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On average, you might expect to pay anywhere between $50 to $100 for a local tow. However, some junkyards might offer free towing services. Even more, certain junkyards may pay you for the car itself, potentially offsetting or even surpassing your towing expenses.

Ever stared at an old, broken-down vehicle in your driveway and wondered, “How much to tow a car to Junkyard?” If so, you’re not alone.

It’s a common question asked by many vehicle owners who’ve decided it’s finally time to part ways with their rusty ride. Selling your car to a junkyard can be a convenient solution, but the process can be confusing.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the steps of selling your car to a junkyard, the cost of towing a car to a Junkyard, and how you can negotiate the best possible price for your specific situation.

What is Car Towing?

Car towing is a service that helps transport vehicles from one location to another, particularly when they’re inoperable. But have you ever stopped to consider the factors that influence the costs associated with this service?

Factors Affecting Car Towing Costs

The journey to determine the cost of getting your junk car towed to a junkyard involves considering the following factors:

1. Towing Distance:

Just like getting a pizza delivered, the further the distance, the higher the cost. The towing company will factor in both the distance they have to travel to reach your vehicle and the distance from your vehicle to the junkyard.

If the towing service charges per mile, the cost for regular vehicles generally varies between $2.00 and $7.00 per mile. For larger vehicles, this rate can be higher.

2. Vehicle Condition:

A car that can be driven onto the tow truck is cheaper to tow than one that’s rusted into place and needs extra manpower or equipment to load onto the truck. The vehicle’s weight also plays a role in determining the cost.

3. Towing Company Rates:

Different towing companies have varying rates. Some charge a flat rate for the first few miles, then an additional cost per mile after that. Others may have a base rate plus a fee per hour of labor. It’s worth shopping around for quotes.

4. Winching Cost

When a vehicle is difficult to access and requires a winch for removal, the cost can add up quickly, typically ranging from $50.00 to $200.00 per hour.

Ways to Minimize Towing Costs

There’s no need to fret about the cost, as there are several ways to reduce your car towing expenses.

  • Contacting Multiple Towing Services: Get quotes from multiple towing services. You’ll be surprised at how much prices can differ from one service to another.
  • Using Roadside Assistance Services: Do you have a roadside assistance subscription? These services often include a number of free or discounted tows each year.
  • Disassembling the Car Before Towing: If you’re handy with tools, removing heavy parts like the engine can reduce the weight of the car and thus the towing cost. Be sure to check with the junkyard first, as some prefer the car to be intact.

Pro Tip: Protect yourself from car towing scams by checking out our informative post on “how to avoid car shipping scams.

Junkyard Offerings

Understanding what a junkyard can offer you in terms of towing and payments is another important consideration.

Free Towing Services

Some junkyards offer free towing services. They may subtract the towing cost from the value of your vehicle or offer completely free towing if your vehicle is not worth much.

Payments for Your Vehicle

Depending on the condition and components of your vehicle, junkyards may even pay you for the car, offsetting or surpassing your towing expenses.

Quick Steps to Sell Your Car to a Junkyard

Selling your car to a junkyard doesn’t have to be stressful. By following these steps and exploring your options, you can efficiently get rid of your old vehicle and possibly make some money in the process.

1. Ownership Verification:

Before you can sell your vehicle to a junkyard, you need to confirm that you are the legal owner. Abandoned vehicles require a lawful process of ownership change. If you own the vehicle, proceed to the next step.

2. Explore Local Options:

Contact local towing companies and inquire about their abandoned vehicle impound programs. They can guide you on whether the vehicle can be legally removed from your property. Remember, if you request removal, you might have to sign for it, which is public information.

3. Cost Consideration:

When selling your car to a junkyard, towing costs can vary based on factors such as distance, vehicle condition, and local regulations. Some junkyards offer free towing, while others charge a fixed fee or per-mile rate. Always confirm the costs with local authorities and the junkyard before proceeding.

4. Gather Vehicle Information:

To get an accurate quote, gather essential details about your car, including year, make, model, submodel, mileage, drivability, tire condition, and any significant damage. Most companies have restrictions on the age of the car they accept.

5. Shop Around:

Reach out to multiple junkyards to get different quotes. Provide accurate information about your vehicle to get the most precise offers. Negotiate the price if possible, but remember that the initial offer is often close to the final price.

6. Prepare Your Vehicle:

Remove all personal belongings from the car and any aftermarket parts you want to keep. Junkyards typically retrieve the vehicle from your location, so ensure clear access for the tow truck driver.

7. Report the Sale:

Depending on your location, you might need to report the sale to the Department of Motor Vehicles or state authorities. This step ensures legal compliance and protects you from liability after the sale.

Further Read:


Can I sell an abandoned vehicle without a title?

Generally, you need the vehicle’s title or proof of ownership to sell it to a junkyard. If you’ve lost the title, contact your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles for a replacement.

Further read: Can you trade in a car without a title?

Do junkyards pay for cars?

Yes, many junkyards offer cash for cars, especially if they have salvageable parts or valuable scrap metal.

Does the size of my car affect the cost of towing?

Typically, yes. Larger vehicles may require specialized towing equipment or vehicles, which can increase the cost.

How do I negotiate a better price with a junkyard?

Be honest about your vehicle’s condition and gather multiple quotes. Politely negotiate based on these offers, but keep in mind that the initial price is often close to the final offer.

Can I negotiate the price with the towing company?

Yes, some towing companies may be open to negotiation, especially if you’re a repeat customer or have a particularly straightforward towing job.


  • Justin Smith

    Justin Smith is a highly skilled freelance writer with over three years of experience in content editing, writing, and SEO. Specializing in the automotive industry and car trade insights, she delivers valuable and engaging articles. With a passion for cars and a focus on keyword ranking, Justin Smith's expertise empowers readers to navigate the complexities of buying and selling vehicles. Choose Justin Smith as your trusted author for authoritative car trade insights.