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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I've always wanted a Wrangler but have never owned one. I have the opportunity to purchase one, but it has been in an accident. Would anyone say if its worth the repairs or should I move on?

Thanks!
 

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If the frame isn't bent or eaten by rust and you're mechanically inclined and don't mind doing a bunch of work. It might be easier and more cost effective to replace the tub.

Also is this a private sale or a auction/dealer/junkyard....In other words will it have a rebuilt/salvage title? Which will seriously limit it's resale value.
 

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If what's visible is the extent of the damage, I'd buy it if the price was right.
If it can be driven as-is, it makes it better, fix as you go.

But I don't mind putting time and effort into something if the purchase price is right. On Jeeps, pretty much every part can be purchased aftermarket, or built at home with a little effort.
Also I never worry about resale value (unless I buy to flip it), I never buy something I don't intend to keep for a while.
 

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Hey OP, in order to give you a good answer you are going to have to provide a lot more information about the vehicle, as has been alluded to above.

Is there a link to the online sale at least? Have you seen it in person? Help us help you...
 

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Also I never worry about resale value (unless I buy to flip it), I never buy something I don't intend to keep for a while.
Have had the same pickup for 15 years but, if and when I go to sell it it would be nice to get top dollar for it. Not 2 or 3 thousand less because of a piece of paper that says it's been salvaged. The way folks are CarFax crazy now days if they see a wreck on that report and find a similar vehicle for the same price without a wreck which one do you think they will buy?
 

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Have had the same pickup for 15 years but, if and when I go to sell it it would be nice to get top dollar for it. Not 2 or 3 thousand less because of a piece of paper that says it's been salvaged. The way folks are CarFax crazy now days if they see a wreck on that report and find a similar vehicle for the same price without a wreck which one do you think they will buy?
Which one would you buy?

I look at it this way: A Salvage title is basically calling it "refurbished." You're going to pay less for a refurbished anything.
 

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Which one would you buy?
If I depended on CarFax to tell me what vehicle to buy or see "Salvage" on the title I won't buy it. That was the whole point in asking the OP the questions I did.

Now if it's free.......That's another story
 

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That's the point, normally by the time I'm ready to get rid of a vehicle, it's been rebuilt, refurbished, upgraded and modified enough that bluebook, or any other rasale guide you want to use won't apply.

Bluebook only applies to factory stock, Car fax only has a bearing on PAID maintenance. If you perform maintenance in your own garage, that won't be on carfax. Very few jeeps will be factory stock after 15 years or so.
 

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that's the point, normally by the time i'm ready to get rid of a vehicle, it's been rebuilt, refurbished, upgraded and modified enough that bluebook, or any other rasale guide you want to use won't apply.

Bluebook only applies to factory stock, car fax only has a bearing on paid maintenance. If you perform maintenance in your own garage, that won't be on carfax. Very few jeeps will be factory stock after 15 days or so.
ftfy :)
 
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That's the point, normally by the time I'm ready to get rid of a vehicle, it's been rebuilt, refurbished, upgraded and modified enough that bluebook, or any other rasale guide you want to use won't apply.

Bluebook only applies to factory stock, Car fax only has a bearing on PAID maintenance. If you perform maintenance in your own garage, that won't be on carfax. Very few jeeps will be factory stock after 15 years or so.
I really don't think you understand what a "Salvage" title is

"In North America, a salvage title is a form of vehicle title branding, which notes that the vehicle has been damaged and/or deemed a total loss by an insurance company that paid a claim on it."

^^That will show on CarFax^^

That will also depreciate the value of a vehicle of any year make or model, in most cases by a few thousand dollars. So it really doesn't matter how well it's been repaired, "rebuilt, refurbished, upgraded and modified".

A vehicle with a title that has the word "Salvage" on it is still worth a lot less than the same vehicle setup the exact same way with just as many miles and in the exact same condition without a "Salvage" title.

It doesn't matter if you intend on flipping it or keeping it, sooner or later you will try to sell it. When you do, pretty sure you will want to get as much money as you can out of it.

Really don't care about KBB and it has no bearing on any part of this discussion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Sorry for taking so long to respond. I'll try and answer the questions the best I can. the vehicle is being sold at an insurance auction. The title would be salvage, but if I repair it and submit the receipts - the tag agency in my state would issue a rebuilt title. I'm not really worried about resale value - it would just be a fun vehicle to have and not really concerned about selling it. I haven't gone to see the vehicle in person as the auction will only allow you to view the vehicle 2 days prior to the sale. As far as rust I don't believe it has any, in my state (Oklahoma) it would be unusual for vehicles to have rust on them. As far as details on the vehicle it is a 97 Sport / 168K miles / Automatic. I would eventually like to get the vehicle 100% repaired, but i'd be okay starting with just having it operationally sold ( top fitting correctly/ tailgate staying shut.. ect) Here are some additional photos. I circled in red the problem areas that I can see. On the left it looks a little pushed in, maybe it could be hammered back straight? On the right the lower bracket of the tailgate looks warped as well as the bottom section under it 0 maybe it could be pulled back straight or at least decent at a body stop? I'd want to avoid replacing the tub.
 

