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  • Ryan Patterson

Should I Service My Car Before I Sell It?

The factors that need to be considered when selling your car are numerous, and one of the most pressing is whether or not you should service your car before you sell it. This decision largely depends on the condition of your car and your intent in selling it. If your car is non-functional and you intend to sell it for parts or scrap, then having it serviced is unnecessary. However, if your car is still road-worthy and you intend to sell it to a private buyer, dealership, or even a scrapyard, then having your car serviced will increase its value and your potential profit.

car service and upkeep

Servicing Your Car: Important Steps

Servicing your car before you sell it means ensuring it both looks great and works well when considering its age and mileage. It also means investing some money in aesthetic improvements and repairs, without spending too much money and risking a healthy profit when you sell.

Considering the average lifespan of a car is approximately 10 years, it’s a good idea to service your car when you are selling around the 5-6 year mark. Doing so towards the back end of your car’s lifespan may be a waste of money, as the age and mileage alone may be enough to ward off potential buyers. In this case, doing anything other than the most basic of cosmetic or functional repairs may not be worth it.

When servicing your car, here are some things you will want to consider:


Making sure your car is squeaky clean, both inside and out will make it as attractive as possible to potential buyers. Wash your car thoroughly on the outside, making sure to pay attention to detail, like polishing windshields, mirrors, and the interior of the hubcaps. Break out your vacuum and make sure you get all the dust off your dashboard and give your seats a deep clean. Remove all visible stains with a stain remover, and make sure everything from the floor mats to the carpets is mud-free. Doing this yourself will cost you nothing but time and the price of detergents and cleaners!

Full Service Your Car

Bringing your car to a garage or dealership for a full-service check is another option to consider when selling your car. Here, a mechanic will inspect every aspect of your car, from the engine to electronics to tires, and provide repairs if needed. Additionally, their written attestation will provide proof of your car’s condition to potential buyers. Although somewhat costly, spending a few hundred dollars to add a few thousand to your car’s final sales price is a good investment. At this stage in car servicing, it may also be a good idea to take care of any nicks or scratches in your car’s finish at the garage or a body shop.

Collect Your Paperwork

Collecting all your car’s paperwork, like proof of ownership, repair records, and most recent full-service check, provides proof of your car’s condition and justifies its price to potential buyers. Before you begin the process of selling your car, you may also consider getting a free valuation, which will give you a credible reference to your car’s worth.

For more information on car service or for any further questions, contact Auto Scrap today!

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