salvage title

Life of a Car Before Shipping: How Did It Get a Salvage title?

EasyHaul ships thousands of salvage vehicles every year, both domestically and internationally. Many of them aren’t manufactured anymore, however, more vehicles are added to salvage car auctions all the time. So, where do all those salvage vehicles come from?

Usually, a car receives a salvage title after it got into a collision, was damaged by a natural disaster, or was stolen. An insurance company then decides if the vehicle worth the cost of repairs and, if not, deems it as a total loss.

If you want to know how vehicles get their salvage title before you buy them from an auction and ship with EasyHaul, read this article.


Getting into an accident is the most common reason for a vehicle to get a salvage title and end up at a salvage yard. After a claim that a car got into a collision is made, an insurance company needs to evaluate the cost of repairs. If this cost exceeds 50-80% (depending on the US state) of a vehicle’s market value, the insurance company deems it as a total loss.

Different states apply their own rules for the total loss calculations. For example, in New York, a vehicle is deemed a total loss if repair costs exceed 75% of its retail value before the accident. In Nevada, repair costs should make up more than 65% of its pre-damage retail value.


Sometimes, vehicles are damaged by natural disasters, such as floods, hails, hurricanes, and earthquakes.

Flood is the most common of them, and it also is the most critical one. The damage caused by water is often invisible, but its consequences may appear years later. Also, flooded cars usually look good, but there’s a high-risk to buy a non-drivable car and waste money. The worst thing here is that you may find it out only after a vehicle is delivered to you.

Fire damage is not always from a natural disaster. A car can catch fire from the inside because of an electrical malfunction or a fuel system failure. We don’t recommend shipping burned vehicles, as they can break down into pieces during transportation.


If a car was stolen, it usually ends up with a total loss claim to an insurance company. After the owner and the company agree on the current value of a car, the owner gets compensation and loses ownership rights to it.

If the vehicle is found after filling up the claim, the insurance company can sell it through a salvage auction.

Other reasons

Some vehicles you can find on salvage car auctions are sold under the Repossession title. These cars aren’t actually salvaged but repossessed from debtors for non-payment.

Also, a vehicle can end up with a salvage title after being used for leasing purposes or as a former rental.

Some cars with high mileage and light damage can fall under the Remarketing Division and be sold from a salvage auction together with other vehicles.

Ship with EasyHaul

If you already bought a salvage car and now you need to ship it, you can rely on EasyHaul. We specialize in shipping cars, SUVs, trucks, boats, and other vehicles across the US and internationally. If you have questions concerning how shipping works with EasyHaul, feel free to contact our support team at [email protected]. They will gladly assist you.

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