Best way to scrap my car UK: all you need to know about fees, best places to sell & more
Have an old banger that you think no-one would want? You can still still pocket a few hundred quid by selling your car for scrap.
If you want to sell your car for scrap, there’s no shortage of companies willing to pay to take it away.
If you type ‘scrap my car’ or ‘sell my car for scrap’ into any online search engine, options tend to fall into two camps.
Scrap my car: how it works
With most ‘cash for scrap’ car sites, you enter your car registration number for a free instant valuation.
In most cases, your car won’t even need to work, so it’s an easy way to get rid of a non-runner or MOT failure, however, cars must be in one piece, with all four wheels.
Most scrappage companies offer a free collection service, although Webuyanycar is one that doesn’t.
How can I get the best price when I sell my car for scrap?
There is no need to waste your time cleaning up or fixing any minor issues when selling your car for scrap.
At this stage its only value is scrap metal, and as a general rule, the bigger and heavier your car, the higher the price.
So how much can you expect to get paid for scrapping your car?
The bad news is prices have been falling steadily since the start of the year, and are down around £75 per car.
Exactly how much you will get will depend on the company you sell to, but this analysis of the five most commonly scrapped cars listed by CarTakeBack gives us a rough idea.
It claims that the current average scrap value of a Ford Focus is £294, a Vauxhall Corsa is worth £234, a Ford Fiesta sells for £282, a Vauxhall Astra goes for £256 and a Vauxhall Zafira £316.
So, roughly speaking, you’re looking at between £250 and £350.
The golden rule here at Sell My Car Guide is to always take the time to shop around and get online quotes from a few sites before selling a car for scrap.
And even though we’re only talking about small sums of money when selling for scrap, it could still be worth your while.
For starters, some car-buying companies will charge you a fee for selling while others don’t, and similarly only some offer a home collection service.
We’ve put together a short breakdown of how each of the main car-buying sites that purchase scrap cars work towards the end of this guide.
You’ll find it under the heading: ‘Selling my car for scrap: what are my options?’
But first, let’s explain a little more about how the process works and what you’ll need to do before going ahead and scrapping your car.
How do I scrap my car in the UK?
Vehicles should only be scrapped at an Authorised Treatment Facility (ATF), licensed by the Environment Agency.
This means certain rules are followed when dismantling and disposing of vehicles and it’s illegal to scrap a car anywhere else.
Once your car is scrapped, you should get a ‘Certificate of Destruction’ (CoD), sent within seven days.
This also triggers any tax refund due, which is paid directly by the DVLA.
VW Golf with bonnet up (Image: Isaac Levy – Pixabay)
What do I need to do before I scrap my car?
After you accept the valuation offer for your soon-to-be scrapped car, it’s not as simple as just handing over the keys.
Under the Scrap Metal Dealers Act, you must produce proof of ID, along with a valid V5C, vehicle registration document.
A photo driving licence with your current address plus a recent utility bill is usually sufficient.
When waving off your car, you need to fill in the yellow section of the V5C and send this to the DVLA.
This confirms you have sold your car to a motor trader or dealer.
How will I get paid when I scrap my car? Cash or bank transfer?
It is illegal to pay cash for cars scrapped in England and Wales so payment must be made by bank transfer or cheque.
With most companies, payment by bank transfer is almost instant as you hand over your car, however Webuyanycar charge a fee for ‘same’ or ‘next day’ payment, otherwise, you must wait four days.
What are my options when I sell my car for scrap?
Here’s how car scrappage works with some of the main companies in the market.
Scrap my car at CarTakeBack
CarTakeBack claim to be the UK’s largest scrap car recycling network and have scrapped over six million cars since 2005.
Cars are scrapped so no chance it will be sold on.
To get a valuation quote, go to the website and enter your registration details. Quotes last for seven days.
CarTakeBack offer free collection across the UK within two working days, which is available Monday to Saturday between 7am – 7pm.
You will also get a four-hour ‘collection window’ and in some cases can even arrange a Sunday pick-up.
You can also opt to drop off your car at one of its 300 branches.
Payment is made by bank transfer and usually in your account straight after collection.
No fees to pay with this one.
Scrap my car at Webuyanycar
Webuyanycar aren’t a ‘scrap car’ site but they promise to buy cars in any condition,
However, the big downside is they don’t offer collection.
This means you need to take your car to one of its 500 centres, and get yourself home afterwards, which could be a big problem if you’ve a non-runner to scrap.
There’s also no promise your car will be scrapped, as Webuyanycar say it won’t make a final decision at the point of sale.
Payment is slow compared with CarTakeBack and ScrapCarComparison, taking four days,
Its ‘Immediate Payment’ service costs £29.75, which means money in your account on the same day, but this is only available if your car is valued at £500 or more.
Webuyanycar says it will send the money within 15 minutes, but adds it can take banks up to two hours to process the transaction.
Alternatively, it’s £24.75 for next-day payment (again, your car must be worth at least £500).
Finally, as your car may be sold on for spares, you’ll get a notification from the DVLA of a ‘change in ownership’ rather than a Certificate of Destruction.
Scrap my car at ScrapCarComparison
ScrapCarComparison claim to be the only company offering a comparison service.
After putting in your registration details, the site then compares prices offered from over one hundred buyers so you can choose the best one.
Online quotes are only valid for 24 hours, much less than some other companies, so you need to make a quick decision.
You can sell any make and model, in any condition, even non-runners or vehicles without an MOT.
Collection is arranged through one of ScrapCarComparison’s collection partners, all of whom are checked and vetted and offer a free collection service across the UK.
Payment is made by the collection company, not ScrapCarComparison.
With bank transfer payment can be made instantly on collection or you can have a cheque.
Scrap my car at Jamjar
You can scrap any car through JamJar, from non-runners to flood-damaged vehicles, or those with engine or gearbox problems.
Once you put in your registration, valuation offers come in from Jamjar’s network of recycling centres so you’re not selling to Jamjar direct.
After you choose which buyer’s quote to accept, you arrange collection with them, which can usually be done within three days of accepting the offer.
There may be a collection fee, depending on the company, so check before agreeing to sell.
Payment by bank transfer is made by the buyer, usually within two hours of handing over your car.