How To Junk Your Car In Pennsylvania

Cars are junked for different reasons, including accident damage, mechanical failure, or expensive repair costs. Some cars are junked because they can’t be driven legally. If you’re junking your vehicle in the state of Pennsylvania, you need to know several things before doing so.

There are three ways you can get rid of your junk car in Pennsylvania. How? You can sell your vehicle to a junkyard, sell the vehicle to a junk car service online, or sell it to the state of Pennsylvania.

How To Junk a Car In Pennsylvania

As previously mentioned, there are three ways you can junk your car in Pennsylvania, regardless of its condition and if it’s running or not operational.

Selling Your Junk Car Online in Pennsylvania

There are different online services that specialize in buying junk and non-operational vehicles in Pennsylvania. All three companies work with a network of towing companies that pick up your car for free, tow it away and pay you immediately.

You can contact any one of these towing companies for a free quote to see how much they would pay you for your car. Online services are the easiest way to get rid of a junk car in the state of Pennsylvania.

Companies that buy junk cars online in Pennsylvania:

  • Peddle
  • Car Brain
  • Junk Car Zone

Sell Your Junk Car To A Junkyard

Here is a list of junkyards in Pennsylvania that buy junk cars.

In the state of Pennsylvania, you are required to provide specific vehicle information and certain paperwork. If your vehicle was not previously titled in Pennsylvania, you must complete a vehicle identification number (VIN) and Odometer Verification. The PA DOT has a fact sheet here that you can check out. Keep in mind that you will also need a notarized bill of sale.

Pennsylvania Junkyard Locations

Here are the names of different junkyards that are available in Pennsylvania. You can find a Pennsylvania junkyard that services your area here.

S&S Auto Salvage, LLC
1999 Frankstown Rd
Johnstown, PA 15902
(814) 536-2249

Monday – Friday (8:30 AM to 5 PM)
Saturday and Sunday (Closed)

Harry’s U Pull It
1010 Winters Ave
Hazleton Township, PA 18202
(570) 459-9901

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday (9AM to 7PM)
Saturday and Sunday (8 AM to 4 PM)

Cascioli Towing & Pocono Junkcar
107 Countryside Drive
Brodheadsville, PA 18322
(570) 994-8510

Monday – Friday (9 AM to 5 PM)
Saturday and Sunday (9 AM to 5 PM)

Paperwork You Need to Scrap a Car in Pennsylvania

When you want to scrap a car in the state of Pennsylvania, there’s different paperwork you need to complete or submit. The required paperwork to scrap a car in Pennsylvania is as follows:

The Vehicle’s VIN

A vehicle identification number (VIN) is a set of letters and numbers that create a 17-digit combination. You might be under the impression that these numbers and letters are random, but every vehicle has a VIN that provides every detail about the vehicle, such as the vehicle’s paint color and manufacturing plant. The VIN is used in different scenarios, such as checking for outstanding finances, whether the vehicle is subject to an insurance claim, and other significant factors. The junkyard uses the VIN to properly ID your vehicle.

Lien sale documents (properly executed for registration and transfer)

In Pennsylvania, this state participates in the electronic lien and title program. You are required to submit the Application for Enrollment/Change in Electronic Lien and Title System (Form MV-37) and pay any applicable PA processing fees to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PA DOT).

A salvage certificate (properly endorsed for title transfer)

In the state of Pennsylvania, your vehicle is considered a salvage vehicle if your vehicle is damaged to the extent that the car’s repairs cost more than the car’s total value. In general, your PA insurance provider will determine whether your vehicle is a total loss.

Although you’re junking your vehicle, you must obtain a salvage vehicle title. You or your insurance company can apply for the salvage vehicle title. If your insurance company declared your vehicle a salvage vehicle as part of an insurance settlement, the insurance company is responsible for applying for the salvage vehicle title. If your insurance company was not involved, applying for the salvage vehicle title is your responsibility.

