If you’ve ever tried to sell a car before, you know how difficult the process can be. It may seem even more difficult when your car is junk. Every year around 15 million vehicles in the United States reach the end of their usable lives. You may be wondering what happens to all of those unusable, junk cars.
Not sure what to do with your old car that completely failed your spring maintenance checklist? It sure has no business taking up space in your garage or parked on your lawn ruining your healthy grass. There are a few different options to help you get rid of it– maybe even make some money off of it!
Repair It to Sell It!
If your car is in decent shape but just needs a few repairs, it may be worth it to get it fixed up. Do some research on the cost of repairs and the value of your car. If the repair costs are too high and won’t raise the value of your car enough to offset the costs, don’t waste your time or money. There are other options for you.
Sell It As-Is (Whole or In Parts)
Your car may not run anymore, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have any value. There are many valuable parts in your vehicle that are worth money. Depending on where you live, there are services and companies that buy clunkers either whole or in parts. You can also give local classified sites like CraigsList a shot as well.
Many cash-for-junk companies offer instant quotes if you want to get an idea of how much it’s worth. If it’s not drivable, many also offer pick-up services that you can take advantage of.
Trade It in for Something New
One of the simplest ways to get rid of your car is to trade it into a dealership and put it towards a new vehicle. Luckily most dealerships take trade-ins. There are some steps you should take before trading it in to ensure you get the most value for it.
- Do Your Research – It’s important to know the value of your vehicle. Search for its current value and find out how much it’s being sold for. This will help you to determine a fair price to negotiate. You should also consider raising your asking price by 10 percent to help you get as much value as you can for your car.
- Make Sure You Have Your Paperwork in Order – It’s important to make sure that you have all the required paperwork to trade your car in. If you’re not sure which documents you need, reach out to your local DMV. Their website should have all the info you need.
- Clean It Up – Make sure you remove all of your personal belongings from the car. It also sets a good impression if your car is cleaned up. Vacuum it out and run it through the car wash.
Donate Your Junk Car to Charity
Giving to charity can help make you feel good while also putting out positivity into the world. Did you know that there are multiple charity programs you can donate your car to? Some of the charities are set up to help teach underprivileged people how to repair vehicles. Others dismantle the cars so that they can sell the parts for cash.
If you’re considering donating your car to a charity program it’s important to take the time to research which ones are available in your area. Make sure you find a reputable and efficient charity that has 501(c)(3) non-profit status with the IRS.
If you’re planning on using the donation as a tax write off you should also remember to grab a receipt after making your donation. Snap photos of your car before turning it over and save any receipts you have if you needed to do any repairs to donate the car.
Recycle Your Old Car
The most recycled consumer product in the United States is junk vehicles. Of the 15 million cars that reach the end of their drivable lives each year, around 13 million are recycled or sold to junkyards. And what’s even better is that seventy-five percent of a vehicle’s materials are completely recyclable and car manufacturers are working hard to try and make recycling vehicles even easier.
If you’re considering having your clunker recycled it’s important to know that you can still make some money off your old vehicle. Wrecking yards are a quick and easy option if you’re looking to get rid of your car fast but they will often give you the lowest amount for it. If you’re looking to make a bit more, research auto recycling services in your area. When choosing who you’ll recycle your old car with, make sure to do some research and find a recycling yard that complies with environmental standards.
You may be wondering how recycling your old car works. When it arrives at the recycling yard, the vehicle identification number or VIN is run through an application that will generate a list of parts on your vehicle that may be salvageable. The recycler will then compare that list to what they have on-hand. Parts that are in-demand will be removed from your vehicle, tested, and then entered into the recycler’s inventory.
What parts of your car are recyclable?
- Windshields and Windows – For a long time windshields weren’t recyclable due to the protective plastic sealant on them. Nowadays there is new technology that makes removing the glass easier. Auto glass is used to create things like fiberglass insulation, floor tiles, counters, jewelry, and so much more!
- Oil – Auto shops and collection centers recycle used oil all the time. With special techniques, it can be filtered and reused.
- Oil Filter – Each oil filter contains around one pound of steel.
- Tires – Car tires are non-degradable and take up a lot of space at the dump. Tires that are in good condition are often sold or turned into new tires. They can also be repurposed as fuel, shoes, and artificial turf.
- Battery – Your car’s battery is full of acid and harmful materials that can wreak havoc on the environment if it isn’t recycled properly.