Last Updated on February 14, 2023 by Bernard Juchli
Do you have a car that no longer runs? It can be tempting to let it sit and gather dust. But thinking outside the box, there are many practical and creative ways to dispose of and repurpose an old car that can benefit you in terms of saving the environment and your finances. I will show you some things to do with an old car that doesn’t run that will benefit you.
From options of recycling and donating to upcycling and repurposing for household use, there are many things to do with an old car that doesn’t run, whether the vehicle is a truck, a hatchback, sedan, SUV, minivan, etc.
So whether you’re looking to clear up space in your garage, help out a charitable cause, or get creative with DIY projects, there are plenty of options for making the most of an old, non-functioning car. Please do not allow your car to sit there and attract roaches and snakes when I have ideas of things to do with an old car that does not run.
What to Do with Old Car that is Difficult to Repair
Are you tired of the rusty car in your garage or neighbourhood?
This section contains ideas that convert a junk car not worth fixing into something valuable.
Below are the things to do with an old car:
1. Recycle the Car Personally
One of the things to do with an old car is to recycle it. Recycling junk cars may include personal/domestic use, such as converting the old vehicle into furniture for home use.
The parts to consider should be the tires, framework, and car seats. You may paint the tires and convert them into valuable domestic furniture. Avoid making worn-out tires into playthings for homes with children and pets; they may get hurt by the protruding wires.
You may convert the following parts:
- Old car seats
Either you make them into one of the seats a home or recycle them away from home for money.
- Old car battery
If you are not skilled at handling car batteries, hand them over to an auto shop or pawn shop in exchange for cash, it could be cash or non-cash, and you could earn up to $30 for the battery.
2. Rebuild, Rebrand and Sell
This is also one of the things to do with an old car. If the old car is not entirely dead, you may rebuild, rebrand, and sell it. First, you will take the vehicle to the mechanic for repairs and tow it to the DMV for inspection. If it passes the inspection test, you will be given a certificate which you will submit to the titling agency of your state to receive a new title for the old car.
You may read my article on getting rid of a salvage title for detailed procedures. After receiving a new title, obtain insurance for the car, even without a license and put it up for sale. Of course, you will sell the vehicle for the value of a helpful car.
Meanwhile, after rebranding the old car, it will carry the “rebranded” title. If you are not okay with it, you may wash the title to a clean title, but it is illegal.
3. Donate to Charity
Depending on the organizations available in your state, you may be able to donate an old car to charity. You will not receive a monetary reward for donating your vehicle. Donate to others with low income to get a free car from a charity.
Moreover, some organizations limit the sorts of cars that qualify for donations. Some prefer mainly sedan cars, hatchbacks, and a few more, while others do not specify. Whatever the case, know that donating old cars come with the advantage of tax reduction.
Would you love to donate? Check out the following avenues for your car donation.
Note: You may have to do a simple internet search to discover more charities nearby.
There are a few more charity organizations to mention that help eliminates cars that do not run.
4. Sell the Functional Parts
The only limitation here is that if the car is fast going extinct, it could be challenging to sell the parts. Also, before ditching out the entire car parts, confirm whether your country presses a strong law regarding old cars.
If the old car part is part of a banned car, for example, banned cars in the US, your best choice is to sell it to scrap or to auto dealers that can export it to a new country.
The best things to sell in your old car include the following:
- Tires and wheel cover
- Passenger and driver seats
- Headlights and tail lights
- Engine oil
- Additional components (radio, dashcam, etc.)
Above are the essential things to sell from the old car.
5. Make it a Business Hub
Turning an old ride into a business hub is an excellent idea regarding what to do with a car that is not worth fixing, and it is more like making the old car an avenue for transactions.
Since the car is no longer running, it is time to take advantage of its inability to run.
You can store your saleable items inside of it and sell them to buyers, an excellent idea to utilize to make money in your car.
Below are tips to get rid of a car that doesn’t run anymore:
- Hire a panel beater to beat the old vehicle into the desired shape.
- Clear the engine room as much as possible.
- Remove the bonnet (optional).
- Take off the roof.
- Display your products for sale.
