How to Make Money on Scrap Metal


How to Make Money on Scrap Metal. If you have a lot of scrap metal around, you can often sell it to a scrap yard as scrap metal. Depending on the current demand and condition of the metal, you can usually make pretty good money off of the scrap metal. Scrap yards will often haul scrap metal off for you while putting some money in your pocket.

Things You'll Need

  • Hammer
  • Chisel
  • Safety glasses
  • Gloves
  • Shop file

Determine the type of metal. Usually a visual inventory can identify a metal. Otherwise you will need to do some tests on it. There are two types of tests to help.

Look at the color. This is called the color test. Reddish brown is copper. White could be zinc, magnesium, aluminum, tin or lead. White and silvery is white cast iron.

Use the chipping test. Use a chisel to remove a small piece of the metal and examine the resulting chip. Gray cast-iron chips are smooth and brittle. Cast steel chips easily, and the chips can be continuous if desired. Aluminum chips are continuous but leave a saw edge. White cast iron is brittle and breaks into small fragments. Malleable iron produces rough chips. High-carbon steel is a lighter color at edges than mild steel, and the chips can be continuous.

Identify your scrap metal, then go to a local scrap yard. Some scrap yards yield higher prices for different metals so you will need to call around and ask them their rates. Some may haul junk for you.

Take your metal to the scrap yard and collect your money.

Tips & Warnings

  • Scrap yards can usually identify the metal for you if you are having trouble, but it is a good idea to have an idea of what the metal is first.
  • When chipping metal, be sure to wear safety glasses and gloves. If the metal you are chip testing has a higher carbon content than your chisel, then it will chip your chisel instead of the metal being tested.

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