You won’t get rich selling scrap metal, but it might be an easy way to make some extra money.
Maybe you’ve already found some scrap metal and you’re wondering what to do with it. Is it worth bringing to a scrapyard? Can I get money for scrap metal near me?
Perhaps you have easy access to large amounts of scrap metal. Could you make a side gig selling it?
This is worth considering, as scrap metal is often easy to obtain. People usually don’t want to bother with it and throw it out or give it away.
What’s more, they are not aware that you can make some good money for scrap metal.
Near me, the price of scrap metal often reaches interesting levels. Could it also be a source of extra money for you?
Should I Try to Get Money for Scrap Metal Near Me?
In 2018 the value of the scrap metal recycling industry in the US reached almost $27 billion.
What’s more, if you care for the planet’s future, you might be interested to learn that:
- Steel that Americans throw away could supply all the carmakers in the US on a constant basis.
- Energy saved on recycling one aluminum can could be used to run a television for three hours.
- Related air pollution is cut by 95% when cans are made from recycled aluminum.
- The energy that the United States saves every year by recycling steel could supply Los Angeles with electricity for ten years.
These are only a few metals recycling facts. Maybe they will motivate you to bring your scrap to the scrapyard.
What Is A Scrapyard
A scrapyard is a place where you can sell or buy such metals as:
- stainless steel
- and lead.
In other words, it’s a recycling center. The aim of a scrapyard is to reuse or repurpose the metal.
Scrap yards often dismantle old cars, electronics, and appliances they bought. Then they sell the metal to larger scrap brokers or refineries.
How To Find Scrap Yards Near Me
Check these methods to find a scrapyard in your area:
- Browse your local telephone book.
- Run a Google search. Try typing in phrases like:
- “junkyard near me”
- “metal recycling near me”
- “scrapyard near me open today”
- “local scrap yards”
- or “metal scrap yard near me.”
- Search for metal scrap yards using the iScrap app.
What are the Best Things to Scrap for Money
When looking for some metal to scrap, it’s good to know what will bring you the most cash. Here’s a list of items that are worth money at scrapyards:
When you want to junk a car, call all the scrapyards in your area to compare the prices. They may differ significantly.
Before selling a washing machine or dryer for scrap, it’s good to dismantle it first. Scrapyards pay quite a bit for appliances that are taken apart.
You should always ask what appliances does a certain scrapyard accept. You may expect to get cash for scrap metal from:
- water heaters
- air conditioners
- and microwaves.
Sometimes it’s a better idea to sell a broken motorcycle for parts then sell it for scrap. But if you go for the second option, don’t try to dismantle it yourself – they might refuse to accept it at the scrapyard.
Copper Pipe Or Tubing
Pipe or tubing is easy to find in places where people are renovating their kitchens or bathrooms. Copper pipes are one of the most valued scrap metals.
From my experience, each family owns at least a few broken bicycles. They gather dust in garages or basements waiting for better days when someone will fix them.
But these days may never come. Consider scrapping your bicycle. Earn money and redeem your space.
The most precious boats for scrapping are those made of aluminum, like for instance Jon boats, bass boats, flatboats or pontoons. Steel boats are also scrapable.
Many boats are made of fiberglass which is not valuable and you cannot scrap it. But several parts of it like engine brackets, bow rails, or fuel tanks can be stripped off and scrapped.
Stainless Steel Sinks
Stainless steel sinks can be worth quite a bit at a scrapyard. To receive the highest price for them, remove parts of steel, rubber, brass, and caulk.
At scrapyards you will get money for certain electronic items such as:
- cell phones
- power supplies
- TV boards
- hard drives
- medium grade boards
- high-grade boards
- disk drives.
Athough they do not weigh much, they are easy to come by. Later in this article, I give you ideas on how to collect them in large amounts.
Aluminum Pots & Pans
You can find some unusable examples of those in your own kitchen. To get the best aluminum price, remove any steel parts, like the handle.
Ceiling Fan Motors
Ceiling fan motors have copper inside and can weigh quite a bit. The blades of the fan are also worth checking. Under the wood, they may have cast aluminum.
Backup Batteries & Surge Protectors
You can find them in many home offices. The battery inside makes them relatively heavy and you can sell it at your local scrap yard for a few dollars.
A laptop’s life isn’t very long, especially if one uses it as an everyday computer. So you are likely to find some to scrap.
You should sell all the laptop’s parts separately at the scrap yard, so pull out things like:
- hard drive,
- RAM boards
- low-grade disc drive board,
- small motor for the fan.
Some scrap yards require that the batteries are removed.
Desktop towers weigh somewhere between 10-20 pounds, so you can sell them for quite good money at the scrapyard.
Check with your scrapyard if they accept them. To make some extra cash on them, you need to remove and separate units from inside.
