Can you recycle metal? Yes, metal recycling can be a great way to reduce the environmental burden of metal pollution caused by irresponsible metal disposal. However, despite the good intentions of recycling metals, the fact remains that it can be an expensive affair. In this post, you’ll find all the information you need to perfectly recycle metal without spending a fortune. So let’s get down to it without delay!
How does the metal recycling process work?
Before we walk you through the financial side, it’s important to understand what the garbage recycling process is all about and how it works. So, if you’re wondering how to recycle metals, read on:
Step 1 – Sorting Scrap: The first step in the metal recycling process is sorting the scrap. Large companies usually approach this step by hiring third-party metal recycling companies to sort the scrap using Positive Metal Identification (PMI) tests. Companies with their own experience can also invest in scrap sorting metal analyzers. While metal analyzers can be expensive machines, they save money in the long run.
Step 2 – Recycling in plants: After sorting the scrap, it goes to metal recycling plants, where it is tested for radiation. After passing radiation tests, it is burned and shredded by machines.
The tools and knowledge you need to save money on recycling metals
Now that you are familiar with the metal recycling process, it’s time to arm you with the tools and knowledge to help you recycle metals with minimal cost:
Basic knowledge of metals
It is almost impossible to correctly estimate the value of metal waste if you cannot distinguish one metal from another. So, start studying ferrous metals (iron and steel) and non-ferrous metals (lead, bronze, brass, stainless steel, aluminum and copper). In addition to getting to know their properties, it is also worth finding out where these metals are most common and what their value is.
The identification and evaluation of metals depends on a simple tool – the magnet. Ferrous metals easily stick to magnets, while non-ferrous metals do not.
Sorting of containers
You will need sorting containers on hand to keep the metals separate. If you take different metals for a metal junkyard in one container, two things can happen. If you are lucky, metal buyers will ask you to return them, sort the metals into different containers, and then return them. However, at some metal yards, you may be paid based on the metal with the lowest value in the container.
Track real-time values
Real-time metal recovery values change day by day. So it’s important to keep track of them. This will drastically reduce the chances of you being taken for a ride by unscrupulous people in the metal junkyard. Scrap Monster and Scrap Registry are two unique examples of sites you can visit to check scrap values in real time. Usually, copper is the most valuable, and the cheapest is aluminum, tin and iron.
These tips will help you avoid the cost of damage
When you think about recycling metals locally, you should also think about the possibility of personal injury. Simply put, in order to avoid getting injured when collecting scrap metal, you need to follow a few steps which we will cover in detail in this section:
Carry a First Aid Kit: Before you go out to get the scrap metal, you need to have a first aid kit ready. It should contain bandages, a topical antibiotic (for wound healing), tweezers for drawing splinters, painkillers, water and antihistamines or other antiallergic drugs.
Correct Dress: Leather is not recommended for scrap collection, so invest in pants and uppers with long sleeves for puncture resistance. Without puncture-resistant clothing, you will be at risk of cuts and bruises. High-quality work shoes are also essential – look for shoes with alloy toe caps as they can provide protection from contamination.
Take the appropriate equipment with you: ropes, a hammer and a ladder – these are just some of the items of equipment that you should take with you on a scrap expedition. A ladder will allow you to collect scrap from a height, and a sledgehammer will help you remove pieces of metal. By using ropes, you should be able to secure your collection. Failure to do so may result in accidents, especially when traveling by car or traveling to a metal recycling point.
The best places to look for scrap metal for recycling
The sites where metal is regularly removed are the best scrap points and should be visited before contacting the best metal recycling company. If your home has a lot of scrap metal, it’s best to start there. However, if you run out of scrap at home, the best places to collect scrap metal are:
Nearby business centers
If hub in your area, you should definitely visit it as companies are constantly throwing away old equipment and replacing it with new one. For example, offices may upgrade their computers from time to time, and retail stores may get rid of damaged and / or old shopping carts. You should contact the business office managers and ask them to inform you when they are throwing away old equipment.
Contact restorers at nearby apartment complexes as apartments can be a constant source of scrap metal. If they need people to collect scrap metal, ask them to contact you. To facilitate communication, give them your business card.