Basics of Scrap Metal Recycling

You probably know that recycling plastic, clothing and paper minimises the amount of waste that ends up in landfills, reducing environmental pollution. However, a segment of the industry that is still not as popular is scrap metal recycling. Many people don't understand what is involved in scrap metal recycling other environmental preservation. It is why a lot more scrap metal ends up in landfills than plastic or paper waste. This article explores the basics of scrap metal recycling.

Scrap Metal Sources 

Knowing where to look is the first step towards a successful scrap metal collection. Some people believe that commercial facilities, such as construction sites, metal fabrication plants and garages, are the only best sources of scrap metal. Restricting yourself to such areas limits the types of metals you collect. You do not have to look too far for scrap metals since homes are an excellent source. Household items such as furniture, electronics, vehicles and packaging can contain valuable scrap metal. It is the reason recycling enthusiasts encourage personal stocktaking of home items to establish what is recyclable.

Magnet Assess Value 

When talking about scrap metal recycling, the first thing that comes to mind is metal value. The value of a metal determines how much you get from your scrap load, which is why you need a magnet. Ferrous metals, such as steel and iron, are magnetic and not worth a lot at a scrapyard. However, it does not mean that metal scrap yards do not take ferrous metals. On the other hand, non-ferrous metals do not stick to magnets and attract a premium value. They include copper, aluminium, brass and bronze. Therefore, you should always invest in a magnet when scrapping for metal. It helps to know the value of metals and assists in sorting.

Removal of Non-Metallic Components 

Scrap metal contains all manner of non-metallic materials, such as paint and plastic. The non-metallic components can affect the quality of recycled metal, which is why scrap metal yards pay more for relatively clean scrap metals. The reason is that recycling pure scrap metal is easy and cost-effective. In contrast, recyclers must blow hot air on 'impregnated' scrap metals to remove the non-metallic elements. Since the process requires energy, scrap metal yards save costs by paying less for scrap metal with lots of non-metallic components. Thus, cleaning your scrap metal maximises its value, but you must assess whether the time and effort required are worth the amount of money you will get.