several factors, including the weight of the car, the price of scrap metal, the condition of the vehicle, the location of the junkyard, and the demand for parts in the area. While junkyards typically don't pay much for cars, they can be a quick and convenient option for getting rid of an old or damaged vehicle. If you're looking to get the most money for your car, it may be worth considering alternative options such as selling it privately or trading it in at a dealership.

Before selling your car to a junkyard, it's a good idea to do some research and get quotes from multiple junkyards in your area to get a sense of the market value. Keep in mind that these quotes are just estimates and the actual price may be different once the junkyard assesses the car in person.

It's also important to make sure you have all necessary documents in order before selling your car to a junkyard. This may include the title to the car, as well as any other relevant documentation such as a bill of sale or proof of ownership. Make sure to transfer the title to the junkyard and complete any necessary paperwork before the car is removed from your possession.

Selling a car to a junkyard can be a quick and easy way to get rid of an old or damaged vehicle, but it's important to understand that the payout may not be as high as you were hoping for. By doing your research and considering all of your options, you can make the best decision for you and get the most money for your car.

One thing to keep in mind when selling your car to a junkyard is that you will likely not receive the full value of your car. As mentioned earlier, junkyards are in the business of making a profit by selling usable parts from the cars they acquire, and they may also sell the metal from the car as scrap. This means that they are not willing to pay top dollar for a car, as they need to make a profit on the parts they sell.

However, there are still ways to maximize the value of your car when selling it to a junkyard. Here are a few tips to consider:

  1. Remove any valuable parts or accessories: If your car has any valuable parts or accessories, such as a newer engine or aftermarket wheels, you may be able to sell these separately and potentially make more money.
  2. Consider selling to a specialty junkyard: Some junkyards specialize in certain types of vehicles, such as luxury cars or classic cars. If your car falls into one of these categories, you may be able to get a higher payout by selling to a specialty junkyard.
  3. Sell during peak demand: The demand for certain types of parts can vary throughout the year. For example, demand for snow tires may be higher in the winter months. If you can sell your car during a time when there is high demand for certain parts, you may be able to get a higher payout.
  4. Don't forget about the value of the metal: While the value of scrap metal is typically quite low, it can still add up if you have a large or heavy vehicle. Make sure to consider the value of the metal when negotiating with a junkyard.
  5. Shop around: It's a good idea to get quotes from multiple junkyards in your area to get a sense of the market value for your car. Don't be afraid to negotiate and try to get the best price possible.

By following these tips, you may be able to maximize the value of your car when selling it to a junkyard. However, it's important to keep in mind that you will likely not receive the full value of your car due to the low value of scrap metal and the need for junkyards to make a profit.

In conclusion, selling your car to a junkyard can be a quick and easy way to get rid of an old or damaged vehicle. However, it's important to understand that the payout may not be as high as you were hoping for due to the low value of scrap metal and the need for junkyards to make a profit. By doing your research, considering all of your options, and following the tips outlined above, you can maximize the value of your car when selling it to a junkyard.

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