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.

Finding Scrap Metal

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.

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

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.

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

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.

Recycling The Scrap Metal

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

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

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.

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

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.

Things Needed

  • ['Calculator', 'Trailer hitch', 'Trailer', 'Truck', 'Large scale', 'Gloves', 'Plyers']


  • Collect scrap metal for recycling when the market price for scrap metal is high.


  • Take necessary precaution when handling and sorting scrap metal by wearing gloves and goggles.

    Transporting scrap metal can be hazardous. Never overload a trailer with scrap metal and always take necessary precaution when transporting.