If you have an old car starting to take up space or is just not meeting your needs anymore, it might be time to consider your options. Many old car owners decide to sell their cars for scrap and used parts rather than simply letting a car dealership offer a low-ball offer towards a newer car. But if you are looking to scrap your car, don’t think that you can simply drive it to the scrapyard to receive maximum dollar. There are a few things you should do first.

10 Things to Do Before Scrapping Your Car - yard, value, scrapping, licensed, license, junk, insurance, car, belongings

Steps to take before selling your car to the scrapyard

Before you sell your car for scrap, be sure to do these ten things.

  1. Make sure that the scrap yard or junk dealer is licensed. As you research places to bring your old car, make sure that any potential business you choose to work with is licensed. Any reputable dealer will be able to produce the license for you upon request, and many may actually have a copy of the license (or the actual license) hanging in plain sight right in the office for your viewing pleasure. The key here is that you want to ensure you only do business with a reputable and law-abiding establishment.
  2. Gather and remove your personal belongings. Once you have accepted the cash for your junker and you have left the scrap yard, the vehicle is no longer yours. Therefore, you must take the time to go through the car in detail to remove your personal effects. Your personal items include anything with your personal information on them that might be in your glove compartment or other storage space, any items in the backseat or trunk that didn’t come with the car, and anything that might have fallen between the cracks over the years that you owned the vehicle.
  3. Remove your license plates. Though you might not think this is necessary if your car is going to be crushed at the scrapyard, it is important to think again. In some states, removal of your license plates is a legal requirement tied to the transfer of ownership. Therefore, you may be asked to return the DMV plates when you apply to cancel the title.
  4. Remove parts of value. Some of the parts on your car might be worth more to other buyers than they will be to the scrap yard. Thus, after you have removed your personal effects, you should do some homework to determine what parts are worth money. Take the time to remove those items, and if you can’t do it yourself, call on an experienced mechanic that can help. Then, take those parts to the right buyer so that you can obtain top dollar. Some of the most valuable parts on your car include the alternator, starter, entertainment system, and gas tank.
  5. Remove non-metal components from the car. Some dealers will purchase your junk car as-is but others prefer vehicles that have already been stripped down to bare metal. Your best bet here is to work with a reputable mechanic that can strip off valuable plastics, remove the seats, and empty the car of any fluids. Though a mechanic will cost you some money, remember that you may be able to sell those parts for some easy cash.
  6. Get your paperwork in order. Though paperwork isn’t always required when you turn your car in at the scrap yard, you will need paperwork if you want to transfer or cancel the title for your vehicle. Your car’s title is needed in order to transfer ownership of the vehicle to a car dealership. This said, if you don’t have your title, be sure to make some phone calls to your state’s department of motor vehicles to understand what you need to do to get a duplicate title.
  7. Cancel your car insurance. Once your vehicle has been turned in for scrap and you have the paperwork from the scrap yard that your car has been relinquished, there is no need for your to maintain insurance. Therefore, be sure to cancel your car insurance as soon as possible. Don’t worry too much if you can’t do it right away as many insurance companies will provide you with a slight grace period and prorate your policy’s cancellation.
  8. Look for the best deal. Different dealerships and different scrap yards will offer different deals. Take time to look for the best deal for your particular situation. Doing your homework in advance will save you time and help ensure you get top dollar for your junker. And if you find that dealerships in your area won’t pay what you think your car is worth, consider reaching out to damagedcars.com to see if they can provide a more equitable offer.
  9. Make sure the weight scale is certified. The more your vehicle weighs, the more you will make. So, to maximize your potential earnings you need to make sure that your dealer is using a weight system that has been certified. Sad but true, there are some dealers out there that are working with faulty scales or scales that have been tampered with. This can cost you some valuable revenue. However, if you have done your homework in advance and are working with a reputable dealer, you probably won’t have anything to worry about.
  10. Look for other options. Before you decide to sell your car to a dealer or scrap yard, take some time to look for other options. If your car still operates, consider donating it to a women’s shelter or other charitable organization. Many charities will be happy to take your old vehicle and it can mean a tax deduction for you. Let your trash become someone else’s treasure.