How much should I sell my car for?

You’ll have to forgive me for this question since I’m clueless when it comes to pricing cars.

I have a 1998 Subaru Forester with about 177,000 miles. It overheated and the engine is completely destroyed. The dealership said that the whole engine needs to be replaced for $3800. Obviously, I’d rather sell/trade the car than buy a new engine. The question is how much could I sell the car with a bad engine? I’m thinking that I can only sell it for parts, but how much would the car be worth if I only sold it for parts?

It all depends whether you can find a buyer for each component.

For instance, it your seats are decent, leather without too much wear and tear, you can probably easily sell them for $200. A transmission maybe 250. There’s a whole bunch more, obviously: ECM, radio, gas tank, alternator, AC, power steering - all little bits add up, if someone needs the parts.
Use ebay and craigslist, if that’s the route you’re going to choose.

Scanning ebay and craigslist for similar parts is also a good way to determine a ballpark figure for your parts.

Are you going to dismantle the car, or just sell it whole?

the biggest part with value is the engine, and that is toast. The transmission is next high value part, then transfer case and differentials. Window glass and seats are worth something. Other parts like the alternator, power steering pump, etc. will be sold. Without a good engine you are looking at about $500-1000 as a parts car.

You can sell it “as is” for parts, or as a fixer upper. There are a lot of mechanics who buy these cars and shop around for a used engine. A family down the street has 4 sons, all mechanics. They show up with an array of cars that they transform after hours into functioning vehicles which they then sell at a profit.

I would not go and sell the parts individually; too much work and you’ll have a wreck in your driveway for about a year.

:smiley: You say that like that’s a bad thing, Dognic.

My son totaled out his 2001 Mitsu Eclipse about four years ago. We parked it in my driveway, and covered it with a car cover. Meanwhile, he’d arranged for someone who wanted it for parts to come get it the next weekend. It hadn’t been sitting for two days before the local law enforcement paid me a visit and said someone had complained about “the wreck” sitting in my driveway. I assured him it was going to disappear in 4 days time, and he took me at my word.

I know darn good and well who filed the complaint. He makes it tougher to do long range projects if they’re gonna sit in my driveway for any length of time.

I’m guessing the market for older Foresters with bad engines may not be so hot. Some cars typically fail body/rust/crash first, I bet lots of Foresters fail engine first…

I think thats why my neighbor won’t talk to me. I think he thinks I complained about his truck but it wasn’t me, it was the guy on the other side of him that moved to Florida. Not that I wasn’t in favor of it or anything but it wasn’t me. I try to explain but he won’t talk to me. You have to be nice to your neighbors and don’t park junk in your yard. And he’s the one that told the realtor to complain about my pristine classic Riviera in my driveway with current plates when he was buying the place. And I was the first one here so I ought to have some say in what the neighborhood looks like. But I wasn’t the one that complained about the tanned guy down the street that doesn’t cut his grass except about every month, either. Be considerate to your neighbors is all. Now on my way to Walmart there is a truck that’s been up on blocks for a couple years but what do I care, its miles away.

That sucks. Hope you still have the Riviera.

Just call a local auto recycler and have them come and pick it up. You could get $400.00 for it as it sits.

Parting out a vehicle isn’t fun. First, you need any special tools required to remove the parts without damage. Second, people who call saying they’re intrested in the part(s) don’t show up 70% of the time.


If they DO show up, and you let them take off their own parts, 75% of the time they damage another good part in the process.

My guess is 500 dollars if you get the right buyer and even that is debateable.

Do NOT allow anyone to remove parts. Odds are they will destroy the rest of the car doing so and possibly take some stuff you didn’t know they going to get.

Anyone who has been to a Pull A Part salvage yard has no doubt seen carnage on a major scale there.
People will spend half a day’s time and destroy 500 dollars worth of parts just to get some widget they could go buy new at AutoZone for 20 bucks.

Yeah, definitely don’t have them pull stuff off. You don’t want cheap people running around in your driveway, being able to have a close look at what you may have in your garage. I’ve had some bad experiences with that. Not everyone out there is honest.
Since then, I don’t like having people visit me so usually offer to drop stuff in their driveway for gas money or will say that I can deliver, meet them halfway if they are further away, if they pay the stated price. That’s a lot more secure.

You could pull the more important parts off and then have the hulk dragged out of your driveway. That’s a weekend’s worth of work.
When I bought my rambler it came with an identical parts car so took all the stuff off I could use or others may be able use. The wrecker just dragged the wheel-less hunk of steel away. Got $300 for it.