Lots of people like to buy quality cars & trucks and drive them for a long time. Settling into a favorite vehicle and taking care of it for many years is not only prudent but highly gratifying for many drivers. Modern-day vehicles, when properly serviced, run reliably for hundreds of thousands of miles and keep going strong for 10, 15 or even 20 years. But at some point, it’s time to say goodbye to that old “friend” whose cabin you’ve ridden in for countless hours.
Maybe it’s time to replace an older vehicle or maybe you have an extra car or truck that you just don’t need anymore. Whenever it’s time to dispose of a damaged or older vehicle, a decision needs to be made on the best way to sell or get rid of that old car. Your ultimate decision will be based on your priorities, whether they be economic, convenience, environmental or some combination.
Is it all about the money?
Assuming you want to make the best economic choice, it’s really all about the value that’s left in all or parts of the vehicle as determined by a large and dynamic automotive aftermarket. In the simplest of terms, it comes down to a combination of age, mileage and vehicle history.
Even if your older vehicle still runs great and has many working parts, it may not be worth much if anything in the used or recycled auto parts market. Therefore, if you want to get the most money for your older and high-mileage vehicles, a firmly negotiated private sale is probably your best bet.
The Used Auto Parts Market
There’s a big difference between a “scrap yard” or “auto salvage yard” and a recycled auto parts supplier like Bow Auto Parts. We tend to focus on the value of the drivetrain based mostly on wear & tear as measured in mileage. As we guarantee every part we sell, we can only accept undamaged parts from low mileage cars and trucks. There are a couple of situations in which it makes sense to sell your vehicle to us, but we’ll focus first on some other ways to get rid of your older vehicle which may offer a good option for your situation.
Let’s look at the most common ways to dispose of your unwanted vehicle:
- Dealer trade in – most car dealers will make an offer on just about any car you are still driving toward the purchase of a new car. The offer will obviously be well below “book value” but you have the convenience of the dealer handling any hassles involved in selling or disposing of the car.
- Private sale; Craig’s List, etc. – For older cars that still have “plenty of life” in them, a private sale can net you the most cash as you can ask for and often get what the market will bear for your unique vehicle.
- Sell to an auto salvage or metal scrap yard – In many cases this is as simple as driving in with your title and leaving with a modest handful of cash.
- Donate to charity – Some of the larger charities today are offering to pick up your unwanted vehicle right from your property. They liquidate the vehicle and put the funds to good use!
- Sell to Bow Auto Parts or another auto parts recycler if… 1) If you have a low mileage vehicle that got “totaled” in an accident and it, unfortunately, wasn’t covered by insurance. 2) Your low mileage vehicle won’t pass inspection because of rust or some other issue that doesn’t affect the drivetrain components.
It pays to make the wisest choices in how we dispose of our vehicles. Thankfully, there are enough options out there for everyone. It’s also nice knowing that each option will either continue the life of our old car or else recycle what’s left of it.