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On the left it looks a little pushed in, maybe it could be hammered back straight? On the right the lower bracket of the tailgate looks warped as well as the bottom section under it 0 maybe it could be pulled back straight or at least decent at a body stop? I'd want to avoid replacing the tub.
If you do get it get some estimates at some body shops for the repairs.

I think you'll find that replacing the tub will be cheaper. Sure it's a lot of work but it's not that difficult.

You can pick up a tub from $800 -$1800 if you look around
 

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I am fully aware of what a salvage title is.
If you replace the frame on a jeep because of trail damage or rust, by the laws of most states, that jeep should have either an assembled or salvage title.
The only reason it doesn't say 'Salvage' is because no insurance company was involved.

I am not saying you should buy a salvage titled vehicle. I am saying that in most cases, a salvage title will have no effect on what they plan to do with the jeep.
Salvage titles typically only effect the value of newer vehicles anyway, With age, the values tend to equalize. A 2014 jeep with a salvage title will have a lower value than one with a clean title, but a YJ with a salvage title or assembled title will hold the same street value as one with a standard title.

You would be surprised at how many people on this forum are driving jeeps that legally should have either an assembled vehicle or salvage titles.


If you do get it get some estimates at some body shops for the repairs.

I think you'll find that replacing the tub will be cheaper. Sure it's a lot of work but it's not that difficult.

You can pick up a tub from $800 -$1800 if you look around
Legally, in most states, that would also result in an 'assembled' title.
 

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Me personally, I avoid salvage/theft titles. To me its not worth the headache. A newer vehicle with hail damage I would look at it. But everything else...nah. Thats just me though. If you are comfortable putting it back together than I say have at it.
 

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Yeah there's a few threads in this forum from a person that recently bought a junkyard Jeep at auction. Paid too much for it and has had more problems and spent more money than he bargained for. That cheap Jeep is costing him more than it's worth just to get it driveable. Which I might add, could be the case of the Jeep you're looking at and why the insurance company totaled it and it's sitting at an auction lot.

As far as rust I don't believe it has any, in my state (Oklahoma) it would be unusual for vehicles to have rust on them.
Don't assume there no frame rust just because you're buying it in OK. There a a couple military bases in that state and people move from northern states to OK all the time. That Jeep could have come from anywhere.

My suggestion to you is keep an eye on OK City, Lawton and Wichita Falls Craigslist postings. Military personnel will sell things dirt cheap when they are near a deployment or change of duty stations( going to Europe ).
 

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Body shops usually show up at those insurance auctions because they have the methods and means to repair the damage and make a little $$.

If you are not planning to do the work yourself, probably not worth it. Don't know if a new top is needed, but it appears that the back glass is broken out.

Around our parts a 97 with those miles without significant issues would be about a $5,500 , assuming no salvaged or rebuilt title.
 

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Unless you get it for dirt cheap(maybe 2k or less), I don't think it's worth the headache.

I'm sure there are a ton of other things to fix at 168K miles than just the exterior. You might just end up spending the same as if you bought a regular, clean title, driveable Jeep. Of course, it all depends if you'll be doing the repairs yourself or if you'll be paying other people to do it.
 

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Do a quick online evaluation of what the vehicle would be worth as a trade in with the trim and mileage. I would estimate that the top value in good condition would be under $6K.

A replacement tub may be $1800, but that is not a factory original, and then there is the TG, then painting, then re-assembling the vehicle. Just a decent paint job will be close the $2K, I'm expecting to pay near that on my Rubicon and they don't have to paint the interior and bottom.

You circled the rear bumper but the Crown repo is under $70 and the front is $70 (I have one in my LR), the endcaps are about $30 to $40 for a full set depending on the style you want. The left rear tail light you have circled is $25 add another $25 for the right side so the brilliance matches (experience here). The big thing is the left rear corner of the tub. It would take a good body shop to bang that out or even weld in a replacement from a doner vehicle.

If the auction is close and you don't mind spending the time there it is probably worth $500 to $1000 as it sits, but I wouldn't go over the $1000. If it's a 4 cyl, just forget about it.
 
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