Car Being Scrapped but the Tyres Are New?

Hi All,

I replaced my tyres a week before the front of my car was smashed in. Is there anything I can do to scrape some money back from my now undriveable car?

Smash repair quotes have already priced me out of fixing it and I'm ready to see the rest of it off but the tyres are a real sore point for me.
It's currently stuck where it was parked (curbside hit and run) meaning it isn't readily accessible without it being towed.

I'm no expert but the tyres and rims seem pristine - is there anything I can do here? Would the wreckers offer more if I point this out?

I'm in the ACT for reference.

Update for anyone searching for similar circumstances in the future:

Most wreckers will reduce the quote for your car for the inconvenience of having to winch it up without the wheels (afterwards they just chuck the tyres onto a big pile anyways). Worth ringing around for the difference of a couple hundred. I managed to sell the wheels for 350. If I'd have stuck it out I might have gotten better but I didn't want to hold onto them too long.

The biggest pain in the ass was finding something to keep the car elevated with the added threat that it might be destroyed when car is winched.

Overall, worth it for cash in hand and not too much faffing in retrospect. Thanks all for the advice.


  • +2

    Could you call one if those mobile tyre places and get them to come out and replace them with crap tires? Then sell the wheels?

    • Not sure I can even access the curb-facing tyres. Best I could do is ask the wreckers if I can take the tyres back but I'm not sure if this is even possible.

      • +9

        I'm sure some groups over in QBN would know what to do with a small crew and some cinder blocks during the night :P

  • Do you have insurance?

    • +1

      No insurance, it's a cheap old car. Not sure it would have helped much in this case anyway with the guy doing a runner.

      • +8

        No insurance? Seems like bad luck the other guy's doing a runner and not you.

      • +1

        Usually if you can't identify the other driver or car you can still make a claim, you would just lose your excess.

        • Claim to whom? He said he doesn't have insurance?

          • +4

            @Franconian: I was replying to the above message where he said he thought he wasn't sure if insurance would have helped as the guy did a runner.

          • @Franconian: Presumably he has third party property, in which case you can sometimes be covered if the other driver did a runner and you were not at failt.

            • @nigel deborah: What third party insurance covers this? I've never heard of such a policy.

              • @Munki: Hmm - you are right. I checked my policy, and it includes cover but only if the at-fault party was uninsured and you know who they are. Not relevant for the OP since at-fault party ran off.

            • @nigel deborah: Still have to be able provide the details of those responsible for the damage (so that there's someone the insurer can attempt recovery from).

  • +8

    Wreckers will do an assessment. Just point out the new tyres and provide invoice. Don't expect much though.

  • What size tyres, and what brand?

    • +1

      Yokohama Advan Fleva v701 205/50r17 93w.

      • +5

        So about $800 worth brand new, probably now with half being used. Worth faffing around getting some other old wheel/tyres that you'd then have to swap on the side of the road?

        • +27

          $800 new = lucky to sell for $250 used

          Sounds like too much fkn around for the ROI

          • +2

            @spackbace: prolly cost you $250 in labour to faff around swapping the tyres, advertising, then having some dude kick them, say they're not really what they wanted, but they'll offer you half of what you were asking …

            • @Hangryuman: Yeah, but you buy cheap rims and tyres and just straight swap. Paying someone to do it isn’t viable.

              You want the return, you have to do the work.

          • +1

            @spackbace: C'mon man. Give the man about tree fiddy.

      • +1

        What car and are they alloy or steel rims?

        If they are a common vehicle rim and alloys someone may buy them for a cheap upgrade. I bought upgrade factory rims with slightly better tyres because it was cheaper than buying a new set of tyres plus they look better. I could repeat the process wading as it’s a 4wd and lots of people sell they good stock wheels with decent tyres to go aftermarket.

    • +32

      Didn't read the tea leaves too closely that morning unfortunately.

  • +9

    If you don’t have insurance then its not like the car is now owned by your insurance company like a write off. So you still own it, and have a right to the tyres. That being said, are they ok…they've been in accident

  • +8

    Buy second hand worn tyres and wheels. Fit to car. Sell good wheels.

