While each junkyard uses its own system and method for determining price, most typically take into consideration the condition of the parts, the current market demand and the labor necessary to prepare the part for resale. Additionally, some yards factor in any legal requirements for processing certain parts, along with general business overhead.
One of the largest contributing factors to the junkyard price of a used auto part is its condition, which includes physical wear as well as its lifetime usage. A part that experienced little use in its life is worth more than one with excessive use because it is less likely to break down in the near future. If the part does not function, or requires any repairs to return it to proper working order, the junkyard is also likely to pay less because of the added expenses on its part.
Similarly, if the part is in good condition but requires extra work to remove it from the car, the junkyard may also pay less than it would if the part were freestanding. Many junkyards also set price according to customer demand for the part, with rare parts going for a higher price than those readily available. Certain junkyards may also forgo these standards, instead aiming at a more simplistic pricing model that places a flat rate on all parts of a certain type, not taking into account condition or the vehicle from which it comes.