Conway business gives "junk yard" a new meaning

David Williams of Johnsonville is making his third visit to Pick-N-Pull in Conway, looking for parts to customize his 1981 Chevy pickup.

He's done business with junk yards before, but says this place is different.

"I wouldn't consider this to be a junk yard. I'd consider it.. uh, automobile heaven?" Williams laughs.

The owners of Pick-N-Pull would agree: their business isn't a junk yard.

It's more user-friendly than that and part of a nationwide trend that's updating the auto salvage business.

For one thing, there may be lots of rusty old cars on the lot, but the yard is neater and more organized than a typical junk yard.

"A lot of people say this is the cleanest yard they have ever been on. That's actually a compliment, that's great," said Pick-N-Pull manager George Rios.

Also, this may be about the only auto salvage facility in the area that you have to pay to get into.

The $2.00 admission charge allows you to grab a wheelbarrow or a cart and search, all day if you want, for any part you need from any vehicle.

Then you'll use your own tools to remove the parts. Again, that's unlike a typical junk yard where the employees strip the parts out of cars.

"Here, I can come, look through everything, see what I want, pick out what suits my needs, instead of what the owner thinks I want," Williams said.

All the fluids are drained out of the cars, so there's not as much grease and grime on the lot, and the 1,500 cars in stock are recycled on a regular basis, so there are different vehicles to pick through.

Similar businesses have popped up in other areas, but the concept is new to the Grand Strand.

"A lot of people will say they were waiting for this place to open," Rios said.

Pick-N-pull is also putting people to work. By the time they're fully up and running, the business will employ about 15 people, Rios said.

The business opened about two weeks ago on Church Street in Conway.