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Scrap Metal Recycling: Buying – Selling – Collecting – Distributing

Posted on 25 June 2015

Scrap metal recycling is an enterprise for both scrap collectors and scrap dealers. The materials are valuable, and in demand, but it’s important to determine if collecting is going to be occasional or if it’s going to be a serious business endeavor. In general, scrap metal collecting and recycling focuses on the more common metals – copperaluminum, steel, brass, and iron. And for the most part, the local scrap yard will be prepared to give immediate cash for scrap that is high quality. 

All depending on quantity and quality, scrap metal will always fetch a better price when properly sorted, separated and free of impurities. The ferrous metals are the magnetic ones, like iron and steel – always welcome at the scrap yard. The non-ferrous metals are the non-magnetic ones, like aluminum, copper, brass and bronze – more valuable than ferrous metals and likely to fetch more money. Prices are easily found on the Internet, and the astute collector is always well informed.

For some, collecting scrap metal may be purely about recycling the metals and redirecting from landfill.  But when it comes to a business enterprise, there is much more to consider: where to reliably source the scrap; how to transport and deliver; and most importantly, how to ensure a regular and ongoing supply of scrap. It’s a business model that can work on all levels, and can be a win-win for those who generate the scrap, for those who collect, and for those who process.

Collecting and recycling “end-of-life” home appliances (sometimes known as “white” appliances) has become very relevant in recent years. In fact, many provinces have legislation that keeps all of these appliances out of the garbage system. For a serious collector, it means that “end-of-life” home appliances are a viable source of scrap metal, and valuable to the scrap dealer. For every large appliance both the outside sheet metal and the inside mechanics are full of precious scrap.

Scrap metal is considered a commodity. It could be domestic household waste; it could be steel from scrap vehicles; or it could be scrap aluminum from a construction site or local renovation project. Whatever the source, it’s usually in high demand locally and around the world. And even though prices fluctuate along with world markets, the top recyclables like copper, aluminum and steel are always welcome at the scrap dealer. But again, better quality brings a better price.

In the end, it’s important for the serious scrap collector to have a solid business relationship with a reputable scrap metal dealer. It will be a relationship with serious business advantages. A good scrap dealer can advise on prices and trends – on properly preparing scrap for processing – and on what they need most in terms of current market demand. Simply put, a really good working relationship will translate into a better bottom-line.

Finally, it’s key for every scrap metal collector to be informed and up-to-date. Always keeping on top of scrap prices and market demands will make the difference between success and failure.

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