How to Get Rid of a Junk Car

By M. Wade

  • Overview

    If your car is no longer safe to drive due to damage or neglect, or you have been storing an old car that needs major restoration work, there are people who can help you get rid of the junk car. For example, salvage companies acquire junk cars in order to sell the parts, while car enthusiasts and restoration garages purchase junk cars to restore and sell them. Before getting rid of your junk car, learn how to estimate its value and become familiar with how junk cars are sold or given away.
    How to Get Rid of a Junk Car
    How to Get Rid of a Junk Car
    • Step 1

      Estimate the value of your junk car. Using a car valuation guide--either Kelley Blue Book or NADA Guide--determine the value of your junk car. If your car is less than 20 years old, you can determine its value using the free online versions of these guides (see Resources). To get the most accurate estimate of your car's value using these guides, fully investigate the interior, exterior and mechanical condition of the car, and accurately characterize the quality and condition of the car. With this estimate, you will be able to effectively bargain with potential buyers and gauge whether or not you are receiving a fair amount of money for your junk car.
    • Step 2

      Sell to an auto restoration garage or junk car company. Research local auto restoration garages and other junk car companies in your area. Many of these companies offer free towing and cash payment for your car. Any company that offers cash for your junk car without requiring you to provide the car's title should be avoided.


    • Step 3

      Sell to a car enthusiast. If you are unsatisfied with the amount of restoration garages and junk car companies offer you for your junk car, especially if you own a heavily sought-after classic vehicle, advertise your car to local car enthusiasts. Posting print ads in local periodicals and posting ads on websites such as craigslist.org will help you reach a large audience of potential buyers. When creating your ad, clearly disclose that the car is a junk car and remember to include any special details about your junk car, such as customized components and rare accessories.
    • Step 4

      Donate the junk car to a charitable organization. If you prefer not to sell, but wish to gain some sort of financial benefit from getting rid of your junk car, you can donate it to a charity and write off the car's value as a tax deduction. Several well-known charities accept vehicles as donations, although some may not be able to offer free towing. Before donating, contact the charity to determine its process for accepting vehicle donations. Once you have donated the car, be sure to get a receipt or other form of documentation that you can use when preparing your taxes (see Resources below).
    • Step 5

      Arrange free towing with a salvage company. If your junk car is in such poor condition that restoration garages and other car enthusiasts will not be interested in purchasing it, contact a salvage company to arrange for a tow. Many of these companies will do this for free and will store your junk car in their junkyard to sell its parts.
    • Skill: Easy
    • Ingredients:
    • Car title
    • Tip: Don't forget to network with friends to see if anyone they know might be interested in purchasing or otherwise helping you get rid of your junk car.

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