How do I properly dispose of or sell an old, non-running car?

For when you're ready to give up on your old ride
by Niky Tamayo | Sep 28, 2018
PHOTO: Paulo Subido

This arrived in our inbox recently. Do you share the same problem?

Hi Top Gear Philippines,

 Meron po kaming Toyota Corolla 1994 GLi na hindi na umaandar. Marami na din pong hindi gumagana na parts like busina, radio, aircon, signal lights, at power windows. Kumbaga 2/10  condition na. Pero sabi po ng mga kuya ko, maganda daw po makina nun. Paano po namin madi-dispose ito? Gusto po namin maialis sa garahe yung Corolla para yung ginagamit na kotse ang mai-park sa loob at hindi naka-kalat sa kalsada. Thanks in advance.


In English: Hi, we have a Toyota Corolla 1994 Gli that isn’t running. A lot of parts don’t work, like the horn, radio, A/C, signal lights and power windows. In essence, its condition is 2/10. But my elder brothers say the engine is very good. How do we get rid of this car? We want to get it out of the garage so the car we do use can be parked inside. Thanks in advance.


Well, proper disposal depends on how much you want to get rid of the car and how little money you expect back from it. A working 1994 Corolla Gli is worth some P80,000 to P100,000 at this point in time, but since yours is in such poor condition, don’t expect it to sell for that much, even if it is running.

 You can repair it before selling, but best do your homework first. Is the paint in good condition? Paint jobs have gone up in price over the years, and I doubt you can get anything good for less than 20,000 at this point. Then add a few thousand for new power window motors, signal lights (hoping nothing is wrong with the wiring harness) and horn. I can’t even venture to guess what’s wrong with your radio. A/C trouble will cost you a pretty penny. Set aside P10,000 to P15,000 just in case. And the engine, if nothing else is wrong with it, will need new oil and plugs, and you’ll have to fork out some P3,000 to P4,000 for a new battery.

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 Finally, is it registered? If not, you could up the price to the 80k to 100k range, but you’ll be spending for that. Find out how much and see if it’s worth your time to do so.

 If the numbers don’t add up, tender an offer for the non-working vehicle either in online selling groups or to friends to see what you can get. If you can sell it for at least half of the price of a working GLi, consider yourself lucky. But be warned, lower-end carbureted Corollas already sell in the P30,000 to P50,000 range, so it’s going to be tough selling a non-runner when buyers can already get a Corolla for half the price of a running GLi.

 If you don’t get bites, you can part out the car, which might get you more in the end, but which will result in you having to hold onto the shell for much longer than you first intended. And possibly having to find a junk shop that will take it off your hands. Just the engine, alternator, starter, transmission and computer box can net you around 35k if sold individually. Windows, seats and body panels will also be worth some coin. But do you have the patience and time to strip the car and wait for offers?

 It’s never easy disposing of an old automobile. It’s doable, but you either stand to lose money on the deal, or lose time waiting. Whichever of the two ways--or three, if you consider restoring it and using it--you go will depend, ultimately, on how far gone the car really is and how badly you want to get rid of it.

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PHOTO: Paulo Subido
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