    Possibly arrange a buyer to buy your good wheels, have them switch their wheel onto it.

    Scrappies are unlikely to give you much extra for good tyres. If you want maximum return, you need to do some work yourself.

    • I like this idea. You will need some wheels on otherwise wreckers won't pick the car up.

      Either sell it on gumtree on the provisio to trade with their old wheels, or you may be able to get some free steel wheels from gumtree. They don't need to be the same size, but will need to fit so that the wrecker who would pick up the car can tow it.

  • Are your blinker globes fine too? you might get $1.00 for them all as well

    • +45

      If it's a BMW, regardless of age, the blinkers will be unused.

      • +5

        So your saying bottle up the blinker fluid and sell "as new"

        • +1


        • -1

          Could drain the blinker fluid while at it because that's quite expensive as well.

      • The rear view mirror would also have not had much use.

  • Why don't you sell the tyres on Gumtree, as suggested on Whirlpool?

    • +2

      Trying to determine if it's likely to pay off or if as sraymond suggests its a waste of time. I've not gone this route before.

      They're good tyres and virtually unused so I think it's worth a go but if they sit around unsold then the extra $50 I might get from the wreckers is objectively a better deal.

    • -2

      Nice…. advice shopping… and once again, Whingepool say almost a carbon copy of what is said here… :D

      • +3

        I got good advice from both threads. I'm glad I asked.

      • +7

        Can't help it if both places filled with peeps in the know.

        Often the same peeps tho…

        Sometimes I read something old on whirlpool and agree wholeheartedly. Then realise it was me a decade ago.

        What's it all mean peg?

        • +2

          Try reading something you wrote over there 20 years ago.

          • @serpserpserp: 30 years is as old as I can find thanks to Usenet. Thankfully I've gained far more tact and humility since those days. The cringe factor was sky high when I found those.

            • +1

              @banana365: I am disappointed daily by who I was yesterday.

              But that's what it would look like, if I were growing as a person, wouldn't it?

    • Interesting….

      i think the catalytic converters by themselves are selling for a few hundred because of the rare metals inside them

      my husband parked in a busy shopping centre carpark at lunch time today (Watergardens in Melbourne) in our car (2006 Hilux) and when he came back and started the car it was noisy as hell. Upon checking the exhaust he found a section had been sawn off and the catalytic converter was gone!

      I guess they are worth enough to steal, probably why people decat their cars so if a thief tries to look under to steal the cats, there wont be any coz its a straight pipe! Hahaha Where do you even sell it to anyways? A fence? Or some metal recycler?

  • +6

    Waste of effort. Try to wrangle a few extra bucks off the wreckers. Trying to sell them on gumtree etc will only result in them sitting in your garage for a year or more.

  • +2

    I remember being told by Kmart Auto that it was illegal for them to fit second hand tyres. This is in Victoria

    • +7

      Of course they say that!

    • +2

      What a load o manure… Of course, they then happily sold you new ones?

    • Lol

    • They lied.

      End of.

    • +6

      Don't forget mechanics are responsible for everything they fit.

      Given they cannot possibly guarantee the condition of the second hand tyres you're asking them to fit they would be legally responsible for them failing.

      So perhaps not illegal per se but I could see why they'd refuse, regardless of the fact they would prefer to sell you a new set instead.

    • I had a car written off due for insurance assessment. I wanted to swap out the wheels with an old set but found one of them couldn't be inflated).

      Took it to Kmart tire and Auto, they told me the tires were worn and they wouldn't help me. When I returned home I found they also removed the valve stem.

      I managed to find a replacement from another tire. Kmart Tire and Auto have some odd authority complex

    • Tire place down the road from me fit and balance any road worthy tire I bring them for $20.

      Always get my tires second hand new from gumtree/fb marketplace, saves heaps of money.

  • +9

    It's currently stuck where it was parked (curbside hit and run) meaning it isn't readily accessible without it being towed.

    If you wait much longer someone else may help themselves to your wheels and tyres…

  • Are you sure it's not driveable? Try and drive it home. Take the wheels off and any other parts you can sell. After my accident with the front completely pushed in and 3 airbags gone off, it still started and drove off the road to a safe place.

