The thought of visiting a junkyard, or salvage yard, to look for used auto parts is distasteful to some people. It generates an image of dusty mountains of decaying cars that litter a massive yard of dirt. Looking for a part could take hours. But, those days are long gone. Today, junkyards track their inventory in databases. And while things may still be dusty, finding the parts you need is easy. Employees can check their inventory, saving you the hassle of hours spent looking. Plus, cars often arrive at the junkyard stripped down. They’re easily dismantled and the parts are placed together in groups.
Using The Hotline
All of the large junkyards use a system called a “Hotline.” If you call a junkyard and ask whether they carry a particular part, they’ll check their inventory database while you’re on the phone. If they do not get the part you need in their inventory junkyards in my area, they can use their Hotline to quickly check the inventories of neighboring junkyards. An instant tip in regards to the Hotline: ask the junkyard that is checking other yards what that particular part might have cost if they’d it in their inventory. You might be in a position to negotiate the cost with one other dealer.
How Much Can You Expect To Pay?
Remember that junkyards are much like swap meets in that most prices are negotiable. That is particularly true when you’re buying parts that are not in good condition. Look for a discount or give you a lower price. Junkyards will often agree just to maneuver the inventory. That being said, you are able to expect to cover nearly 1 / 2 of the cost of a new part. For instance, a water pump for a BMW 740i may cost $140 new. Expect to cover $70 (in cash) at the junkyard.
Buying used auto parts from the junkyard is really a much different experience today than it was years ago. It’s quick, convenient and cost effective. That being said, salvage yards aren’t perfect. Parts can be labeled incorrectly. When possible, take the part that you’re replacing with you to compare. It is in addition crucial to make sure the replacement will fit your vehicle properly. Remember, refunds are seldom offered at salvage yards. In the long run, visiting the junkyard can save time and money. But, use the tips above to approach them with the proper expectations.