How To Get a Rebuilt Title in Washington State

How to Get Rebuilt Title in Washington

If your car was wrecked greatly, you’ll need a rebuilt title if you wish to repair and drive it again. Getting a rebuilt title indicates that your car is declared safe for road use again, and this is after a thorough inspection.

While it is true that the process of getting a rebuilt title is similar for all states in the USA, there are little peculiarities that make laws for rebuilding a car in one state different from the other. This makes it important that even if you know how to get a rebuilt title in Georgia, it is necessary that you learn how to do the same in Washington state.

Getting a rebuilt title in Washington state requires an application, inspection, and paying the required fees. However, there are certain factors that will determine if your car is eligible for a rebuilt title in Washington state.

Read on to find out more about how to get a rebuilt title in Washington state.

Does Washington Have Rebuilt Titles?

Yes. Washington has and makes provisions for rebuilt titles. Rebuilt titles are exclusively reserved for salvaged vehicles, but not all Washington vehicles with a salvage certificate or title are eligible for a rebuilt title.

The car's age, retail market value, and overall worth play a great role in determining which vehicle gets a rebuilt title in Washington.

What Does a Rebuilt Title Mean in Washington State?

In Washington state, a rebuilt title is a title that is reserved for salvage vehicles that were repaired even after they were declared a total loss.

These vehicles are usually damaged greatly, and insurance companies have no other option than to declare them a total loss. Most times in Washington state, rebuilt titles are not only reserved for cars that were declared.

A rebuilt title is issued when a car has great damage, and the owner or insurance company decides that it is an economic waste to try to rebuild it. In this scenario, a report is made, and the certificate of title for the damaged vehicle is surrendered to the department under RCW 46.12.600.

How To Get a Rebuilt Title in Washington State

Here are easy ways to get a rebuilt title in Washington state:

1. Confirm eligibility

The first thing to do to get a rebuilt title in Washington state is to confirm the eligibility of the vehicle. Not all salvaged vehicles in Washington state are eligible for a rebuilt title. You’ll need to confirm the chances of your car getting a rebuilt title.

Here’s a list of requirements/standards that your vehicle must attain for it to be eligible for a rebuilt title in Washington state:

  • The vehicle is five years old or newer.
  • The vehicle is at least six years old and not more than twenty years, based on its model year(release).
  •  The vehicle’s retail fair market value is at least up to the market value threshold, which is $10,430 before its damage, wreck, and before it was declared a total loss.
  • Your vehicle is a passenger vehicle, SUV, or light-duty truck.

2. Application for a salvage title

After confirming the eligibility of your vehicle, and you are sure that your vehicle is eligible for a rebuilt title, you can proceed with applying for a salvage title.

In Washington state, you can only get a rebuilt title once you have a salvage title. Getting a salvage title will permit you to proceed with rebuilding/repairing and restoring the damaged vehicle.

To apply for a salvage title, you have to report the vehicle as damaged first. The circumstances surrounding this process depend on if you are applying as the registered owner of the vehicle or with an insurance company.

If you are applying as the legal owner, you will need to send in the title of the vehicle within 15 days of the car’s destruction.

Insurance companies will send in the original title within 15 days of the settlement of the claim. You can do this by writing ‘destroyed’ and the date it was destroyed on the face of the title and mail it to the following address:


Department of Licensing

PO Box 9038

Olympia, WA 98502

After sending the title, take your vehicle’s registration, a notice of the cancellation letter, and the application to the state’s vehicle licensing office and apply for a salvage title.

3. Repairs

After getting your salvage title, you can proceed with the necessary repairs. We will advise that you hire the services of a professional to help you rebuild your damaged vehicle.

This is because the vehicle will need to pass inspection to verify that it meets all safety and legal requirements and also confirm the ownership of the vehicle and parts used in its repairs.

The repairs of a salvaged vehicle can include/but are not limited to, the engine, frame, transmission, doors, seat, hood, bumper, airbags, front or rear differential, clip, truck bed or box, fender, etc.

You will fail inspection if any of the vehicle's major components is missing or not properly repaired.

4. Application for a rebuilt title

At this stage, you will need to proceed with applying for a rebuilt title. Unlike in most states, Washington state doesn’t permit you to drive your rebuilt salvage car, not even to the inspection spot, until you get a rebuilt title.

You will need to tow the vehicle to the Washington State Patrol Office. Before towing the car to the office, ensure that you have an inspection booking before your visit.

5. Inspection

The need for salvage vehicle inspection is to ensure that you have repaired the vehicle according to the safety and legal requirements of the state. The inspection will cover all major components of the vehicle.

During an inspection, you will need to submit the following documents and forms;

  •  The Washington State Patrol Inspection Request form
  • Valid Picture Identification
  • Certificate of Title
  • Receipts of all major components’ parts used for repairs and part replacement in the vehicle

In the event that you purchased any of those parts from a third-party dealer, you will need to provide a notarized bill of sale from the seller, with attached original receipts of the parts.

Part sales from licensed businesses should come with a letterhead statement of transfer plus the original parts receipts.

If the car was purchased from an auction, wrecking yard, or private party, you must attach an auction bill of sale, wrecking yard bill-of-sale, notarized bill-of-sale, and affidavit in lieu of title as the case may be.

Title and bill-of-sale with the owners' signatures are required for salvage vehicle purchases from private owners.

You must know you don’t need an inspection in Washington if you own the salvaged vehicle that is to be rebuilt. However, you still have to contact the Washington state department of Licensing.

6. Fees

After inspection, the next thing is to proceed with all the fees for getting a rebuilt title. There are no specifics on how much you will need to pay to get a rebuilt title in Washington state, so you will need to contact the Washington State Department of Licensing to inform you of any necessary fees you will need to pay.

It is important to mention that title fees in Washington fall within $15, but you will pay extra for a quick title. After paying the fees and finalizing your paperwork, you will get a title branded ‘WA Rebuilt.’

What Is the Difference Between a Rebuilt and Salvage Title in Washington State?

The difference between a rebuilt title and a salvage title is that rebuilt titles are issued to salvage vehicles that are rebuilt and inspected to be roadworthy again. Salvage titles are for damaged vehicles for insurance companies to declare them a total loss.

How Long Does It Take To Get a Vehicle Title in Washington State?

There are a lot of factors that can determine how long it takes to get a vehicle title in Washington state. Getting a vehicle title in Washington state can span 8 – 10 weeks. However, you can fast-track the process by applying with a quick title.


Getting a rebuilt title in Washington state might seem difficult, but with the right guidance and knowledge, you will certainly scale through. Ensure that you follow the steps we have offered in this article, and ensure that your repairs are done professionally so that you can pass inspection.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get my car inspected in Washington State?

You can get your car inspected in Washington state by scheduling an inspection. You must provide a completed Washington state patrol inspection form which should be issued by a licensing agent and attached with other support documents.

To get your car inspected in Washington state, you must first contact a Washington state Department of Licensing agent to confirm if you need an inspection.

How much is a quick title in Washington State?

You can get a quick title in Washington state for $76.75 or $85.50. The cost of getting a quick title depends on if you are applying for a vehicle or a boat. Boats have a quick title fee of $76.50, while vehicles have a quick title fee of $85.50.

However, it is important to state that you cannot get a quick title for a vehicle with a rebuilt title.

How do you tell if a title is clean or salvaged in Washington State?

You can simply tell if a title is clean or salvaged in Washington state by looking at the title certificate. Clean titles don’t have any inscriptions, but salvage titles are clearly written ‘SALVAGE’ in the top right corner.