Nonresident vehicle registration and transfer clearance requirement

When you register a vehicle in Pennsylvania with a non-Pennsylvania vehicle title, you must present an accurate odometer reading and VIN verification. This verification can only be performed by a law enforcement officer, a PA DMV employee, or a licensed Pennsylvania auto dealer.

License plates

One important factor of junking your vehicle is removing the license plates. Did you know leaving the license plates on your vehicle puts you in a situation where you could be held liable for any situations that occur with the vehicle? For example, if you leave the plates on your vehicle, and the vehicle is involved in any kind of illegal activity, whether you’re involved or not, you could be paying out-of-pocket for all expenses because of “owner liability”. This liability includes different factors, such as damage to the vehicle, towing fees, and other instances.

In Pennsylvania, you must surrender your license plates if you canceled or plan to cancel the insurance on the vehicle. The insurance policy must be removed because you no longer need it. Once you cancel your insurance policy, the insurance company will notify the PA DMV. When the PA DMV is notified,  you have 30 days to surrender your license plates. Failure to do so will result in your driver’s license suspension.

Do You Need a Vehicle Title to Junk a Car in Pennsylvania?

A salvage vehicle title is required when you’re selling your vehicle to a Pennsylvania junkyard. You will need to complete an Application for Nonrepairable or Salvage Certificate (Form MV-6). Why is the vehicle’s title required? The vehicle’s title is an essential document when the time comes to junk your vehicle because it proves you’re the vehicle’s owner and you have the legal right to sell it. Once you junk your vehicle, take the vehicle’s title to a PA DMV branch.

Can I Scrap a Car Without a Vehicle Title in Pennsylvania?

There are some junkyards in Pennsylvania that might junk your vehicle without a vehicle title, but keep in mind that you will probably receive less money than you anticipated. Why? Junkyards have to pay the fee to transfer ownership of the vehicle, so the additional funds will come from the sale of your vehicle.

How Old Does a Car Have to be to Not Require a Vehicle Title in PA?

Most vehicles in the state of Pennsylvania are required to have a vehicle title. However, there are a few exceptions, such as certain farm vehicles. There are antique car laws in PA. The state of Pennsylvania considers a vehicle an antique car if it is at least 15 years old.

Can You Junk a Car with an Expired Registration In Pennsylvania?

Yes, you can junk a vehicle with an expired registration in the state of Pennsylvania. The vehicle’s registration is ideally for vehicles that are being driven on the roads and highways of Pennsylvania.

If your vehicle has been out of commission for a while and you are choosing to sell it to a PA junkyard, you are not required to register the vehicle. Keep in mind that since your vehicle is unregistered, you will need to have the vehicle towed to the junkyard because you are not permitted to legally drive the vehicle on the roads of Pennsylvania.

Can I Scrap My Car Without a Registration Document?

In Pennsylvania, there are some junkyards that will scrap your vehicle without a registration document. The trick will be finding a junkyard that charges a low fee or no fee to recycle your junk vehicle into materials that can be recycled into steel, bricks, and other materials.

Make sure you inform the PA DMV that you have sold your vehicle to a junkyard by getting a Certificate of Destruction (CoD) from the junkyard and submitting it to a PA DMV branch.

Can I Scrap a Car That Is Not Registered In My Name?

Being allowed to scrap a vehicle that is not registered in your name sounds like a plan, but no, you are not allowed to scrap a vehicle that is not registered in your name in the state of Pennsylvania. When you junk a vehicle in PA, you are required to submit some kind of proof of ownership document that reveals you are the vehicle’s legal owner. Be advised that proof of a valid Pennsylvania auto insurance policy does not suffice as a proof of ownership document, and most PA junkyards will not accept a bill of sale.

What is a Junk Title In Pennsylvania?

In Pennsylvania, the DMV describes a junk vehicle title as a legal document that allows the vehicle owner to prove their ownership rights over the salvage vehicle. PA’s Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is responsible for issuing salvage certificate titles in the state of Pennsylvania.

