1999 Explorer found abandoned! | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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1999 Explorer found abandoned!


New Member
April 1, 2018
Reaction score
City, State
Summerville, South Carolina
Year, Model & Trim Level
2015 Toyota Camry LE
Hey guys. I'm new to this forum. I don't own an Explorer myself, but the reason I signed up here is because I found what looks to be a 1999 model abandoned at an apartment complex that I recently moved to. I have photos of the vehicle here:
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Judging by the expired license plate year and all that dirt around it, it definitely has been abandoned. I would love to breathe some new life into it so I want to start from scratch and go from there. Is this the right place to be for it?

Lol, you can't just seize possession of a vehicle whether abandoned or not. More likely it's someone in financial straits and they just haven't been driving it nor got the new tags, but it could have been stolen and left there, or owner is in prison... any number of reasons it's in this condition. If the owner is a resident at the apartment complex, it should be assumed that the resident has the property owner's permission to park it there, meaning it is not abandoned.

Regardless you could contact your local DMV to find out what the laws are in your state. Generally an attempt would be made to locate the owner, or it would be towed IF the owner is not a resident at the complex (or else defers to complex owner's decision), either way with the vehicle owner retaining possession unless the storage fees exceed a certain amount then it would be sold at auction, or if the owner is located before it is towed, you could make an offer to buy it.

Here are the standards for abandoned vehicles in your state:

Not having a current tag nor being driven recently is not part of the standard. You can leave such a vehicle on someone's property with their consent forever and a day. It's just not legal to operate it on public roads.

To be fair, considering I also live in SC, you can most likely forget it, the title laws here are a rough patch, I have a literal miracle story though but it's irrelevant and too long to type, but with your situation, you have to go to the apartment complex, and then they'll probably refer you to the owner who almost certainly lives there, who will either want to sell it or send you on your way. Judging by the tires, it hasn't been sitting there without moving that long, despite the filthy appearance. Here in SC anything over 13 years old apparently can be scrapped without the title, you literally sign you own it (guess where that went), it was so bad where I am the yards literally refuse to purchase them without the titles.

Probably has a junk SOHC in it, or a blown transmission anyways. Also, I really doubt it’s abandoned, or it would have been hauled away. If you want an old crappy explorer, get on Craigslist. No shortage of them.