How Can You Recycle Metal & Get Paid for It?

17 March 2015
 Categories: Environmental, Blog

Are you into recycling metal, but you are not sure where to take it? Have you ever wondered how to turn scrap metal into money? If you want answers to any or all of these questions, keep reading.

Scrapyards are a great place to take the metal you collect. They ake all sorts of metal. In many cases, scrap yards even take metal that recycling programs won't take. The difference is in the value of that metal; not all metal is equally worthwhile to recycle.

How Can You Tell if You Have Valuable Metal?

You don't have to be a metallurgist to determine if you will get paid more or less for your metal. You can perform a simple test instead. Take a magnet and place it on your metal. If the magnet sticks, then you probably won't get paid that much for it. Metal that a magnet will stick to is called ferrous metal, and is commonly iron or steel.

If the magnet won't stick to the metal, then you have non-ferrous metal. Non-ferrous metal can be copper, brass, bronze, stainless steel, or even copper. All of these metals are sought after for recycling and can have much bigger payouts.

How Can You Maximize Your Payout at a Scrapyard?

The most obvious way to get a bigger payout when recycling your metal is to have more valuable metal. That being said, having a small amount of valuable metal may still not garner a lot of cash.

Scrap yards pay by the weight of the metal. So, if you have a very small amount of a valuable metal, you may get next to nothing for it. Having a large amount of valuable metal, but of different types, also won't help that much.

You need to be able to collect up a large amount of the same kind of metal to turn in for recycling to get the best payout. This means that you need to be able to distinguish the different metals before you take them to the scrap yard.

Often, you can figure out what metal you have by its color, texture, or even chemical properties (if you want to go that far). Copper, for example, will oxidize (form a greenish color on the surface) if it is cleaned with hydrochloric acid; you can make your own hydrochloric acid by mixing table salt and vinegar.

So does this mean you should ignore your ferrous metals? Absolutely not! For one thing, you are being environmentally conscious by recycling them. For another, even a non-valuable metal can have a nice payout if you have enough of it.

At the end of the day, recycling metal is a great way to be environmentally conscious. It is a nice bonus if you can get paid for the trouble you take to recycle, too. Learn more about getting paid to recycle by contacting local experts like American Northwest Recycling.