Will Carmax Buy A Car That Doesn Run

When it comes to selling a car that doesn’t run, many people find themselves in a challenging situation. Carmax is a popular choice for selling cars in the United States, and their process is widely known for being quick and hassle-free. However, one question that comes to mind for individuals with inoperative vehicles is whether Carmax will buy such a car. In this article, we will explore this topic and provide essential information to help you understand the Carmax policies regarding non-running vehicle purchases.

Important Outline

Carmax: A Brief Overview

Carmax is the largest used car retailer in the United States, offering its customers a simple, transparent, and stress-free way to buy and sell cars. Their no-haggle pricing policy and a range of financial services have gained them a reputation as a reliable and convenient way to purchase or sell vehicles of various makes and models.

Carmax’s Car Buying Policy

Carmax purchases vehicles from individuals, either through their store locations or using their online “We’ll Buy Your Car” form. They will conduct an appraisal of your vehicle, considering factors like market demand, retail price, vehicle history, and condition. After a thorough evaluation, they will provide an offer that’s valid for seven days.

Non-Running Cars and Carmax

While Carmax primarily seeks to purchase vehicles in good running condition, it is worth noting that they do not have a strict policy against buying non-running cars. The key factor is whether the vehicle still holds enough value to make it a worthwhile purchase for them.

However, it’s important to remember that the value of a non-running car will generally be much lower than that of a functioning one. Each case is unique and will depend on the vehicle’s make, age, mileage, and overall condition. If your car has significant damage or excessive wear and tear, it’s possible that Carmax may decline to make an offer.

Preparing Your Non-Running Car for Carmax

Before bringing your non-running car to Carmax, it’s a good idea to disclose relevant information about the vehicle. Honesty and transparency will help ensure an accurate evaluation and save both you and the Carmax appraiser valuable time. Provide any pertinent details such as known mechanical issues, accident history, and the reason your car isn’t running.

Alternative Options for Selling a Non-Running Car

If, after appraisal, Carmax decides not to purchase your non-running car, you still have other options for selling it. Some of these options include:

1. Selling to a private buyer: This may be more time-consuming and require some negotiation, but you may find someone interested in your non-running car for parts or restoration.

2. Selling to a local junkyard or salvage yard: They often purchase non-running vehicles and may offer you cash based on the weight and value of scrap metal.

3. Donating your car to a charity: Some charities accept non-running vehicles, often using them for parts, with the added bonus of providing you with a potential tax deduction.

In conclusion, Carmax does not have a strict policy against buying non-running cars. However, their decision to purchase your inoperative vehicle will be based on the vehicle’s overall value and its potential profitability. If you find that Carmax isn’t interested in buying your non-functioning car, consider exploring the alternative options outlined above.

Step by Step Guide

Step 1: Research and Gather Information

Begin by researching and gathering relevant information about your non-running car. This includes its make, model, year, and any factors that may impact its value, such as accident history or previous repairs.

Step 2: Contact Carmax

Reach out to your local Carmax and inquire about their process for appraising a non-running vehicle. Make sure to share essential information about the car’s condition and be upfront about the fact that it’s not operational.

Step 3: Schedule an Appraisal Appointment

If Carmax is open to evaluating your non-running car, schedule an appointment with one of their appraisers. They will inspect the vehicle and assess its overall value. Be prepared to present any necessary documentation, including the title and registration.

Step 4: Review the Offer (If Applicable)

If the Carmax appraiser decides that your non-running car is worth purchasing, they will provide you with an offer. Keep in mind that this offer will be valid for seven days. Take your time to review the proposal and consider whether it meets your expectations.

Step 5: Accept or Decline the Offer

After carefully reviewing the offer, decide whether or not you wish to move forward with the sale. If you accept Carmax’s offer, complete the necessary paperwork, hand over the keys, and finalize the transaction.

Step by Step Guide With Bullet Point

1. Research and gather information about your non-running car.
2. Contact your local Carmax to discuss the appraisal process.
3. Schedule an appraisal appointment with a Carmax appraiser.
4. Review the offer provided by Carmax (if applicable).
5. Accept or decline the offer and complete the sale.

Pros and Cons


– Carmax offers a straightforward and hassle-free buying process.
– They provide no-haggle pricing for a stress-free transaction.
– Selling to Carmax can save time compared to finding a private buyer.
– Carmax handles all necessary paperwork.


– Carmax may not be interested in buying a non-running car, depending on its value.
– You may receive a lower offer for your non-running vehicle compared to other selling methods.
– For some, the process of appraising and selling a car can still be time-consuming.


How long does the appraisal process take at Carmax?

The appraisal process typically takes 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the vehicle’s condition and documentation requirements.

What if I have an outstanding loan on my non-running car?

Carmax can still buy your car, but you must pay off the remaining balance before completing the sale. They will work with your lender to facilitate the payoff process.

Can I sell my non-running car to Carmax without a title?

No, you must have a valid, clean title to sell your car to Carmax. If you’ve lost the title, you’ll need to obtain a duplicate from your local Department of Motor Vehicles before proceeding.


Carmax can be a potential option for selling your non-running car, but their willingness to buy such a vehicle depends on its overall value and potential profitability. If Carmax chooses not to purchase your non-running vehicle, consider alternative options like private sales, junkyards, or car donations. By following the provided step-by-step guide and remaining transparent about your car’s condition, you’ll be well-equipped to navigate the process and potentially sell your non-running car successfully.

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