Salvage car collected in Fareham

What is Cat S damage?

Experiencing a car accident that results in vehicle damage can be incredibly stressful, and even more so if we don’t understand the level of damage our vehicle has sustained. However, Cat S damage – while not ideal – doesn’t have to be the end of the world.

Written off car with severe damage on its left side, sideways in the road

What is Category S damage?

Cat S damage is structural damage to a car, such as a collapsed crumple zone, a bent chassis, or damage to the suspension. Cat S damage is usually costly yet repairable, however it does require re-registration with the DVLA and declaration to any future buyers.

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Common causes of Cat S damage

Car ownership comes with its risks, including damage sustained in a road traffic collision. Examples of the common causes of Cat S damage include:

  • Crumpled chassis
  • Cracked or corroded sills
  • Fractured cant rail or header rails
  • Collapsed or dented wheel housing extension
  • Cracked bulkhead
  • Crushed crossmembers
  • Snapped wings or wing support
  • Twisted A-post and/or B-post

What to do if my car has Cat S damage?

If your car has sustained Cat S damage, it must be repaired and re-registered, or scrapped.

You will be able to use your car again once it’s repaired to a road safe condition, but it is imperative to follow the legal procedures.

If you want to keep your Cat S vehicle, you will need to send your complete log book to your insurance company and apply for a free duplicate log book using the DVLA’s V62 form. The DVLA will then ensure that the vehicle has Cat S registration. This is important as it is a legal requirement for any future buyers to be fully informed of any previous damage sustained in a Cat S vehicle prior to purchase.

Should I repair or scrap a car with Cat S damage?

With everything considered, repairing and running a Cat S vehicle can be extremely expensive and also no guarantee of vehicle safety. Why? Because there is no universal quality assurance process for garages repairing structural damage. Consequently, these vehicles are notoriously difficult to insure.

Unfortunately, the financial implication of a repair doesn’t end at the garage; any future car sale will likely generate pennies rather than pounds due to notoriously low vehicle values post-Cat S damage.

For these reasons, many people opt to scrap their vehicles after sustaining Cat S damage. The expense incurred in repairing a structurally damaged car rarely pays off, whereas the scrap process can put money in your pocket for your next set of wheels.

Why should I scrap my Cat S vehicle?

There are many benefits for scrapping a vehicle after it sustains Cat S damage.

Firstly, instead of paying to repair your car, you are being paid to recycle it. The money made can help you buy a new, road safe vehicle.

The total amount you receive will vary on the make and model of your car, as well as its age and the structural damage sustained. No matter what you receive, it will make your next purchase easier. Alternatively, you can support a charity by donating some or all of your payment with our dedicated ‘Donate A Car’ scheme.

Scrapping your vehicle will also mean you don’t have to worry about finding an insurer to cover your Cat S car, a notoriously difficult and expensive task. Furthermore, your scrap car will benefit the environment as it will be recycled and the parts given new a new lease of life.

You won’t find an easier process for scrapping your car than with us at Scrap Car Comparison. All you need to do is put your vehicle’s registration number and your postcode into our Scrap Car Value calculator, which will generate the best quotes for your vehicle in seconds.

Once you’ve picked a quote you’re happy with, we’ll contact you to confirm your booking and answer any and all questions you have. If you’re happy, we’ll contact your selected buyer and arrange a free, no contact collection that suits you.

What types of Cat damage are there?

In October 2017, the classification of insurance-write offs was changed in an effort to make vehicle damage easier to understand. The previous Cat A, B, C and D categories were changed to Cat A, B, S and N.

These categories convey the level of damage sustained to a vehicle after an accident, and signifies any damage a used vehicle has undergone for potential new owners.

The updated salvage categories are as follows:

A – Vehicle is damaged beyond repair and no parts can be returned to the road. The car is now must be scrapped with no parts being removed.

B – Vehicle is too damaged to return to the road, but it can be used for parts.

S – Vehicle has been structurally damaged but can return to the road or sold once it has been repaired and re-registered with DVLA.

N – Vehicle has no structural damage and can be repaired and return to the road once it has been repaired.

Find out more

Our network of trusted and certified scrappage buyers will ensure you get the very best deal for your Cat S vehicle, whilst making sure the process is easy and hassle free. Get in touch today to get a quote and find out how much your vehicle is worth.

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