Answers to Some Commonly Asked Questions About Selling Scrap Metal for Money

If you're like most people, you may have a garage full of older metal items that could actually be taken to a scrap yard, or you may see lots of discarded pieces of metal on the curb on trash day and wonder how to recycle them. If you want to sell scrap metal for a living, then you'll need to invest in a good vehicle and know the rates of nearby scrap yards, but if you're looking to bring in items only on occasion, you might note a few commonly asked questions about the process. Be sure to go over these with a scrap yard before you show up at their gate so you know what to expect.

1. Can refrigerators, air conditioners and freezers be recycled?

This will depend on the scrap yard, but don't be surprised to find that many such yards won't take these items. This is because the Freon and other materials inside the units are typically considered to be hazardous and need special handling and disposal. This work can be costly, even more so than the money the scrap yard might get for the metal and other materials of the unit. If you can't find a scrap yard that takes these items, you might call your local city dump and see about having them picked up or dropping them off as needed.

2. Is insulated copper wire acceptable?

Copper is very valuable because it's so rare, which is why many scrap yards pay a premium price for it. However, be prepared to see a lower price with insulated copper wire since the scrap yard will need to remove the insulating material. The price they pay you may also be lower, as there may not be as much actual copper inside the insulating material as you expected.

3. Can full cars be recycled?

Many scrap yards take full cars but may require that you drain the oil and other fluids first. If so, you will need to ensure you have these fluids recycled properly. Other scrap yards may take the entire car as is but will pay you less money if it still has fluids in its parts. Typically, the condition of the car itself is not a factor; a scrap yard doesn't generally care if the car still runs or not, as they will simply be pulling it apart to recycle its parts, not reselling it to a car dealer.

For more information, contact a local scrap metal company like Pabani Metals