    • +3

      Did you pop through the KFC drive thru on the way home?

  • +2

    I had similar happen. I put the car on bricks and took the wheels off just before the wreckers came. They just dragged it off the bricks up onto a flat bed without the wheels. I think they gave me $50 or something at the time for the car.

  • +2

    Wreckers will probably not give you much as most people probably wouldn't bother taking the wheels off. Easiest time to do it would be once its been towed to the wreckers. The wreckers shouldn't have any issues with you taking stuff off if its all agreed to upfront. I've done this before with a wrecked car, gone in and just removed what I wanted.

    This hurts though, I've had a couple of written off cars and it always happens after an expensive repair. Car 1 - new radiator and 2 weeks later smashed. Car 2 - new clutch and 1 week later wrecked. Car 3 new bushed thought the front, 6 months later, yep you guessed it.

  • +8

    Can’t help with tyres but I would act quick with an ad on Gumtree.

    As for wreckers, I just sold a 2000 Toyota Corolla hatchback as needed a timing belt, rego and had a water leak at water pump/engine. They asked me how much I wanted. I said a few hundred and agreed over the phone on $300. I had left a message with another wrecker and they called back and offered $500. I said no. Then called me again and offered $700. I called initial one and they matched it. So, don’t go too low and ask them what they will pay. Tell them you will think about it and call another one or two or just take whatever you are offered if you can’t be bothered. BTW, neither looked at vehicle and buyer told me wanted engine and gearbox and rest would go to scrap.

  • You need to contact your insurer

    No insurance, it's a cheap old car.

  • +1

    Do you have a spare wheel in the boot? Least that one tyre taken care of?

  • +2

    get a wrecker to pick it up and pay you cash, tell them without wheels / rims, when the driver arrives, meet them on site and jack up / take off old tyres and rims …

    get new cheapie car and try to match the stud pattern …

    or get replacement cheap car with same stud pattern, swap out tyres, get aligned, winning!

  • You don't mention insurance?

    Why you do is take the wheel off. You hire a tow truck, and haul off wreck to car wrecker's for scrap.

  • +2

    May be worth taking them. Last time I sold a car to a wreckers, they actually charged a disposal fee for tyres, because rubbish tips charge for them. I think we get $300 for the Dato 120Y, - $50 for each of the 5 tyres, so only ended up with $50. Still happy as the car only cost $300 and there were no rentals available at the time.

    So the wreckers may actually pay you more to get the car without the tyres.

  • Buy another car the same model and then swap the tyres and rims.

    • Username checks out. Definitely smoking something.

  • swap the wheels.

  • Good luck getting money for the tyres or wheels. I have a set of 5 expensive alloys and top end brand name tyres and I have no interest whatsoever. One of those things you pay a bundle for but second hand value is just not there. I'd never buy new wheels again, that's for sure.

    • Being expensive and top end brand tires may be part of the problem. If you’re looking at high end jdm/euro wheels people are particular about every aspect and they are effectively bespoke. If they are standard rims with new tires and priced appropriately then people may buy it.

      • I've literally asked everybody to send me an offer…I haven't priced them…no interest at all. I've even listed all the specifics so people don't need to wrack their brains.

        • +1

          personally if anything is marked as "offer" I ignore the add. not worth my time.

          • @Antikythera: Lol, I always make offers. You win some you lose some.

            If I've had certain things for sale, nothing will stop people making offers if they want the item/s.

  • Take off the tyres. Call a scrap metal place and they’ll give you $150 or maybe a bit more for the scrap value.

    Whats the issue? I’m confused.

  • No tyre place I've come across will fit used tyres, they want nothing to do with them if something happens.

    Unless it's straight swap with no damage to rims then I'd not want to buy them (and assume many others would be the same), then if I knew the rims\rubber where in an accident then I'd want nothing to do with them even more so.

    Cop the loss and move on, you don't even know the state of the rims\rubber on the kerb side, was it a hit and run and no damage was done to the rims or tyres? (seems unlikely).

    I'd hate to sell them to someone and something go wrong and someone get hurt over a couple hundred bucks and your own greed, many wouldn't care though.

