Recycling: A Beginners Guide

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Types of scrap metal

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Scrap metal may seem like junk, but you can recycle it to earn a few extra bucks. You not only do your part to save Mother Earth by keeping metals out of landfills, but you also get some extra cash. There are different types of scrap metal, including the following:


Aluminium is an easily identifiable metal due to its silver colour. It is a non-ferrous type of metal, which makes it valuable. However, aluminium prices fluctuate daily; hence, it is advisable to call ahead to ascertain the amount before dropping off your aluminium products. Due to its non-ferrous nature, it can be recycled without compromising its chemical essence. The most common types of aluminium around the household are soda cans, beer cans and foil wrap. It is also present in items such as window frames and gutters. Instead of throwing out these items, you can collect them and sell them in bulk at a scrap yard.


Steel is a ferrous metal. You can identify steel by using a magnet as magnet sticks to steel. Steel is present in a variety of household items such as kitchen items, cabinets and chairs. Due to its wide availability, you will not get a lot of money for selling steel. This is unless you have at least a thousand pounds, which is close to impossible.


Copper is a valuable metal to sell to a scrap yard. You can find copper wire in products such as appliances and computer cords. Note that not all cables are the same, and you should check with the scrap yard if they accept an insulated or non-insulated wire.

Scrap electronics

It seems as if every year, tech companies release upgraded devices, and some people have the need to keep up with the latest trends. Keeping up with the latest tech trends can be expensive—not to mention, you will have a lot of old devices lying around. Also, with the adoption of streaming and cable TV, electronic devices such as DVD players and VCRs have become archaic. You can sell these products to a scrap yard as they contain trace elements of iron, copper and plastic. However, you should check with the scrap yard on what type of electronics they accept. Some do not take electronics such as TVs and printers, as they contain mostly plastics. It would be a waste to transport these electronics to the scrap yard only to find they do not want them.