How to Recycle Scrap Metals

Collecting scrap metal is a  way to scrounge up some extra pocket cash.

Many consider piles of scrap metal worthless. However, collecting scrap metal can be a worthwhile endeavor. By learning how to spot scrap metal and determine its value, how to transport it, and how to negotiate the best price its possible to turn a profit. Recycling scrap metal also reduces space taken up in landfills.

1 Finding Scrap Metal

2 Put out an ad

Put out an ad in your local newspaper and Craigslist advertising a free scrap metal collection service. Steel, copper and aluminum are the most valuable metals, so focus mainly on collecting these three.

3 Collect scrap metal

Collect scrap metal from personal belongings of friends and family. It is surprising how much scrap metal is contained in the average home.

4 Drive around

Drive around on trash day scouting for discarded appliances which may contain valuable scrap metal. Look for washers, dryers, and even refrigerators, which all contain valuable scrap metal.

5 Contact local demolition and plumbing services

Contact local demolition and plumbing services. These companies often have scrap metal which they need taken from work sites.

6 Collect and transport all scrap metal

Collect and transport all scrap metal using the truck and trailer. Take into account the cost of gas and vehicle maintenance before deciding to make a trip.

7 Recycling The Scrap Metal

8 Find a convenient place

Find a convenient place to store all the collected scrap metal. This could be a garage or a rented storage space.

9 Call local scrap metal buyers

Call local scrap metal buyers asking for the rates they will offer to buy scrap metal.

10 Separate scrap metal from other components

Separate scrap metal from other components, such as copper wire or tubing common in household appliances using gloves and a pair of pliers. This is an essential step of recycling scrap metal, otherwise valuable internal components composed of copper will be valued much more cheaply.

11 Using the large scale

Using the large scale weigh the scrap metal that has been sorted.

12 Transport

Transport the scrap metal to the scrap metal buyer who offers the highest price per pound. Take into account the current market price of the scrap metal when negotiating.

Samuel Sohlden began his freelance writing career in 2007. His work appears on various websites, with articles focusing on science and health. In 2010 he attended the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in San Jose, Calif. Sohlden is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in microbiology from the University of Cincinnati.