The term is often thrown around, heard all the time in conversation or out of anger at times when a car doesn’t perform as it should, but what actually counts as a junk car? A lot of people picture an orange rusty old little car sitting on a lawn or in the driveway, I mean that was the first thing that came to mind before I became so lovingly acquainted with this area. It never occurred to me that anything beyond that mental image could be called a junk car, let alone considered a junk car. Just some old “thing” that had no purpose for anyone, you see, I still can’t get that image out of my head, but in the eyes of many people, a car can be considered scrap for numerous different reasons or conditions.
Aside from the image that’s ingrained in my mind from back then, a car that just doesn’t drive anymore is also viewed by many as junk. You can probably imagine a person kicking the tire of their car because it just stopped working in the middle of a freeway. It’s the car on the side of the road because the transmission started to grind and just broke, or the radiator exploded because something overheated the car, or the car in the driveway for some weird reason that just doesn’t seem to want to start. Cars that have been in an accident can also be considered scrap cars, especially if they can no longer be repaired.
In general, any car that has little or no value to its owner is considered a junk car. Whether the car is not driving, was destroyed in an accident, or the cost of repairing a broken car exceeds the car’s perceived value by the owner, it is considered a scrap or salvage car. Aside from people’s perception, many states have the power to declare a car scrap, salvaged, rebuilt, etc. Typically this happens after a car has been in an accident and has been sold to a dealer by an insurance company because the total damage and repair costs have exceeded 75% of the vehicle’s market value. Most people don’t know this, but when a car is bought by insurance companies, it is considered a total loss, and most if not all states are scrapped and branded with a junk, scrap, or rebuild title to get a car With this type of title registered in many states, a separate anti-theft inspection is required in addition to all other state requirements, which is not a fun task at all.
I hope you found this article helpful and discovered how many people, companies and even states can consider a vehicle scrap, salvaged or rebuilt.