    • Most will pop tyres on and off rims for $5-$20/wheel… I don't think I've ever had a shop say no…

  • Take off tyres, leave them on bricks, tell scraper to pick up the car and wreck it. Their hassle to get the car towed n disposed.
    If they say wheels missing, just say maybe it got stolen at night 🤷

    • I doubt anyone would pick up a scrap car with no wheels unless it's worth a lot.

      • Not too hard to haul a vehicle without wheels, it just gets winched up onto the flatbed tow truck

      • +2

        Abandoned car put the front of our place was picked up by scrappie. Used a hi-ab on his truck with a chain chucked through the front windows. Lifted it up, dropped it on top of another car already on the truck and then crushed the roof with the hi-ab to hold it down. The tied it down with chains through the windows pullin the doors down.

        Started out as a decent looking Camry. Was definitely scrap by the time it was taken away.

  • Sidetrack- I remember when my car was written off I'd just bought a year's worth of rego. Insurance company "deducts" unused rego from final payments as it makes up part of the agreed value of the car and I can claim it from the Govt. Pissed me right off…. now i pay my rego monthly!

  • +3

    Parents had a car that was hail damaged. Was taking ages to get repaired due to how many damaged in the storm. In the mean time it was re-regoed along withnnew tyres. When the insurer rang and said they were going to write it off and pick it up in a few days the old man went out and put some old wheels on it and put the good tyres and alloys on his trailer. Nothing said by insurer.

  • Get some cheap crappy steel wheels off facebook marketplace and swap them over.

  • +1

    Well for reference I had an old car that I had done all the brakes and rotors just weeks before it was written off shit happens

  • +2

    Is the tank still full of perfectly usable gasoline?

  • +1

    alternatively if buying another car, all other things being equal, check that the replacement vehicle runs the same tyres. If so keep 1 or 2 of the wrecked car tyres in the garage in case you need a quick replacement. My old car was written off in a crash, insurer was happy for me to take some belongings from the repairers yard so I got my seat covers and took the spare tyre. Three weeks later I got a nail through the tyre of the replacement vehicle. Tyre repairer couldn't fix due to the damage it caused so I swapped it for the old cars spare tyre - it was the same size.

  • +1

    If you have a place to put them then why not keep em, you can wait to buy your next car and see if they will fit, or just sell them if not.

  • +2

    Get the car towed home and start listing individual parts for wrecking. Take some space and work, but wrecking the car yourself over time will give a decent result.

  • I have seen pretty much immaculate OEM Porsche 911/Cayman/Boxster wheels and tyres for sale on ebay and struggle to sell for $500.
    These are wheels that were $6000+ as an optional extra from factory.

    If your wheels are just standard wheels from an every day car. It might not be worth it the space / time.
    But you can make money parting out a car. But you need to be patient.

    • +1

      immaculate OEM Porsche 911/Cayman/Boxster wheels

      That’s a fairly niche market. I’d guess that Camry wheels would sell a lot quicker because people with cheap camrys often want cheap wheels. It’s about the potential demand.

      I’ve sold several sets of stock wheels over the years. All for common vehicles, not for heaps of money, but maybe 50% retail - which is better than a scrap dealer will give you because they need to factor in a profit margin and they’ll only get the same price as direct on gumtreee.

    • yep - that's the beauty of buying used - get top quality goods as new for a tenth of the new price

      reminds me of an ex-boss who grew up poor, worked hard to start his own business before he could finally afford his first new car and bought a brand new Mercedes

      proud as Punch, he drove it out of the dealers, planted his foot down the road, came to the first roundabout, misjudged the steering as he had no experience driving, and centre-punched the beautiful sparkling new grille - in the first 100m

      so yeah - paying top dollar for shiny new can bring you top-shelf stories of disappointment and lo$$ … $hee$h … !

  • In order to get some decent money back on your tyres and/or rims, you need to get them off yourself.

    Good luck tho!

  • Parked by the side of the road huh …… there is a risk that someone could see those almost brand new tires and steal them ……

  • -1

    Are your tyres Michelin PS4S?