Aluminum Lawn Chairs
Those lightweight patio chairs can be found in most backyards. To earn more, clean them: take a knife and cut off the weave, and remove the plastic handles.
Thanks to this you will have sheer aluminum to sell for at least 3 times more.
Christmas lights are probably not the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about scrapping metal.
But Christmas lights can be quite worthy, as there’s precious copper inside. When you get enough of them, they will give you a decent penny.
Where To Find Scrap Metal To Sell
The Endless Source of Scrap Metal
Many people own metal things they can’t or don’t want to repair. What’s more, they don’t want to bother with hauling them away. They are happy if someone comes and does it for them.
On Craigslist there’s a free section where people give away a lot of scrap metal every day. But remember, when hunting for scrap metal there you must respond quickly.
Occasionally, local businesses have scrap metal they want to get rid of. Ask if they wish to sell some metal parts. Sometimes they’ll even let you take away their scrap metal free of charge.
This approach is more suitable when it comes to small businesses, as larger companies will usually have a system for taking scrap metal away. However, it won’t hurt to ask, even in larger ones.
You could also look for scrap metal at farms and ranches, shooting ranges, construction and renovation sites, or hospitals and medical clinics.
Ask Your Boss
It depends on what field you work in, but maybe your company could be the source of scrap metal. In some companies, access to scrap metal is easy.
Are you in the construction business? You could make a deal with the management that you will collect scrap metal from them.
Or maybe there’s a soda machine in your company? Check if you could place a recycling container in the snack area to collect cans regularly.
This way you will help your company be more environmentally friendly.
Ask Friends and Relatives
When looking for scrap metal to junk, why not ask family, friends, and neighbors? People are busy these days.
When they want to take old stuff off their sight, they usually take it to the attic, basement, or garage and forget about it. If you pick it up from them, you’ll actually do them a favor.
Maybe some of your family members and friends drink canned beverages regularly. Make an agreement with them that you will collect the cans on a weekly basis.
Find Your Own Scrap Metal
You may search many places, but your garage, storage unit, or even your house may turn out to be the best source for scrap metal.
Maybe you had put some old appliances in your garage and forgot about it? Maybe there’s some old metal shelving waiting in your basement?
Look around and see what you can find. Incidentally, you may find other things that you can sell to make extra money.
How Much Money do You Get from Scrap Metal
Several factors have an influence on current scrap metal prices. Some of them are:
- the price of virgin metals,
- supply and demand,
- cost of energy and production.
For instance, when a lot of people build houses, copper prices rise. That’s because a huge amount of copper pipe and wire goes into a new house.
On the other hand, during a housing crisis, copper prices fall. Scrap prices also differ depending on the area.
Here are some average prices for scrap metal items:
- copper wire (bare) – $2 per pound
- aluminum cans – 40 cents per pound
- dryer (approx. 100 lbs.) – $9
- washing machine (approx.200 lbs) – $20
- oven (125 lbs) – $16
- cast iron bathtub (over 300 lbs)- $36
- full-size Gas BBQ (180 lbs) – $19.
How Can I Get the Most Money Selling Scrap Metal Near Me
Bring As Much Scrap Metal As Possible
A trip to a scrapyard with a few small items is not worth your time and energy. A better idea is to accumulate scrap metal for some time.
Having a big load of scrap metal gives you a bigger ability to negotiate.
Sort Your Metal
To get the most cash for your scrap metal, first, you should detect if you have ferrous or non-ferrous metal and separate the two types. To figure it out, use a magnet.
When the magnet sticks to the metal item, it’s made of ferrous metal. You won’t make huge money on it at the scrapyard, but at least it will be recycled in the right way.
If the magnet does not stick, you have a non-ferrous metal. Non-ferrous metals are valuable to recycle and will bring you more cash. Non-ferrous metals include:
- stainless steel
- and bronze
Separate all different kinds of metal to get the most money. You will earn more on, for example, copper, if you sell it by itself instead of selling it with other materials. Label the metals you have.
Next, sort the metals you have by cleanliness. For instance, they will pay you more for clean aluminum.
But sometimes you are not able to clean everything, like strip Teflon layer from frying pans.
Use the Best Tool to Compare Scrap Yards
The best way to be up-to-date with current scrap metal prices is to use the iScrap App. It’s a great tool made by scrappers, where you can also find a vast listing of the best scrap yards in the US.
Get Money For Scrap Metal
Some say that money is lying in the streets. With scrap metal, it is literally the case. Often you don’t have to invest any money to sell that commodity.
You just need to be cunning, have some knowledge, and be ready to make the effort.
Think of places where you could get scrap metal. Make a list. Plan your metal route. When you are going somewhere, pick as much scrap metal as you can on the way. You might want to look for used car batteries too, there are a lot of places to sell old car batteries for cash.
Find the scrapyard that will pay you the most for what you have. And then, enjoy the extra money.