What Are the Most Valuable Sources of Scrap Metal?

For many manufacturing and industrial businesses, recycling can be little more than a necessary evil — a final task to minimize expenses before closing out jobs. That said, not all scrap metal is created equal, and knowing what to keep an eye out for can help you maximize your profit when it comes time to recycle your manufacturing and industrial metal waste. Particularly if you don’t have the time or manpower to recycle all your scrap metal, knowing which ones are most valuable can help you determine how to best use your time.  

What Are the Most Valuable Scrap Metals?

Knowing what the most valuable scrap metals are will help you focus on what items will get you the most value at a scrap yard. While the cost of scrap metals is always in flux depending on your location and on national availability, certain metals as a rule are more valuable than others. 

Ferrous metals (those that contain iron) are recycled in greater quantities, but non-ferrous ones tend to still be readily available if you know where to look, and they are much more valuable. Here are the three types of metals to keep an eye out for: 

  • Copper. On average, copper is the most valuable metal for scrappers. While the value shifts, it is usually worth several dollars per pound, making it several times more valuable than other metals. And because copper is used in a multitude of manufacturing and industrial applications, you may be sitting on a pile of hard cash. 
  • Brass. Brass is far from a precious metal, but it tends to have good value for scrappers because of its relative scarcity. Additionally, the cost of manufacturing brass is higher than that of other metals due to the components of this compound (copper, zinc, etc.), so recycling it saves manufacturers a lot of money. 
  • Aluminum. It might be tempting to overlook aluminum, especially because of how prevalent it is, but that’s the exact reason it makes for such good scrap. Aluminum’s price per pound value is low, but because you can get massive quantities of it with ease, depending on the nature of your business, you can make a pretty penny quickly. 

Now that you know the metals to look out for, be sure to stay up to date with the most current scrap metal prices by signing up for our pricing updates

Where Are These Metals Most Readily Found?

If you’re in a business where scrap metal is plentiful, such as construction or manufacturing, knowing what to prioritize for scrapping can be a major give your bottom line a good boost. 

When it comes to copper, pipes, utility lines, and wires are good sources for the scrap yard. Additionally, copper is commonly found in any sort of electronics environment. We’ll take copper in any form, whether it’s pipes, shavings or old roofing! 

As far as brass goes, your supply might be a little harder to come by, but there are still plenty of places to find it. As a general rule, if a door has a lock or doorknob, there is probably brass involved. If you’re working in the automotive industry, watch out for radiators or door handles. You can also find brass in pipes and faucets, so always set aside plumbing materials for salvage. 

Aluminum will be found in a lot of the same sites as the other metals and is likely to be the easiest to locate. If you’re not sure what a metal is, chances are good that it’s aluminum. In addition to pipes and wiring, aluminum is commonly found in roofing, gutters, door and window frames, wheels and rims. 

Get Help from the Recycling Experts at Gardner Metal Recycling 

Whatever scrap you’re looking to get rid of, Gardner Metal Recycling is here to help make the process go smoothly. If you’re closing out a work site or job, whether you have leftover materials sitting in the garbage or old equipment, there’s no reason you can’t make some extra cash during the cleanup process.  

And if you don’t have the energy for recycling at the end of a job, we can arrange a pickup for your scrap metal. If you’re planning to be on a work site for a while, we can also set you up with a recycling container to fill as you go; when it’s full we will pick it up and write you a check! Time is money, and so is your scrap metal — and we’ll help you get the best scrap price in Austin.

To learn more about recycling scrap and get a price quote for your scrap metal recycling, contact us today.