How Much Do Scrap Yards Pay for Used Cars that Still Run?

How Much Do Scrap Yards Pay For Used Cars That Still Run?

When selling a used vehicle for scrap at a junkyard, scrap car buyers take a lot of issues into consideration when determining its estimated price. How do scrap car removal companies establish a price for used cars? What’s the difference when pricing running old vehicles compared to scrapping cars? How would a running auto be priced?

It would depend on a variety of factors, mostly relying on the vehicle’s value and overall condition. While some offers would normally cost less than half of the market value, those mainly pertain to end-of-life automobiles. Running vehicles will most likely get you more cash, as they tend to have more valuable parts that junkers can profit from.

How do scrap car removal companies base their pricing on used vehicles?

In most cases, companies use various institutions such as the Canada Black Book and the Kelley Blue Book to determine the current market value of vehicles and then calculate it accordingly to industry standards. Depending on the scrap car removal company you’re dealing with, junk cars are sometimes worth 20 % to 40% of the current market value. Cars that are turned in are also cross-checked to determine an accurate market price.

Scrap car buyers also look for the following when determining the price of a used vehicle:

  • The car’s make, model, and year: This information is important when pricing a used car because junkers determine what kinds of parts will be available for salvage, especially for functioning vehicles. The more pristine car parts and accessories are available, the more your used vehicle will be worth.
  • Vehicle weight: A car’s weight affects its price as well, as junkers can determine the amount of metal that they can salvage. Running vehicles would more than likely cost more than scrap cars because they weigh more due to the amount of metal left in the car.
  • The current value of scrap metal: Another factor that would significantly affect the price of a used vehicle is the recent value and demand for scrap metal. It’s better to do your own research as well as to have a more favorable negotiation with the scrap car buyer.

How are cars that run priced at a scrap yard?

Scrap car buyers determine the price of running vehicles in the same way mentioned above, but they also adjust the price according to the useful parts and materials they might find on your car.

Some parts that scrap car buyers look for in a running vehicle include the following:

Running engine:

Your car’s engine is one of the most important parts a junker looks for in a vehicle. Moreover, if it’s from a newer model and is under 150,000 km, you can expect or negotiate a better offer from your buyer.


Aluminum wheels, depending on their condition, could be of use for scrap yards and so they inspect those on your vehicle as well. They are either resold or salvaged by the scrap yard.


All kinds of car lights—headlights and taillights—are mostly in demand on the market. Obviously, junkers take advantage of used vehicles’ remaining lights and resell them.


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    What’s the difference between the price of running cars compared to scrapping them?

    Junkers oftentimes sell functioning or running cars for higher prices than scrap cars, as they are oftentimes still equipped with valuable parts and materials that junkers salvage or re-sell for additional revenue. Scrap cars, on the other hand, are oftentimes only based on their weight and the amount of scrap metal left available on the vehicle.

    Scrap cars, for the most part, are offered with a starting industry average price of $300 to $1,000. For running vehicles, you can expect a higher offer, but it would still depend on the overall condition of the vehicle and the available parts and materials. If you’re looking for a fair and accurate estimation of your vehicle that you want to take to a scrap yard, fill out our online quotation form and reach out to us at or (647)-957-8305, and we’ll offer top dollar for your scrap car—or running auto. We look forward to doing business with you!

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