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Biggest Challenges of Scrapping an Electric Car And How To Avoid Them

In a world undergoing rapid climate change due to increasing greenhouse gas emissions, the demand for electric vehicles, or EVs, is constantly growing. This surge in the clean energy market is evident from the fact that 10% of global car sales were electric in 2021. In fact, future projections show a growth in the electric vehicle market size with a CAGR of 23.1% from 2022 to 2030 as people shift towards environmentally-friendly transport options in both developed and developing countries.

The success of electric vehicles and their increasing penetration in the market means that soon people will want to buy the latest models and look for ways to scrap their old electric cars for cash. Considering that electric vehicles are fundamentally different from conventional ones, this could pose a scrap yard challenge without the correct knowledge on how to safely dispose of electric cars and their parts.

To help overcome this challenge, the following guide provides a comprehensive overview on how to scrap your old electric car in a safe and secure manner so that you can avoid any potential mistakes and also make a good amount of cash in the process.

Scrap an Electric Car

When scrapping an electric vehicle, the first thing that you need to know is that since it has an electric motor as opposed to an internal combustion engine, the scrapping method is going to be different. That being said, in case you want to replace your electric car because you want a new model, or your insurance company has determined that repairing it is going to cost you more than the overall value of the car, you should have a good working knowledge about the basics of scrapping your old electric car.

The first thing you want to do is prepare your car to be scrapped. This involves having the certificate of title, also known as the pink slip so that you can identify yourself as the legal owner of the car. Keep in mind that some scrap yards are likely to charge you an extra fee in case you fail to provide the title of the car.

The next step involves clearing your car of personal possessions or artifacts and cleaning it thoroughly from the inside and out. Make sure to check all compartments and dispose of any material that doesn’t form a part of the car, such as seat covers and other paraphernalia.

Once your car is ready to be scrapped, you will need to do some research to find an electric car junkyard and verify that they are an authorized treatment facility for electric vehicles. It is best to shortlist at least 3 to 4 scrap yards and speak to them about how much they will offer you for your vehicle and the steps they take to safely dispose of the car.

Additionally, always ensure that the electric car junkyard dealer provides you with a certificate of destruction for your vehicle. Remember that most scrap yards will also offer for your car to be picked up from your residence free of charge.

A pro tip is to carry out an appraisal of your car so that you know its true value prior to scrapping it. This can help you negotiate a better price with the electric car junkyard dealer and ensure that you get the most bang for your buck. You can obtain the true worth of your car either by using online tools or by going to a trusted and professional mechanic.

Recycling an Electric Car

Generally, the best way to dispose of your old electric car is by scrapping it to save money and help the environment. These electric car junk yards take care of your vehicle by safely and securely recycling the different parts and give you cash for your car.

The valuable materials of an EV which can be recycled include electric vehicle batteries which contain precious metals such as lithium, nickel, manganese, and cobalt, and other car components such as the exterior frame of the car, built-in GPS system, tires and rims, air conditioning unit, doors, mirrors, windows, and windshields.

It is important to keep in mind that the recycling process of EV batteries means either selling it to a scrapyard or an authorized retailer who may have their own energy-intensive and specialized recycling equipment or may forward it to treatment facilities for recycling per environmental and safety rules and regulations.

The Challenge of Scrapping Electric Cars

Image by Gaertringen from Pixabay

As an EV owner who is considering parting with their beloved car, you may be tempted to scrap it yourself for parts. However, many people don’t realize that this may actually be quite dangerous considering the many challenges of scraping EVs. This is why it is recommended that EV owners seek out electric vehicle scrap yards in order to dispose of their old electric cars for cash. Considering the growing car scrapping business, you can now find several reputable companies that will offer you upfront cash for your car and even answer the most common cash-for-cars questions for sellers.

Let us take a look at some of the common challenges of scrapping electric cars that you can definitely avoid if you choose to sell your scrap electric car to an electric car junkyard for cash.

Electric Shock

When scrapping an electric car, you need to be mindful of getting an electric shock. This is because EV batteries tend to be quite powerful and if you are not properly trained and cautious when handling and removing the different electric car components, there is a possibility of getting a seriously harmful electric shock. Remember that it is possible to get electrocuted from the EV batteries even if it is disconnected since they tend to have up to 800 volts of electricity still flowing through them. Additionally, once the battery has been removed, care needs to be taken in transporting it in the right packaging and storing it properly, preferably in places that have adequate ventilation and space.

Fire Hazard

The batteries used in electric vehicles are not only powerful enough to give you a shock but also carry a fire risk that is usually difficult to put out in the rare instance that it catches fire. Trained and certified personnel, however, can handle the battery in a way that minimizes fire hazards.

Toxic Gas and Chemicals

Removing EV batteries also requires using the right kind of specialist equipment in order to avoid the toxic smoke from highly reactive hydrogen fluoride that can result in breathing and respiratory issues. Additionally, it is also possible to get skin burns from harmful chemicals when handling batteries.

Powerful Magnets

Electric cars also have very powerful magnets that can disrupt and endanger unprepared or amateur operators and mechanics and can cause potential issues for people with medical devices such as pacemakers.

How To Properly Dispose of EV Batteries

Photo by Mike B on Pexels

Generally, the biggest challenge of scrapping an electric vehicle concerns disposing of electric car batteries. This is because EVs have lithium-ion batteries that power the engine, and have an average warranty of 8 years and a lifespan ranging between 10 to 20 years. So whether your EV batteries are nearing their lifetime and you are looking to replace them, or your car is totaled and you want to get rid of it, it is pertinent that you learn how to responsibly dispose of EV batteries.

When disposing of electric car batteries, you need to verify whether they are functional or not. Keep in mind that batteries are still categorized as functional even if they have a reduced capacity or require frequent charging. In most cases, many old lithium-ion batteries have around 70% to 80% of their original capacity. In these situations, you may want to consider repurposing the EV batteries so that they can be reused. Examples include re-using the batteries for solar panels or repurposing some of their components for use in other high-powered batteries. You can also disassemble the battery and take out its high-functioning materials and sell it for parts either online or in specialist stores.

However, remember that you should consult a professional who knows how to safely and securely disassemble an EV battery before embarking on this project.

Alternatively, if you want to get rid of a dead battery, you have two options. The first is to get in contact with your car manufacturer and ask them if they have dedicated pick-up points or drop-off zones for EV battery recycling. The downside is that not every city will have these services. This brings us to the second option, which involves getting in touch with an electric car junkyard in your local area that will take the EV batteries off of your hands and give you instant cash for it all while significantly reducing the overall recycling costs.

If you are planning to scrap your old electric vehicle, you don’t even need to worry about individually getting rid of the EV battery as the electric car junkyard will also take care of disposing of electric car batteries for you. It is best to do your due diligence and inquire about the steps that the eclectic car scrap yard dealer takes in order to get rid of the EV batteries and whether they comply with rules and regulations.

The Bottom Line

Scrapping an electric vehicle is a completely different ball game compared to gasoline and diesel cars. Considering the many challenges and hazards of scrapping EVs, it is best to consult an eclectic car junkyard and sell your EV for cash so that professional and trained individuals can safely scrap your car. This will also lower the overall cost of recycling as electric car junk yards follow the requisite regulatory process to safely scrap your EV. It will also allow you to make quick cash which you can put towards buying your next dream car.


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