Should I Donate or Sell My Junk Car?


When it’s time to get rid of your old car, make sure you get the most cash for it. Did you know you can sell your junk car for cash or donate your car to charity?

You may have heard about making a car donation for tax credit and it made you think about the hunk of metal parked in your driveway. Donating your car to charity is an easy way to support a good cause without lowering the balance of your bank account. Consider the following to help you decide which option is right for you.

  • Sell your car to an individual seller – This method requires the most time and planning, but could result in the highest payout. Private-party sales allow you to control the selling process and get you the closest price to true market value for your old car. You could use a portion of – or all of - the payout to make a charitable donation.

  • Sell your car to a junk car buying service – If you have a junk car on your hands, turning to junk car buyer like Pull-A-Part could be the easiest way to get a quick payout with very little time commitment. You’ll often receive between $200-$500 for your junk car and you could donate a portion of - or all of - the payout to a charity of your choice.

  • Donate your car to charity – This method requires the least amount of time, and will result in donating the full value of your vehicle - not a portion - to charity. Contact the charity you would like to donate your car to, and often they will come pick it up.

Now that you know your options, if you’re still considering donating your old car to charity there are a few more things you should understand before moving forward with the process.


You can get big savings on your taxes if you donate a junk car and include it in your charitable contribution deduction. The amount you get to deduct from your taxes depends on how the charity uses your donation:

  1. Charity Uses/Donates Your Car to Someone In Need

    If the charity takes your vehicle and uses it for their services or donates it to someone in need, you may claim a tax deduction for the fair market value of your donated vehicle. To determine the fair market value of your vehicle, use a free service such as Kelly Blue Book. Be sure to save the donation documentation the charity provides to you.

  2. Charity Sells Your Car for Cash

    Oftentimes charities sell donated vehicles at used car auctions or to junk car services like Pull-A-Part. They use the selling value to support their organization. If this is the case, you will be able to file a tax claim for the amount of money the charity sold your car for. The charity you choose to make the vehicle donation to will provide you with documentation of your car’s selling price. Keep this on-hand for filing your taxes.

If you’re ready to learn even more, check out A Donor’s Guide to Vehicle Donation published by the IRS.

Whether it’s your time or a financial donation, we applaud your spirit to give back.

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