Finding replacement parts for a Buick can be pretty easy at a salvage yard. Now I’m talking about finding parts for 1925 Buick Master Six Series, but parts manufactured on vehicles after 1980 are pretty common. While you can find Buick’s at your local auto junkyard, there are some exclusive Buick salvos. In the article below I’ll share how the Buick junkyards near me operate, share salvaging advice, and help you find some Buick’s near you.
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Buick is part of General Motors (GM) and the Detroit News has said that “Buick has been in the Top 10 of J.D. Power’s vehicle reliability study for more than 15 years”. So that speaks well to the quality of parts that we can pull of these junked vehicles. If you are having trouble finding Buick salvage yards, you can also try looking for GM salvage yards.
How Do the Buick Junkyards Near Me Operate
Buick junkyards operate like any other local business, with a business model similar to that of a thrift shop. In this case though they purchase junked automobiles and sell off the functioning parts. These salvage yard businesses serve the vehicle recycling industry and help reduce energy and the use of natural resources. Of course they also serve the consumer as they provide a great way to get second hand parts cheap.
There are a few different kinds of auto junkyards. Some are self service where you pay a few bucks to enter and pull parts off vehicles yourself. Other lots pull parts for you and because of that tend to charge a little more. Then of course there are online junkyards where you can order used parts.
How Junkyards Get Buick’s in Their Inventory
Buick’s will end up a junkyard for many different reasons. Some of the most common reasons are an owner junks the vehicle, an insurance company junks one after a total loss claim, or the salvo purchases a junk vehicle at auction. Most of the time the vehicles are not running or have been in significant accidents, which is why they are junked.
How Buick Salvage Yards Process Their Vehicles
Junk automobiles don’t go straight out to the yard for pick and pull when they arrive. There are some environmental standards that salvos must adhere to in order to maintain their business license. Additionally there is a process of pre-pulling parts to ensure the yard can maximize their profit potential.
The environmental regulations dictate that the junkyard drain hazardous fluids that can get into the local ground water. This means they need to drain fluids like gas, oil, coolant, Freon, and other toxic fluids. Some of the fluids like coolant and wiper fluid will get rebottled and resold.
Most junkyards then pre-pull parts. Typically parts that corrode fast like batteries, starters, alternators, etc are taken out and sold online or in a warehouse. If the transmission or engine is worth salvaging they may pull those as well. The Buick junkyards near me, will pull engines and/or transmissions, rebuild them, and sell them with a warranty.
How the Buick Salvage Yard Near Me is Arranged
Buick salvage yards will vary in the layout. Some yards are mixed like Buick and Pontiac junkyards. In my experience there isn’t much organization at these yards. You will find Buick’s mixed by year and model. They are usually in rows with a wide aisle. There are yards, that have no organizational structure and all the cars mixed up and haphazardly placed about.
At some places it is hard to find the parts you need for your model and year. For Buick’s these are the most commonly found vehicles that may still have salvageable parts:
- 1970’s: GSX, Regal, Rivera, Estate
- 1980’s: Skylark, LeSabre, Rivera, Electra, Skyhawk, Reatta
- 1990’s: Roadmaster, Estate, Skylark, Park Avenue, Rivera
- 2000’s: LeSabre, Rendezvous, Enclave, Encore Regal
Certainly not suggesting you won’t find other models or even 1960’s or older vehicles. Just mentioning above what is the most common. If you are looking for parts for a 70’s or earlier Buick, the choice is often limited and so is the quality. You are not gonna just walk into your local junkyard and find quality parts for a 1948 Roadmaster.
Since organization varies from yard to yard, I like to either call ahead or check to see if the junkyard has a database. Some yards maintain an online inventory so you can check to see if a vehicle is on the lot. Knowing vehicles you can swap parts with also helps. If I have to call I like to ask specific questions like, ” Do you have any passenger side panels and doors for 2000 Buick LaSabre and if not what year 200 vehicles do you have from the GM G platform”?
What Kind of Used Buick Parts Can You Find?
You can find any kind of part at one of the junk yards. This includes mirrors, doors, engines, transmissions fenders, tires, starters, alternators, exhausts, dashboards and all their components, seats, body panels, etc. There are also parts you should never buy from a junkyard.
It’s possible you may even find newish Buick parts. Sometimes the previous title holder will try and get an automobile to run by throwing parts at it. If the job isn’t successful they junk the vehicle and leave the parts on.
If you really want to be successful as a Buick parts picker though the better you know the brand, the more parts you can find. What I mean is that if you know what years GM used parts across other makes, years, and models, you are not limited to just your year, make, and model.
What Happens After a Automobile Gets Stripped?
When a vehicle has all it’s functioning parts stripped, the next steps vary depending on the salvo. A well maintained yard will crush the vehicle and sell what’s left for scrap metal. This makes more room on the lot and helps the junkyard get the last bit of money out of the junker. Not all yards do this practice though. Some junk yards leave the vehicles to rust in the lot.
Buying Used Buick Parts at Junkyards
Pros of Buying Used Buick Parts at a Junk Yard
Used parts cost significantly less then new parts. You can save 60% to 75% off the cost of buying parts new. Common prices you can find are engines for under $500, doors for $40, batteries for $15, and alternators for $20. Prices vary by yard. Since prices are low, you can also buy some extra parts and sell them online yourself to make a few extra bucks.
Another great thing about used Buick parts is you can get OEM parts that were installed and assembled in the old Detroit factory. You won’t get that kind of quality or originality with after market pieces. Sometimes even seeing how a factory installed part is attached is also helpful when doing a replacement on an older vehicle model.
Not all yards do this, but some offer a warranty on parts. You can pay a few extra dollars and get a warranty. This usually comes with a 30 day part exchange or junkyard credit. This is good to purchase if you are buying something that costs more or is mechanical like a used engine or transmission.
Cons of Buying Used Buick Parts
There is also cons to buying used parts and the biggest one is potential for low quality. Even if you visually inspect a part or physically test it, there can be hidden damage. You can’t look at every part and see that it has reached it’s end of life.
Buick Junkyards Near Me Conclusion
Junkyards are by far the best place to save money on Buick parts. If you are doing an old restoration, in some cases a Buick salvage yard may be your only option. While you may not have an exclusive Buick junkyard nearby, you can find plenty of these GM manufactured autos on any local salvo. Over the years I have seen so many classic Buicks on these yards and the more we all can bring back to life the better. Save some money, save the Buick, and save the environment…a win, win, win. That is what I have learned from the Buick junkyards near me.