Is my car salvageable? Or is it gonna snap on the highway?

Toyota corolla 2006 car quiet rusted, part of the body gone, and a section of the suspension has a connector bolted to a piece of chassis almost completely rusted away (circled in red)… Is this connector necessary to drive? If it is removed will the car not drive?

Want to restore this section and keep the car functional. Car drives great, just the rust is concerning.

images: Imgur: The magic of the Internet

Mored updated video showing more of the rust removed / damage: rust - YouTube

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That car is scrap metal. It is not safe.


That car belongs only in a scrap yard


Is it salvageable?


But that’s nothing.

People drive around in MInnesota with cars that look like this all the time.

But start looking for a replacement vehicle soon.


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I wouldn’t even put that vehicle on a hoist . . .




When you say, “I can’t put the vehicle on a hoist to service it!”, is when people junk it here.


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Sucks to hear. So what exactly am I looking at, what is rusted through I believe is called the sill / rocker panel? And the bracket circled is connected to what I believe to be the trailing arm mount? Could this car still operate without the bracket circled? What would happen if you remove this bracket?

Mind you - its only this side of the car that has this rust, the other side is fully intact. I’d hate to have to scrap it, all the components run great and only has 125k miles.

I like this car so much that if If I can get this car fixed i’ll likley buy the exact same used car.

What has rusted away is sheet metal

And if this is only in one corner of the car it’s not a reason to junk the vehicle

As long as the doors still line up you;re okay.

The other metal you see is made of thicker gauge steel. So it’s going to take a while for that to rust away…

But understand, once sheet metal starts to rust, it takes no time for it to look like this.



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No matter what you decide, just remember the condition of the car and the amount of rust involved and drive accordingly…
You are not as safe in it now as you once were and it is only getting worse…

Down in the South, that is considered junk, stay away, we don’t won’t to work on it, right to refuse… lol
But up in Minnesota, I guess it is considered slightly used with some rust… So depends on if a shop is willing to rack it and work on it or not…

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There are lots of cars on the road with rusted rocker panels. That area must have gotten hit at one point and the rust started since the paint was broken away.

The floor comes up and flattens out again under the door. The bottom two pieces of the rocker panel make up the bottom of the enclosed area. They are joined together at the bottom where there is a pinch weld. Part of that area is where the car is made to be jacked up. That section is reinforced.

I don’t know what that thing that is inside the enclosed rocker panel area is for. Maybe it is some added crash structure? It must be cheaper to make cars out of more pieces of thin sheet metal rather than make the existing metal thicker.

Some vehicles didn’t have enclosed rocker panels. There was no bottom area to rust away since it was never there. But since your car has an enclosed rocker panel with the bottom rusted away, people say it must be junked!

On Tauruses when that whole area rusts away people have to jack it up using that rear control arm mount.

Been questioning the feasibility of repairing this. Been doing a lot of homework.

It would appear the bracket im talking about connects to a hub that contains the rear axle. From looking at it I cant tell what its actual purpose is. To add over extra sturdiness to the cars frame? Prevent Raddling / moment. Im not 100% sure. This axle hub appears self contained so I thinking this bracket just adds to the overall support of the car frame. What do you think?

This video shows dismantling the rear axle giving a better idea of how things look: 2003 - 2008 Toyota Corolla BROKEN Rear Axle Assembly - Auto Repair - YouTube

Pic related is another example from another car.

Ive given it a lot of thought, I think im going to buy this welder ( I never welded before)

Then get some 16-18 gauge (not sure yet) sheet metal from home depot to repair the rusted structural parts thats connected to the bracket, and then move on to the exterior car sheeting.

I would like to get a wire brush and brush the hell out of all the rust, then paint the underside with a layer of Lanolin.

Think this welder will work for the job?

The late great Miss Belvidere.

No it will not, and you cannot repair this thing. If you post the address where you keep this car, I’ll notify you local authorities to haul it away before you kill yourself and possibly others. It’s junk.


1st rule of welding in your case is that you can not weld rust…
You are probably going to be blowing through the very thing sheet metal once ground down enough to make it rust free,
All the TikTok videos and Facebook crap you see where people are showing how easy it is or how to weld like a pro are mostly idiots, they have 0 penetration and chewing gum would probably hold better… Yes you can lay down a pretty weld but if there is no penetration of heat then all you are doing is skimming the top of the metal, welding is a melting of 2 seperate pieces of metal to join them so they become one… Too little heat and it will not hold, too much heat and you will blow through the metal and burn it away so there is an ever bigger gap between the 2 seperate metals…

Arc welding is better for very thick welding where a lot of heat is needed and has it’s place, but not on a car… Mig when using gas, would be your better investment and you can control the weld much better… Mig with out gas uses a flux core and is not as clean as gas Mig…
Also part of welding thin metal is controlling the heat, too much heat from welding will warp the hell out of metal…

There is nothing left of your car to weld to for the most part, yes a very skilled fabricator could repair the damage but you could buy another car cheaper…
Not to mention the chance of catching your car on fire…

Welding 2 different thicknesses metal presents another problem as you have to apply more heat to the thicker metal while still giving the thinner metal proper heat for proper penetration…

Hear is a video that helps explain the difference, pay attention to the whole thing, kinda goofy but good…

That car’s chassis has the automotive equivalent of terminal cancer.
(i.e.: too late for either treatment or surgery)


No it could not. That locates the wheel front to back. Hit the brake and the tire shoots back into the wheelwell.

The rusted corner nearby is the “frame” structure of a unit body car. It is missing. The trailing arm bracket has lost much of its support.

I know you don’t want to hear it… but this car is scrap.

It has lost its structural integrity, and is not safe.


If i was a physician, and that car was a person, I’d say it’s condition was “incompatible with life”.

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Someone is getting their Fisher Price My First Welder!



That is a support bracket to reinforce the rocker panel, note the location of the fuel fill tube to the fuel tank. It is not a suspension bracket, forget about trying to rebuild it. The rear axle beam mount is welded to the chassis.