Selling Broken Down Cars vs Selling Car Parts

If your car has seen better days, you’ll want to make sure to dispose of it properly. Fortunately, even cars that no longer run still have some value left in them. When disposing of your car, you can choose to either sell its individual parts or sell the entire car. Figuring out which option is best depends on a few factors that you’ll want to consider before you begin the process.

Condition of Car

One factor determining how you should dispose of your car is its overall condition. If your car is rusty and damaged, pulling it apart to try and salvage individual parts could be difficult and even dangerous. Plus, trying to get into a car like this could make a mess on your property that will take you extra time to clean up. If, however, your car is in decent condition and its only problems are mechanical, then taking it apart may be a viable option. The opposite of this is also the case. If you have a car that has a rusty exterior and doesn’t look valuable or like it would run very well but has a rather new interior work such as a new brake system, then selling the parts may result in a higher return. For example, if your car has a new brake system and a new transmission but it doesn’t look like a functioning car, even if it is functioning, it would be difficult to find someone willing to pay for the car at the cost of the transmission alone. For that reason, in this case, selling the brake system and transmission separate from the body of the car will likely get you a higher return.

Time Required

One major differentiator between selling your entire car and its individual parts is the time required for both tasks. If you choose to sell individual parts, you’ll have to take time to remove the parts from your car, list them for sale, and then ship the parts to buyers. In most cases, you’d either need to go to a shop that will handle that for you, unless you are well versed in taking apart cars and how to organize the parts to ensure they are sold with everything they need to be installed. If you are well versed in taking apart cars, then the time may be worth going through and removing all of the parts that are functioning fully or need minor repairs. 

If you choose to take cash for cars, on the other hand, the entire process will only take a few minutes, allowing you to move on to other tasks. Vegas Cash for Cars, for example, is a company that will come to wherever your car is and provides you cash on the spot. Not only do most companies come to you by appointment that you set, they typically also bring all the paperwork needed to transfer the deed so all you have to do is sign on the dotted line and they tow it away. This should be considered when it comes to the value of your time. Especially if you don’t have experience with car mechanics.

Amount Paid

In many cases, you’ll likely make more money when selling individual parts than you will if you try to sell the entire car. However, many variables go into determining the amount of money you’ll receive. If you plan to ship the individual parts, you’ll need to factor in the cost of postage and shipping supplies. As mentioned earlier, you also need to consider the fact that your time has value. If you spend too much time on this project, any extra money you receive will quickly be negated by the time cost involved. When considering the value of each piece of the vehicle, you can also call around to different part shops to see what parts they are currently interested in acquiring as well as the condition needed to get those parts. For example, you may be comparing selling your car that has a broken transmission and thus doesn’t run and would be hard to sell for over a couple of hundred dollars. However, if your exterior is in perfect condition, you may be able to sell your bumper and doors for a couple of hundred dollars alone. Not to mention selling the working engine, brake system, leather seats, and radio system on top of that. 


One wild card that could impact how you dispose of your car is the collectibility of the vehicle. If you have an older car that’s hard to find, the price of the parts may be higher than if you have a newer car that’s not as rare. Of course, the collectibility of your car could also make it more valuable as a single unit, so it’s still important to weigh your options no matter what kind of car you need to get rid of. Additionally, collectibility also requires someone who is looking for your car at the time you are selling it. For this reason, you may be holding onto the car for a long time and the space it takes up can weigh on you. Consider how quickly you want to sell your car and if you’re willing to sit on it until you get a good deal.

Don’t Let It Sit

Above all, don’t let your car sit on your property any longer than it has to. The longer your car sits and takes on rust, the lower its value will be when you try to sell it. With so many good options for disposing of your vehicle, there’s no reason not to act today.

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