You can even make it into any suitable design or hire an expert to provide a better structure.
6. Exchange for Something Valuable
You may trade an old car for something valuable or new, and it is a trade by barter, but it may be challenging to find someone to deal with unless you visit the pawnshops.
The major problem is that you may be unable to value the old car. If you’re transacting with an agent or agency, you may be cheated of the actual worth of that old car. Just make sure to bargain for the fair market value of your vehicle.
If it is challenging to value the car yourself, hire someone. Depending on your region, a car valuation may cost between $30 to $100, and you would pay less for an old rusty car.
Lastly, you will receive an item worth the value of your old car. Sometimes, you may be able to add additional cash plus the vehicle to trade for something of value.
7. Recyclethe Car as Scrapato a Scrap Yard
Some years ago, one would spend money before scraping an old car, and it has changed today as people even make a living off selling scrapped vehicles. It would be best if you read the guide I wrote on properly scraping a car so as not to make a mistake.
Meanwhile, recycling processes differ by state. While some countries have strict rules regarding the process, others do not. Most African countries have no strict rules governing car recycling, so it is super easy to do so. In most European countries, for example, recycling a car requires due procedures.
Every intending old car owner who wishes to see off the car would be expected to follow these procedures correctly. Also, as a car owner, you would be rewarded.
Before you scrap a car, do the following:
- Contact a licensed scrapyard
- Report to DVLA or the DMV (depending on your country).
- Prepare your V5C form
- Obtain a Certificate of Destruction (CoD)
- Submit the documents alongside the vehicle and get paid by the scrapyard.
8. Turn it into a Storage Unit
You can make the old vehicle a decent storage unit, but you need the parts that can attract insects and bugs and keep the framework. The details to get rid of would include everything in the hood (the engine, battery, hoses, etc.), tires, pipes, side mirrors, and lights.
It would be best if you had the framework only to turn the cast into a mini-storage facility. Make sure to fumigate the car to get rid of insects before storage.
9. Partake in a Demolition Derby
Before you get rid of the old car, you can partake in a demolition derby of your county. In some counties, you are paid for participation, while others only reward you when you win.
Typically, demolition derby motorsports occur during festivals and county fairs, and the last driver whose car is still functional wins the competition.
The objective is to ram into opponents’ cars and become the last man standing.
10. Donate to a museum
A typical classic vehicle can be stored for historical purposes. If your car is eligible, you may donate to the museum,m but you may not be paid before you give the vehicle to the museum; research whether they pay donors.
If you do not want to give the car to the museum, you may store it with you, but you have to maintain the vehicle and get rid of bugs nesting in it.
What to Do Before Getting Rid of an Old Car
Nowadays, you don’t just dispose of cars, and you may be acceptable,d and you could lose the money you could make from selling the car to scrap.
Before you get rid of an old car, do the following:
Is it Repairable?
Some old cars could be well repairable if you decide to rebuild and sell the vehicle. Some old cars seem useless, but not until a need arises.
A typical Mini Cooper could be old and rich rickety, but still very valuable. Please make time to thoroughly examine the car’s condition because it could be more valuable than it looks.
Remove Your Properties
There could be necessary paperwork in the car, and it could lie under the seats, in the cargo room, in the save box on the airbag or any other place in the car. We recommend searching under the front seats, passenger and driver seats.
Remove the Car Plates
The old car may be sent to another country, meaning an amber plate would be useless. So, remove the license plate,s whether fake license plates or not. You may have to run paperwork with that number plate to render it invalid because you cannot reuse it in a different car.
Terminate Active Insurance
Terminating active insurance is a brilliant idea before selling an old car that is not worth fixing.
Meanwhile, are you planning to get a new car as a replacement? If you are new to the automotive market, see how to buy a car as a new timer.
An old car that doesn’t run may seem like a burden or an eyesore, but it can be a valuable resource if you implement some of the ideas I shared on things to do with an old car that doesn’t run.
Recycling and donating the car can benefit the environment, and charity, while selling it as scrap, can help your finances. So rather than letting it sit and rot away, these options would help you turn metal into gold.