You might be amazed at how much scrap metal is worth — everything from cables and wires to old alloy wheels, fridge motors, and much more can be sold to a scrap metal dealer for cash.
Of course, we mean “cash” in the metaphorical sense — it’s illegal to sell scrap metal in cash these days, but some popular products might get you a nice electronic payout.
If you work with junk on a daily basis or if you’re just performing some home improvements, these are the objects to keep an eye out for.
The Most Valuable Metals
If you want to sell scrap metal for cash, it’s always best to know the most valuable metals out there.
It can be easy to get confused about this part, as some metals are both valuable and extremely common.
Aluminium, for example, is an excellent material – but it’s valuable only in certain forms.
Copper is more precious, of course, and there are some other metals that are very valuable but not always present in a household.
Here’s a quick rundown of some of the most valuable metals you can sell to a scrap metal dealer.
One of the most valuable metals in the world, Gold is pricy, and its status as a precious metal means that it’s pretty rare in a household setting.
The yellow metal is mainly used in jewellery and electronics, and the price is set by the market.
The price of Gold is very volatile, but it has a very high value per ounce – meaning that even a small amount of the metal can be worth a pretty penny.
Steel is an essential metal – it’s found in everything from cookware to cars, and it’s a vital part of our infrastructure.
Of course, steel is pretty standard in a household, and it’s a good idea to sell any steel that you’re not using – it’s a highly valuable metal and will fetch a lot with a scrap metal merchant.
If you have old steel appliances in your home – like cookers and fridges – these can command a reasonable price and steel pipes and other construction materials.
Copper is an essential metal that’s used in electronics and in construction. It’s not a rare metal in and of itself, but the quality, purity, and quantity all make a difference to the price.
If you have an old copper piping system in your home, this can be sold for a reasonable price – and it’s also a valuable metal in a scrap metal dealer’s eyes.
Certain electronics such as wiring, motors and transformers are also made of copper, and they can all be sold for decent money.
Aluminium is an essential metal that’s used in large quantities in the modern world. It’s much less valuable than many of the other metals on this list, but it’s still a valuable metal to sell if you have any around.
Aluminium is everywhere, and it’s often recycled from other items, so if you have any aluminium in your home, then you’ll be able to sell it for a reasonable price.
Refrigerator motors and transformers made of aluminium are also excellent for recycling – and they’re valuable to a scrap dealer.
Lead is another key metal that’s used in the industrial and construction industries. It’s not quite as valuable as the other metals on this list, but it’s still a useful material to have in your home.
Lead is found in many items, including batteries, paint, and plumbing. If you have any lead in your home, then you can sell it for a decent price, as long as it’s pure.
Titanium is a very important metal that’s used in a lot of modern materials. It’s a fantastic metal, and it’s not too rare either – but it’s still valuable at the right price.
Titanium is found in a lot of sporting goods and tools, and it’s also used in the aerospace industry.
Brass is a little bit less valuable than some of the other metals on this list, but it’s still an important material to have around.
Brass is a mix of copper and zinc, and it’s used in a lot of household objects.
It’s pretty easy to find brass in your home – the bathroom is the most common place to find the metal, and brass taps, radiators, and electrical fittings can all be sold to a scrap metal dealer.
What Determines the Price of Scrap Metal?
So, how are these scrap metal prices determined? There are several factors, just a few of which are listed below:
1. The Life Cycle of Scrap Metal
Whilst the market price of new copper may look high, it’s unlikely that you will receive that particular amount at a scrap yard because scrap copper is most certainly getting towards the end of its life cycle.
2. The Quantity of Scrap Metal
The larger the quantity of scrap metal that a yard takes in, the better your chances of negotiating a better price. The same goes for a large amount of scrap that is of a similar type. Yards are always looking for large quantities of a specific type of material or different types of material.
3. The Type of Scrap Metal
The type of scrap metal that you are trying to sell to a yard will always be factored into the final price. The price of an item such as aluminium is much higher than that of steel.
4. The Location of the Scrap Metal
The cost a yard is willing to pay for scrap metal can vary depending on its location. Those located in areas where there is a high volume of scrap metal, such as close to a city, will offer a lower price than those located in an area where there is less scrap to be found.
5. International Trade
The overseas market can have a significant impact on scrap metal pricing. Countries that import a lot of scrap metal, such as China and India, can have an impact on global scrap metal pricing when their demand fluctuates. Prices will climb when these countries desire to acquire more scrap metal. Scrap metal prices may decline if demand for scrap in certain nations falls. If importing nations’ rules change, it may impact how much scrap metal they acquire, which may affect the price you receive for your scrap metal.
If you have scrap metal that you want to sell for cash, then you’re well-served to check some of the different options out there.
If you’re not sure where to start your search, it makes sense to sell to one of the more established companies.
There’s nothing wrong with selling to a private buyer, but you don’t always get a great deal, and you might end up having to sell to someone who doesn’t have a lot of interest in the rules of trading.
It’s always a good idea to check the reputation of the scrapyard in question before you commit.
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