Effects of a Small Car Dent on a Car's Resale Value

the back of a car with a small dent

A small car dent on your vehicle can affect the resale value, but it does depend on many factors. Of course, when you go to a car dealership you don’t expect to buy a car with a dent in it, or a car that has had dent repair work done.

You will be looking for a neat, tidy car and even if a car you like has a small dent, it might very well detract you from making a purchase.


The initial value of the car you are looking to buy can have a big impact on how you view it. Let’s say, for instance, that you are looking for an old clunker, which has little value and you just want to insure for liability.

You won’t be too bothered about the look, as long as it runs well. A dent here or there might not make you look away if the engine is in excellent order. In fact, it might devalue the car enough to make it attractive to some, as a project.

If a car is a more expensive car, which you would expect to be in excellent condition, then you will most certainly reconsider the resell value.


A small dent can be quite unobtrusive if the car is dark and the dent is in an inconspicuous place, it may not devalue the car too much.

Of course, observing the car closely to detect any signs of small dents will need the use of some very good eyes, but overall it is all a matter of how much you are willing to pay for a vehicle with some signs of damage.