Be advised that junk vehicles are not safe to operate on the roads or highways in Pennsylvania. If you have a junk vehicle, you can only sell the vehicle to a junkyard or sell the vehicle’s parts as scraps.

How Do I Get a Junk Vehicle Title in Pennsylvania?

Obtaining a vehicle title in the state of Pennsylvania is the same as the process in other states. In order to receive a junk vehicle title in PA, you need to provide the PA DMV with different information. This information includes:

  • Provide the vehicle’s VIN
  • Your address for the junk vehicle title (if applicable)
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Photo of your vehicle
  • Photo of the vehicle’s VIN Certificate of Destruction (obtained from a junkyard in Pennsylvania)

Be advised, that you may be asked to provide more or fewer documents depending on the city in Pennsylvania you reside.

Can You Sell a Car With a Salvage Vehicle Title in Pennsylvania?

You may believe that your salvage vehicle is a total loss but the good news is that you can sell your salvage vehicle in the state of Pennsylvania. Keep in mind that you are not permitted to operate this vehicle on the road or highways in PA because these vehicles are considered unsafe. If you would like to drive the vehicle again, you must rebuild the vehicle.

In order to sell a vehicle with a salvage title in the state of Pennsylvania, you need to:

  • Apply for a demonstration only temporary tag (if applicable)
  • Conduct a VIN inspection (if necessary)
  • Record the odometer reading on the vehicle’s title
  • Complete the PA vehicle title transfer at a PA DMV office
  • Remove the license plates from the vehicle when you sell it
  • Surrender the vehicle’s license plates (if applicable)

What You Should Do With Your Pennsylvania License Plates?

You are required to surrender your vehicle’s license plates and registration to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Mail your license plates to:

Bureau of Motor Vehicles
Return Tag Unit
P.O. Box 68597
Harrisburg, PA 17106-8597

FAQs for Getting Rid Of Your Junk Car In Pennsylvania

Do I Need To Notify The PA DMV If I Junk My Car?

Yes. Make sure you notify the PA DMV when you junk your vehicle so you are no longer associated with the vehicle. You may also be required to submit a Damage Disclosure Statement. Check the reverse side of the vehicle’s title for the Damage Disclosure Statement.

Do You Need To Notify The DMV If Your Car Is Totaled In Pennsylvania?

Yes. If your vehicle is deemed a total loss, and you intend on keeping the vehicle or accept a settlement, you must provide the PA DMV with an Application for Salvage Certificate or Nonrepairable Vehicle Certificate (Form MV-6).

What Happens If You Abandon A Car In Pennsylvania?

It’s not a good idea to abandon your vehicle on the side of the road or anywhere else in the state of Pennsylvania whether it’s a junk vehicle or not. Abandoning your vehicle on any street, road, or highway in Pennsylvania will result in the vehicle being towed. The company that towed the vehicle will try to contact you and determine what you want to do with the vehicle. You will also be subject to different penalties and fees.

How Much Does It Cost to Junk a Car In Pennsylvania?

In most instances, there is no cost to junk your vehicle in Pennsylvania. Be advised that you may have to pay a fee to the towing company to pick up your vehicle if the vehicle is not in operating condition.

What Are the Current Scrap Metal Prices in Pennsylvania?

It is good to know what prices per pound a scrapyard or scrap metal recycle company in Pennsylvania is paying before you visit one with the intention of selling your vehicle. Below is the standard price per pound for scrap metal in Pennsylvania.

  • Copper (clean) – $4.12 – $5.07
  • Aluminum – $0.19 – $1.01
  • Cans – $0.06 – $0.10
  • Clean Brass – $2.47 – $3.30
  • Lead – $0.57 – $0.91
  • Stainless Steel – $0.82 – $1.24
  • Steel Radiators – $1.24 – $2.88

Now that you know what to expect when junking your vehicle in the state of Pennsylvania, you can successfully junk your vehicle with confidence. Happy junking!