Auto junkyards present an awesome opportunity to get used parts cheap. The state of Utah has some awesome choices of yards. While Utah is a massive state in size, there are some junkyards that may be worth the drive to get what you need. Before you start your hunt for used auto parts in UT, you should be generally aware of how Utah junkyards operate, laws that govern junkyards, state taxes, and some tips for parts salvage specific to Utah. Below I will share everything you need to know as well as my experience with the automobile junkyards in Utah.

Map of Junkyards in Utah 

For  “junkyards in Utah” or “Salvage Yards in Utah”, see the map below…

How do Auto Junkyards in Utah Operate

All Junkyards in UT operate like any other local business. They are privately owned and not state owned like a landfill might be. Like any business in the state they are subject to the same tax laws, which is why you pay sales tax on used auto parts.

All junkyards in UT must be a state licensed dismantler and meet all the state ordinances. If the yard does more then salvage parts and also sells salvage title vehicles then they must also posses a Utah dealers license. Other then those two state requirements,they must adhere to specific law regarding protecting the environment and the handling of hazardous material.

Salvage Yards in UT as far as day to day operations go, work just like any other US junkyard. They purchase junk vehicles like cars, trucks, SUV’s, vans, etc and then they sell the used parts off of them. Vehicles come from different sources like insurance companies, private owners, businesses, tow truck companies, and salvage auctions. Some vehicles will be bought and either fixed, auctioned, or sold with a salvage title. Most vehicles will be sent to the yard for the public to pick parts off of them. Each yard has a few different nuances depending on their business model, but they are all a primary component of the vehicle recycling in the state.

Processing of Vehicles at a UT Junkyard

Before a vehicle can be sent out for pick and pull, it must go through some basic processing. This includes draining hazardous fluids and removing some high selling parts to protect them from deterioration and maintain their value. Parts they might pull are the battery, the alternator, the starter, and in some cases the motor and/or transmission. Some fluids like windshield wiper fluid and antifreeze will be rebottled and resold if it is clean.

Some yards will also then tag and label their vehicles for entering their data into an online database. This makes it easier for customers to search their inventory.

Types of Junkyards in UT

Utah is an enormous state featuring all kinds of different types of auto wrecking yards. At my last count of UT there was over 200 businesses that salvage, dismantle, recycle, scrap, or have some type of junkyard and recycling affiliation. While there are plenty of general auto junkers there are specialty yards for foreign autos, Jeeps, motorcycles, and others.

The state also features a lot of scrap yards and cash for car buyers. That creates a lot of opportunities to sell a junk vehicle. You can actually shop around and try and get the most money.

Various Salvage Yard Models in Utah

Salvage yards may operate with different business models in UT, Some are of the self service model, others are full service, there are hybrids, and there are also places that sell online only or via a warehouse.

Here is a general description of these salvage yard business models:

Parts Warehouses: These are junkyards that pull parts off vehicles and then sell them from a store or warehouse. In most cases they will also sell their used auto parts online. These business are very organized and label parts really well. Because they do the work up front to pull and label the parts, prices tend to be higher on average.

Self Service Yards: These are salvage yards that you pay small admin fee to walk the yard and then remove the parts you want from the vehicles. As the name, self service suggests, you bring your own tools and you do all the work. Depends on the yard will depend on how organized they are. In my experience with junkyards in Utah, these yards have lower quality older vehicles, but have cheaper prices.

Full Service: A full service yard is similar to a self service, except they pull the parts or at a minimum provide help. This often means a higher quality inventory available, but also a bit more expensive on prices. These places will have more newer inventory in better shape. These yards are good if you don’t have the skills or tools to do the part removal.

Popular Auto Junkyards in Utah

Each yard can have a different experience. It is not only about finding high quality used auto parts, but how you are treated. There are other things that may impact how you perceive a salvage such as the warranty/return policy, fair pricing, or the availability of tools like an engine hoist. When finding a salvage in UT you should consider location, inventory, quality, price, warranties, and customer service.

Utah is home to a popular junkyard franchise called: Pick-N-Pull and another one called Pull-N-Save. They are super popular amongst pickers.

Here are a few popular junkyards with 4.5+ star ratings in Utah:

  • Rowland Auto Wrecking in West Valley City
  • Country Auto Salvage in Aurora
  • Dwight’s Auto Wrecking in Sigurd
  • Japanese Auto Parts and Wrecking in Lehi
  • Southwest Auto Recycling in Washington
  • Dixie Auto Salvage, Inc in Washington
  • Pull N Save in Salt Lake City

Junkyards in Utah

Selling a Junked Vehicle in UT

If you have a junked vehicle in Utah that you are looking to get money for, your local junkyards will be an option. You should first consider a private sale, then a junkyard second.

To learn about how to junk a vehicle, read this first. Most salvages are going to look at your vehicle and offer only the scrap metal value for it. It is up to you to try and negotiate up by telling them why it’s worth more then scrap. For example if it runs, that is a good start. Even if it doesn’t run perhaps there are expensive aftermarket parts still on it. You have to make a case. You can read about how to get max value for a junker here.

When you junk a vehicle in the state of Utah you will need the title. You will have to transfer ownership of the vehicle to the salvage and follow the state rules.

Utah Procedure for Transferring Vehicle Ownership

Selling a junked automobile in Utah is like selling any other used auto. Follow these steps:

  • Complete the title assignment on the title certificate, and provide a bill of sale and odometer disclosure (if applicable).
  • Complete vehicle title application form.
  • Visit any DMV office near you.

Learn more about transferring a title on the Utah DMV website,

Buying a Salvage Vehicle in UT

Conversely, perhaps you want to buy a vehicle with a salvage title in Utah. Here is what you should know…

    1. When you purchase it, you will pay Utah states sales tax.
    2. You will need a way to transport the vehicle.
    3. The junkyard will sign over the title to you (which you will need to register the vehicle.
    4. You must have a certified inspector, perform an inspection to certify the vehicle is safe to register (inspections are valid for 2 months in Utah)
    5. Take your salvaged title, photo ID and inspection report to any Utah DMV to register your salvage title.
    6. Provide your Vin, fill out the forms, and pay the fee.

What to Know About Salvage Yards in Utah Before You Go

Going to a salvage in Utah is fun, but in the dead of summer can be brutally hot. You should prepare for the time of year you plan to go. A self service salvage means you do all the work, so pack for your trip properly. That means wear the right clothes, but also bring the right tools.

My recommendations for UT auto salvages are

  • Clothing choices based on the time of year
  • Water and even have extra in your car
  • Sunglasses and a hat
  • Sun screen
  • Mechanic style gloves for pulling parts
  • Hand warmers and winter gloves for winter
  • Boots, preferably steel toe
  • Deicer for winter
  • Battery operated fan for the summer
  • Tools and someone to help you if you are pulling engine parts

Checking Junkyards in the Neighboring States

If you reside close to a state’s border, take advantage of the junkyards in those regions.

Junkyards in Utah Conclusion

Junkyards are by far the best way to save money on used auto parts. In some instances like a restoration project, they may be your only choice. Utah is a great state for a variety of different style yards. While it gets pretty hot, you also get limited rust, since there isn’t the humidity you get in northern states. Now find your favorite junkyards in Utah and pull some used parts.


James is an avid junkyarder and mechanic. He has visited Junkyards in every US state and has restored over 30 makes and models of vehicles. He has several automotive and recycling related blogs that generate over 150K views a month.