salvage car
What is Salvage title?

Understanding Salvage Cars and How to Profit from Selling Them

By Daisy Emah-Emah Posted: 10/20/2023

What are salvage cars?

Salvage title are vehicles that have been deemed a total loss by an insurance company. This means that the cost of repairing the vehicle is greater than its market value. Salvage vehicles typically sell at auctions like Copart, where you purchase for a fraction of the cost of a clean-title vehicle.

Some buyers buy to fix and resell, others for use or as project cars. Regardless of the reason for buying, everyone agrees that some really good deals come from buying salvage title vehicles and sometimes, it can be the other way around. 

Not all salvage title vehicles are total lemons or complete write-offs and if you are considering purchasing one, it is important to understand what type of vehicles make up salvage title autos. 

We’ve broken it down below.

Person inspecting Ford Model at a salvage auction

Categories of Salvage Cars

1. Rebuilt Salvage Vehicles

These are vehicles that have been repaired and inspected by a state-licensed mechanic. Rebuilt salvage vehicles have a rebuilt title, which indicates that the vehicle has past damage but repairs to meet safety standards.

2. Repairable Salvage Cars 

These are vehicles that have damage but no repairs. Repairable salvage are typically sold “as is,” meaning that the buyer is responsible for making any necessary repairs.

3. Parts-Only Salvage Cars 

These are vehicles that are too damaged to be repaired. Parts-only salvages sell for their scrap metal value.

Reasons a Vehicle May be Classified as Salvage

1. Accidents: The most common reason for a vehicle to be classified as salvage is an accident. If the damage from an accident is too severe to repair, the insurance company will total the vehicle.

2. Theft: If a vehicle is stolen and recovered, the insurance company may classify it as salvage if the damage is significant.

3. Vandalism: If a car is vandalized and the damage is extensive, the insurance company may classify it as salvage.

4. Natural Disasters: Vehicles that are damaged in natural disasters, such as floods, hurricanes, or tornadoes, may be classified as salvage.

Pros and cons of buying salvage cars


– Lower Cost: Salvage cars typically sell for a fraction of the cost of clean-title vehicles. This can be a great way to save money on a car.

– Wide Selection: Salvage car auctions typically have a wide selection of vehicles to choose from. This means that you are more likely to find the make and model that you are looking for.

– Potential for Profit: If you are able to repair a salvage car yourself, you may be able to sell it for a profit.


– Hidden Damage: Salvage cars may have hidden damage that is not immediately apparent. This can lead to unexpected repair costs.

– Difficulty Obtaining Financing: It can be difficult to obtain financing for a salvage car. Some lenders will not finance salvage cars at all, while others will only finance them with a high-interest rate.

– Decreased Resale Value: Salvage vehicles typically have a lower resale value than clean-title vehicles. This means that you may not be able to get back as much money as you invested in the car if you decide to sell it.

How Can I Make Profit Selling Salvage Cars?

You can make a profit selling salvage cars in a number of ways:

1. Repairing and Reselling the Vehicle

You can purchase repairable salvage cars, repair them, and then resell them for a profit. This can be a lucrative way to make money, as the cost of repairs is often much lower than the market value of the repaired vehicle.

2. Selling the Vehicle for Parts 

You can purchase parts-only salvage cars and sell the individual parts for a profit. This can be a good way to make money from vehicles that are too damaged to be repaired.

3. Exporting the Vehicle

You can export salvage cars to other countries where there is a demand for them. This can be a good way to make money from vehicles that are not in high demand in the local market.

Tips for Buying a Salvage Vehicle

1. Do your research. Before you buy a salvage car, it is important to do your research and learn as much as you can about the vehicle. This includes obtaining a copy of the vehicle’s history report and having a mechanic inspect the vehicle.

2. Be prepared to make repairs. Salvage cars often require repairs. Prepare to make these repairs yourself or pay a mechanic to make them for you.

3. Buy from a reputable seller. When buying a salvage car, it is important to buy from a reputable seller. This will help to ensure that you are getting a vehicle that has been properly inspected and that is in good condition.

How Can Auto Auction Mall Help?

Auto Auction Mall can help you in a number of ways when it comes to buying and selling salvage cars:

– Access to a wide selection of salvage cars: Auto Auction Mall has a large database of salvage cars from across the country. This means that you are more likely to find the make and model that you are looking for.

– Detailed vehicle information: We provide detailed information on each salvage car, including photos, damage reports, and vehicle history reports. This information can help you to make an informed decision about whether or not to purchase a particular vehicle.

– Expert assistance: We have a team of experts who can help you with the buying and selling process. They can answer your questions, provide guidance, and help you to find the best possible deal.

– Convenient and secure bidding process: Our platform offers a convenient and secure online bidding process. This allows you to bid on salvage cars from anywhere in the world.

Shipping services: We provide shipping services to help you get your car home, whether you are in or outside of the US.

Getting Started!

Looking for a great deal on a vehicle? Look no further than Auto Auction Mall, where you can find a wide selection of salvage cars at a fraction of the cost of clean-title vehicles. Whether you’re looking for a project car to fix up or a parts car to keep your current vehicle running, we’ve got something for you.

With our wide selection, detailed vehicle information, and expert assistance, you’re sure to find the perfect salvage car for your needs.

So what are you waiting for? Start browsing our listings today!