Finding salvage parts for your Mini Cooper is the best way to save money on repairs. While you can find Mini’s at a standard auto salvage, there are some places that are more ideal to look. Below I’ll share how the Mini Cooper junkyards near me work, where to find salvage Mini’s, and some tips on selling one to a salvage yard.
Mini Cooper Junkyards Near Me – Use the Locator Below
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According to Carbase.com, since the 2000s, Mini Coopers have established a small base of customers in the US, selling consistently between 40k and 65k each year since 2006, Sales of Mini’s peaked in the US around 2013 and have been declining steady since.
What that means to us is that there are plenty of Mini’s showing up at salvages now especially given they peaked almost 10 years ago.
How Does a Mini Cooper Junkyard Operate
Auto junkyards function like any local business in terms of they way they operate. There business model is similar to that of a thrift shop except they deal in used auto parts. Junkyards will buy wrecked automobiles and then sell off any functional auto parts for reuse. This practice supports sustainability and reduces the amount of waste produced each year.
There are different types of junkyards. Some are self service, where you pay an entrance fee, pick the parts off cars that you need, and then pay for the parts. There are full service yards, which will pull the parts for you. Then there are also warehouse style and online junkyards, where you purchase pre-pulled parts from a warehouse or you order them online.
How Do Mini’s End Up at a Salvage Yard
If you are a Mini enthusiast, you may be thinking…who would junk a Mini? Mini Coopers come to salvage yards through various sources. At the Mini Cooper salvage yards near me, they come in through private owners, insurance companies, and auctions.
When a car comes from a private owner, it is often because the vehicle doesn’t run. Sometimes an owner will try to fix it, throw parts at the problem, and end up junking the car anyway.
Mini’s might also come into a salvage via an insurance company. If the vehicles was in an accident and the insurance company deemed it a “total loss” claim, they will collect the car and sell it to a junkyard. This helps offset the claim they had to put out to the vehicles owner.
Other junked Mini’s may come from an auction. This is typically from salvage, repo, or police auctions. In this scenario a junkyard will buy a “lot” of junked vehicles for their inventory and then sell off all the functioning parts.
How Junkyards Process Vehicles
When a junked Mini Cooper enters the salvo, they can’t just put it out in the yard for pick and pull. The first thing they need to do is processes it to meet government regulations and to maximize their profit potential.
Junkyards are regulated by environmental standards, to ensure they are introducing hazardous chemicals into the local ground water. To adhere to these guidelines they need to drain all the major fluids like gas, oil, antifreeze, wiper fluid, etc. Some of these fluids like oil and gas get recycled, while fluids like anti-freeze and wiper fluid are bottled and resold.
Next they will pull some parts off the car in order preserve their current quality. Parts like batteries and alternators are stripped so they don’t sit in the yard and continue to corrode. If the condition of the transmission and/or motor is still good, they may pull it out as well. Some parts may be pulled, rebuilt, and then sold with a warranty.
What Kind of Used Mini Cooper Parts Can You Find?
You can find all types of used OEM Mini Cooper parts. This includes all the regular parts such as panels, doors, seats, motors, transmissions, pedals, wiring, dashboards, exhausts, intakes, etc. You will find all the parts relevant to the various generations and models like the hatchback, cabrio, coupe, roadster, stationwagon, and the Countryman.
One of the keys to being a pro picker is understanding what years of the Mini have compatible parts. While there aren’t good parts to swap out from year to year, staying within the generations is your best bet. There is a brief description of the generations and years here.
What Happens After the Car is Stripped?
For any car that gets picked apart at a junkyard, the final step for the vehicle depends on the business. Some salvage yards will let the cars rust in the lot. Better managed salvage yards will send the car to get crushed and sell it for scrap metal. This makes more room on the lot and gets the last bit of money out of their investment.
Pros and Cons of Used OEM Parts
When it comes to buying salvage Mini Cooper parts, there are pros and cons…
Pros of Buying Used Mini Cooper at a Salvage Yard
Saving money is obviously the number one reason for buying salvage parts. At the Mini Cooper junkyards near me you can get a battery for $12, a door for $25, and engine for $350, and an alternator for $20. With prices that low it makes sense to pull extra parts and sell them online yourself to other Mini Cooper owners. Some of the best parts to pull are headlight and tail light enclosures, fenders, bumpers, and side mirrors. Those are the parts most commonly replaced in accidents.
Another great perk on salvage parts is that you can find factory installed and assembled OEM pieces. This beats getting after market parts and you can actually see how the part was originally installed.
Lastly, depending on the year of you r Mini, a salvage yard might be you only option. If you own a gen 1 2002, good luck finding parts anywhere else but an auto junkyard.
Cons of Buying Salvage Mini Cooper Parts Cheap
Quality is always the concern with salvage parts for any model of vehicle. You just can’t be 100% sure that the part will work or last a long time. To mitigate the risk you must thoroughly inspect all parts before even pulling them. Check each piece for rust, corrosion, cracks, etc. If you are pulling a manual transmission, step on the clutch see if it is smooth and move the shifter and see if it grinds.
Tips For Selling Your Mini Cooper to a Salvage Yard
If you have a Mini that you are ready to junk, you should think through a few things first. Can the car be fixed? If so what are the costs? Is it worth more then scrap metal? To help estimate the value of your vehicle, read this. Mini’s don’t weigh alot so the scrap value on the vehicles tend to be low. If the car is driveable, you want to negotiate for more then the scrap metal value.
If you are ready to junk it, here are some basics:
- Siphon the gas if it is still good and use it yourself
- Remove all personal belongings from the vehicle
- If you have a Mini Copper produced after 2008, wipe all your personal data from the vehicles computers.
- Cancel your registration, insurance, and license plates
- Find your title, you will need it to sell it
- Look at the Kelly Blue Book value. Just as a frame of reference, you won’t get that for a junked Mini.
- Consider removing any parts you can yourself before junking it.
Resources for Mini Coopers
- Mini USA Homepage
- North American Forums – Mini Cooper
- Mini Enthusiast Forum
- Mini Mania
- Reddit r/Mini
Mini Cooper Junkyards Near Me – Wrap Up
Junkyards are the best place to find heavily discounted OEM parts for your Mini. The more you know about what parts can interchange with other years, the faster you can find the parts you need. For any part that you purchase, you should always expect it thoroughly. No matter how cheap a part is, you should never sacrifice safety over money. This is what I have learned from the Mini Cooper junkyards near me.