Get the Most Money Out of Scrap Metal

Get the Most Money Out of Scrap Metal

The old phrase “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is a reality for many people coined ‘scrappers’. These individuals take old, broken pieces of metal (termed ‘scrap’) and trade it in to recycling yards for cash. The exact amount per unit may rise or fall in accordance with demand, but there are a few simple tricks you can utilize to get the most money out of scrap metal.


Clean It Up

Recycling yards are willing to pay a little more for, say, copper wiring that has been stripped, versus copper wiring that is still insulated. This is because you’re saving them labor hours. They are then able to pass those savings down to the customer – you. Remove any plastic on large items, and gently strip the insulation off any wiring you have.


Separate by Type

Another way to have labor savings passed down is to separate your metals by type. Instead of receiving the lowest price for mixed metals, you can earn the price per unit of what you have. Aluminum, number one steel, tin, copper, and brass are common types of metal accepted by junk yards. If you aren’t sure how to identify the varying types of metal, you can either ask your local recycling yard or search the internet.


Deliver It Yourself

Instead of calling the recycling yard to come pick up your items, deliver them yourself. This is a big change in the amount of money you receive, because the only haul charge you will have is the gas you use. Obviously, you can’t use your little Ford Taurus to haul junk metal, so you will need to invest in a good pick up truck. The larger the truck bed and higher the tow capacity, the better – but a small single cab truck will do just fine to begin with.


Wait for A Big Load

As tempting as it may be to rush to the recycling yard as soon as you have a garbage can full of aluminum cans, try to resist. The longer you build up your scrap pile, the better. Your gas costs are going to be the same whether you earn $200 or $5. Dividing your haul into smaller loads will only lower your profits.


There you have it – a few very simple ways to get the most money out of scrap metal. Utilizing these tips, with a bit of hard work, can have you earning at your highest potential as a ‘scrapper’ in no time.