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Anyone here mess with salvage title cars? It seems like they'd be a pretty good deal, rebuilt and all. Or is a car that needed a salvage title beyond very good repairs? Would it be a nice dependable car for a high schooler for a few years?
 

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I for one would never mess with a salvage title car. When a unibody car gets in a pretty harsh accident, sure they can strighten it sometimes, but it can weaken the structure. There have been cases believe it or not where someone bought a car (it was a Honda Accord I think) and later found out it was two halves of two other cars (front and back) that had been welded together. I wouldn't touch one no matter how good a deal it sounds.
 

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i would disagree because there are cars like for instance the one that TFC has rebuilt that was in an accident he fixed it and now its perfect..(i am unsure if it was considered salvage though)...like I am going to buy a salvage camaro and restore it...it all matters on how bad the damage was and how it is or was fixed.
 

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I would only buy a car with a Salvage Title if you know the entire history of the car, this is my daily driver:



It has a salvage title. I was in a small accident a few years ago and did about $3,500 damage to the car, my insurance felt the car was not worth fixing and totaled it because at the time it was 15 years old. I argued that it only had 48,000 miles at that time, so I took the money and fixed the car for about 3,000. But now I have salvage title, but I don't plan on selling it for a long time, so it was worth it to me.

If you are buying a salvage title car, realize that the insurance company will want to inspect the car before they will insure it and will pay you less on a total loss.

Charles
 

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Find out why it was totalled! If it was destroyed in a flood or fire, run away! If it was in a wreck you've got a better chance. Plus an older car will be totalled with less over all damage, so you might get a better deal here (see Mathwiz's post above) To total out a newer car, you are talking some major damage. look closely at it and make sure it was repaired right (see below) Mathwiz also makes an excellent point on knowing what the service history is on it as well.

find out who rebuilt it! this makes the difference. A poor quality rebuilder will give you headaches beyond belief, but if it was done by a good body shop, there should be minimal problems. A skilled body shop can make it pretty much good as new, but a half ass job will give you problems and could possibly be unsafe in another accident. A good reputable rebuilder will warranty the work on it as well.

If you are going to buy this car, be prepared to stick with it, as it is going to be worth much less than a nonsalvage title when you try to sell it or trade it. Good luck

AJ
 

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2 years ago my son called me and said he found a great deal on a Ford Ranger ,, sounded too good to be true,, it was like 3 years old for somewhere around 3500 bucks miles sounded right,, without looking at it i said if you like it buy it, he did,, and its been a living hell ever since,,, salvage title,, frames bent ,, I kinda got it aligned so at least it goes stright,, now hes just waiting for it to die,,,
its like anything else some are good some are bad,, really look it over carefull before buying
 

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theres nothing wrong with buying a salvage car it also depends who does it, not frame wise i maen paint, bodywork, cause they all have to do a frame inspection on the machine and it has to be a 100% straight when they are fixed, most of the time the frames and sometime not the frame the front apren are bent or pushed in a few inches anyway, its not like the car is bent in have, then it would be irrepairable and only good for parts, look at all those shows overhaulin and so there pretty much patched rotten frames off old cars and most of the time cut major frame panels are cut and welded back on and everyone ends up lovin it lol so its like i said it all depends on who does it. lata
 

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Say what???? Not sure WHAT you are trying to say. ............... Anyways, I was saying that when a unibody car is in a bad accident....like alot of body damage, it doesn't matter how much they straighten it, it will never be as strong. Some salvagers are rebuilding cars that should be scrapped due to safety reasons. Not just my opinion, I've seen write ups and such in the past on this isssue. So what some people are saying is that you would buy a car that was welded together from a couple of others if it was cheap enough?
 

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this is one of those "yes and no, it depends" questions. A lot of it depends on how bad the damage was to total the car. When a car is "totaled out" its because the repairs will cost more than what the car is worth. My wife's friend used to drive a 1991 Audi up until this winter when some schmuck took a turn in a parking lot too fast and hit her. The damage didn't look too bad, but since the car was only worth a grand or two, it didn't take much to total it. On the other hand, if you see something relatively new with a salvage title, you might want to look a little more closely at it. I know that here in NY, the DMV has to go right thru the entire vehicle in order to issue a salvage title. Unlike a standard safety & emissions inspection. If you're considering a car with a salvage title, look very carefully. There are some body shops that can work wonders and then others that do crap work to get it back together. The caravan I had before the trep, I swear it probably should have had a salvage title. Found out later after owning it that there was damage underneath to the front suspension cradle from the previous owner's accident. Wasn't cheap to replace either.
 

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froggy81500 said:
this is one of those "yes and no, it depends" questions. A lot of it depends on how bad the damage was to total the car. When a car is "totaled out" its because the repairs will cost more than what the car is worth. My wife's friend used to drive a 1991 Audi up until this winter when some schmuck took a turn in a parking lot too fast and hit her. The damage didn't look too bad, but since the car was only worth a grand or two, it didn't take much to total it. On the other hand, if you see something relatively new with a salvage title, you might want to look a little more closely at it. I know that here in NY, the DMV has to go right thru the entire vehicle in order to issue a salvage title. Unlike a standard safety & emissions inspection. If you're considering a car with a salvage title, look very carefully. There are some body shops that can work wonders and then others that do crap work to get it back together. The caravan I had before the trep, I swear it probably should have had a salvage title. Found out later after owning it that there was damage underneath to the front suspension cradle from the previous owner's accident. Wasn't cheap to replace either.
Also realize many salvage titles are going to be one or the other, insurance just totaled it out to save cost of paying for repairs or the car is just junk insurance companies are totalling cars more and more it seems to me unless the damage is minor or the car is very 'new'. The other end is the nightmare bent frame, flooded etc, if you can check the history of the car or are certain that the damage is superficial it would be a good deal, if not don't bother.

