repairing car
By Mike Richards Updated: 05/22/2019 Posted: 10/21/2015

When you buy a salvage car from a vehicle auction your goal is likely to be rebuilding it insuring it so it can be put back on the road again.

However, the path to getting that done might not be as clear-cut as you might think. There are many questions that will need to be answered if you’re delving into the world of reconstructing salvage cars. Here are just a few tips on rebuilding and insuring them to get you started.

Inspections

The exact requirements for a salvage inspection differ from one state to another. However, there’s a common thread that runs through nearly all of them: if your state requires you to have your rebuilt salvage car inspected before you can get it back on the road, the main concern of the official inspecting it will be that all your replacement parts are well-documented with bills of sale and receipts.

As long as all your paperwork is in order and your car doesn’t show any serious flaws while it’s being inspected, you’ll likely pass, paving the way for your car to be reclassified as “rebuilt” or “reconstructed” instead of just “salvage.” This means you’ll be able to register it just as you would any other car in your state.

Insurance Companies Hate Rebuilt Salvage Cars

Insurance companies tend not to feel confident in providing coverage to a rebuilt salvage car. With very few state inspections concerning themselves with drivability or safety of a rebuilt salvage car, there’s little in the way of proof to show to an insurer that your newly-refurbished vehicle is in proper condition. This exposes the insurance company to massive liabilities.

For this reason, most insurers will not offer much in the way of more than personal liability and/or property damage coverage to anyone who owns a rebuilt salvage vehicle.

However, most car owners want to ensure that their vehicles have more than just the basic coverage that’s required to get their car back on the road legally. If you want an insurer to provide you with physical damage coverage in the form of collision or comprehensive insurance, you’ll need to find one that’s willing to work with you.

Typically, this entails subjecting your vehicle to another inspection, one that deals much more closely with its physical condition. An agent for the insurance company will take several photographs of your car from different angles in order to document its condition and to use as a record in the event of an accident.

Once this inspection is finished, an insurance provider will be much more willing to offer you a higher level of insurance to keep your investment safe, though you still might have to pay higher premium prices than if you had a non-salvage vehicle.

Find information on Rebuilt Title Laws for Each US State. Explore our Vehicle Auctions, as well as finding more information about How These Auctions Work.

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