You would also have to check out your state's policies on salvage cars, IE can you import a salvage car from a state where a salvaged car is not allowed to be put back on the road in your state if your state allows them to come back? I don't know all the state laws/regulations but have seen a few states, cannot remember which, where once a car gets a salvage title it cannot be put back on the road in that state. Others let you bring it back but only if an authorized shop has done the work and then the dmv will do whatever testing/inspection they see fit before letting it on the road.

My thought is if you can get salvage car, consider it a parts car, unless you can verify that whatever damage to it is 'easily' repairable.

So what some people are saying is that you would buy a car that was welded together from a couple of others if it was cheap enough?
I would buy a car pieced together from a couple of others IF I educated myself enough to recognize or trust that the work done, which I would imagine, would include additional supports to strengthen the 'chopped' frame back together. If I didn't educate myself or get additional opinions on the 'repair' of a frame cut in half I wouldn't touch it, unless it was going to be a show car that I trailered around and drove only for shows.
 

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My last TBird was not a salvage car, but it did have the next step up "branding" on the title: "Rebuilt/Restored". I had it on a frame straightener immediately after I bought it, and it was fine. The car (back in 1995) cost me a total of $1350 which included all the parts to rebuild it. So...I'd have to say it depends on the damage and work to get it road-worthy...and of course...how much the car is worth to you personally.
 

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windowpane said:
I don't know all the state laws/regulations but have seen a few states, cannot remember which, where once a car gets a salvage title it cannot be put back on the road in that state.
The rest of th epost is good. I just quoted the part that is puzzling. What's the point of issuing a salvage title if the car cannot be put back on the road? that's the whole point of a salvage title, to restore it to roadworthy condition. Personally, I don't know anyone, or dealt with anyone who has bought a salvaged vehicle or restored one to get a salvage title. I know there's a body shop not too far from my work that is one of the best around here. Haven't had any work done there myself, but they've been around a long time and haven't ever heard anything bad about them. Anyway, awhile back when I was car shopping, shortly before getting the trep, I spotted a couple year old Chevy Silverado ext cab for sale like dirt cheap. Around $10K or so for 2000 something. I read a little closer and saw that is was the body shop selling it. Salvage title? I never did go and check it out, drove by it once and it looked really nice. But that's the thing, shops can make them look really nice on the outside, its the structure that matters.
 

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My car (the one in my sig) has a salvage title. The guy that I bought it from buys Probes and rebuilds them. The only major problems were a crumpled hood, new light assemblies, new front bumper and a repaint. As some have stated earlier, the older a car is, the easier it is to total out when involved in an accident. I've been enjoying it for almost two years now with nary a problem (other than the fact that it loves to drink oil, but that's not related. :D) The only problem with rebuilding a salvage car yourself is that the requirements to get a salvage title can be very stringent. In AL, at least, you have to have a rebuilder's license (which itself requires you to have a lot of insurance), you have to rebuild the car to exactly what it was originally. You can't just slap on a used blue hood, black front end and green light lids on a red car and call it a day. I'm not sure how other states are, but you really need to check into it before you try it.
 

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froggy81500 said:
The rest of th epost is good. I just quoted the part that is puzzling. What's the point of issuing a salvage title if the car cannot be put back on the road? that's the whole point of a salvage title, to restore it to roadworthy condition. Personally, I don't know anyone, or dealt with anyone who has bought a salvaged vehicle or restored one to get a salvage title. I know there's a body shop not too far from my work that is one of the best around here. Haven't had any work done there myself, but they've been around a long time and haven't ever heard anything bad about them. Anyway, awhile back when I was car shopping, shortly before getting the trep, I spotted a couple year old Chevy Silverado ext cab for sale like dirt cheap. Around $10K or so for 2000 something. I read a little closer and saw that is was the body shop selling it. Salvage title? I never did go and check it out, drove by it once and it looked really nice. But that's the thing, shops can make them look really nice on the outside, its the structure that matters.
My mistake, I meant some cars are totaled and get something on the title can be junk, dismantled and in some instances salvage. They can be parted out or sold to another country, Mexico, and get fixed there just not in the US state they were deemed not roadworthy ever again.

see Junk, dismantled and salvage

http://www.carfax.com/Definitions/Glossary.cfm
 

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jossimbyr said:
My car (the one in my sig) has a salvage title. The guy that I bought it from buys Probes and rebuilds them. The only major problems were a crumpled hood, new light assemblies, new front bumper and a repaint. As some have stated earlier, the older a car is, the easier it is to total out when involved in an accident. I've been enjoying it for almost two years now with nary a problem (other than the fact that it loves to drink oil, but that's not related. :D) The only problem with rebuilding a salvage car yourself is that the requirements to get a salvage title can be very stringent. In AL, at least, you have to have a rebuilder's license (which itself requires you to have a lot of insurance), you have to rebuild the car to exactly what it was originally. You can't just slap on a used blue hood, black front end and green light lids on a red car and call it a day. I'm not sure how other states are, but you really need to check into it before you try it.
I imagine all the states are probably strigent, as something like this they should be. but then again, if you'd ever see some of the POS's driving around in the city where I grew up, you'd have to scratch your head and wonder. I guy I knew that died a few years back used to go around picking up junk. I gotta scan a couple of pics of his truck and post 'em. If his truck can be registered, man you could put anything on the road!!!
 
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