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Scrapping Aluminum Wire - Encore Recyclers - Garland, TX

Aluminum Wire and How to Scrap It

If you scrap often, chances are you’ve come across some aluminum wire. Wire is one of the best ways to get the most value for each load of scrap you bring into the yard, because it’s easy to work with and it’s easy to find a lot of it at once.

As much as you hear about copper wire, aluminum wire doesn’t seem to get as much attention. While many of the basic principles are the same as far as scrapping it goes, it’s worth noting the differences to ensure you get the most for your scrap!

What Is Aluminum Wire?

Aluminum wire is electrical wire made from aluminum. It’s become more and more popular in recent years because it runs a bit cheaper than copper wire. Although it’s not quite as conductive as copper, it’s also attractive to electricians and builders because it can be a bit easier to work with. That’s because of its greater flexibility as well as its lower pricetag.

Just like copper, steel, and any other kind of wire, aluminum wire has advantages and disadvantages both for the electricians who install it in the first place and for scrappers who get it when it comes time to recycle. That’s why it’s important to know how to identify aluminum wire and get the most for it at your local yard. 

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How to Tell the Difference Between Aluminum and Stainless Steel - Encore Recyclers - Dallas, TX

How to Tell the Difference Between Aluminum and Stainless Steel

Stainless steel and aluminum are both worth collecting, but we all know that their values are different—and, of course, you’re going to get more money for each scrap haul if you sort different types of scrap out from one another. However, telling the difference between aluminum and stainless steel can be very challenging, especially when you’re out in the field without a ton of tools to help you in identifying different metals. Here’s a short, helpful article on how to tell the difference.

General Differences between Aluminum and Stainless Steel

Aluminum is a great deal lighter and more malleable than stainless steel, while stainless steel is generally much stronger. The malleability of aluminum, but its overall lower strength, comes from the fact that it is a much softer metal. This will be important later, as it’s the key factor in the handy tip we’ll give you in the next section of this post.

Both of these metals are so useful because they’re so different—each of them is better than the other for a certain application.

For example, stainless steel‘s strength and corrosion resistance make it ideal for use in the construction field. Aluminum, on the other hand, is one of the primary materials used to make airplanes, because it is so lightweight—obviously a big consideration when you’re making something that’s intended to fly!

The challenge when it comes to identifying aluminum or stainless steel, though, is that they look so similar. A lot of scrappers don’t know how to tell the difference out in the field. However, we’ve found a simple test that a lot of our top scrappers use to determine which is which—and the best part is, it’s very easy to do.

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Fall Scrapping Season - Dallas and Garland, Texas

Fall is the Season for Scrapping

The weather is starting to get a little cooler as summer winds down—and that can mean big opportunities for your scrapping operation!

Here in Dallas, the cooler weather means the idea of spending some more time outdoors and hunting for scrap might look a little more enjoyable than it did in the summer. On top of that, there are a lot of unique fall scrapping opportunities!

Tools, Furniture, and Equipment

Many homeowners see autumn as a time to replace old lawncare equipment and outdoor furniture. Some of these homeowners may not want to haul these heavy items themselves—meaning you can be sure to get great scrap by offering a free or cheap haul-away service in your area.

Lawncare equipment such as mowers can be very lucrative, especially if you take the time to dismantle and clean them, separating the different metals out from one another. In addition to being more common during the fall, they’re a lot more fun to take apart once the temperature outside drops a few degrees!

Even outdoor furniture can be worth your while. It’s frequently very easy to disassemble, and generally has a good amount of metal weight for durability. 

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Consider an Aluminum Can Recycling Drive for Charity

Consider a Recycling Drive for Charity

If you’re familiar with what we do at Encore Recyclers, you know you can make money selling scrap metal in Dallas. However, there’s a great piece of information you may be missing out on: with Encore, you can make money not only for yourself, but for the non-profit of your choice by setting up a recycling drive for charity.

Have you ever run or perhaps even worked for a charity? Have you volunteered for a nonprofit organization? If so, you probably know how hard it is to raise money for charity organizations, no matter how good or universally supported the cause is.

If bake sales, silent auctions, and simply asking for donations aren’t cutting it, or if you want to mix things up at your charity (or do a good deed by raising capital for a group that has helped your community), a recycling drive for charity may be your best bet.

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Scrap Metal Hidden in Your House - Dallas, TX

Scrap Metal Hidden in Your House

The easiest way to get started as a scrapper is to start scrapping materials in your own home. You can learn many of the skills necessary to becoming a successful scrapper, without the added difficulty of looking for and asking permission to take recyclable materials.

Most people are surprised when they find out how much potentially valuable recyclable scrap metal is in their own home—and love making a positive impact on the environment while also earning a little extra cash.

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How and Where to Recycle ANYTHING in Dallas!

Where to Recycle Anything in Dallas

Luckily for all of us who live in the city of Dallas, it’s easy to recycle here. It’s also free—and in fact, you can even make money recycling, depending on what materials you have and how you recycle them.

On the other hand, recycling rules can be complex in any city. On top of that, many people recycle the wrong things, or throw out things they could in fact recycle.

This article will teach you how to recycle anything in Dallas (or nearly anything!)—and how to help protect our environment by doing so.

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How to Recycle Your Scrap Metal for the Best Price - Dallas, TX

Getting Ready to Recycle Your Scrap Metal

After you’ve finished a demolition or other project, you may wish to recycle your scrap metal. Scrap metal is not biodegradable, so it’s ideal for recycling. And while Encore Recyclers will buy your metal when mixed together, you may be able to achieve a better price for your scrap by separating out your scrap metals and doing a little prep work, such as removing plastic, rubber, or other contaminants. Read on to learn how to best separate and prep your scrap materials.

Clean your scrap metal

First, remove any contaminants, such as dirt, plastic, rubber, or other metals. The consumer mills that we sell to in bulk will only take clean, uncontaminated scrap metal that they can put directly into their furnaces. If we receive scrap that is free of contaminants, we are better able to pass the labor savings onto you.

For cars and other vehicles

Most scrap companies, including Encore Recyclers, will accept entire battery assemblies and entire catalytic converters. Electric motor parts can also be recycled. The field windings (parts with copper wire wound around) should be separated out from the iron and steel for the best price (armatures are very difficult to separate and might need to be chiseled out). The same goes for starters and alternators. Copper or brass radiators from older cars are valuable for scrap; you can identify copper by its bluish-green patina or by scraping the flanges of the radiator and looking for the reddish hue characteristic of copper. Aluminum radiators common in newer cars are not as valuable as coppers ones, but are still worth recycling. Heater cores are brass or aluminum radiators that can be recycled as scrap metal. With all of these parts, you can maximize the value of your scrap by removing pieces of plastic, insulation, and extraneous metals.

Separate ferrous from non-ferrous metals

Iron, steel and other ferrous metals are magnetic. For smaller pieces of metal, you may even be able to lift them out of piles of scrap metal with a large magnet.

Separate non-magnetic, stainless steel

Stainless steel is alloy containing chromium. It has a dull shine and is heavier than chrome- or nickel-plated steel. Sometimes, it may be slightly magnetic. If you do find stainless steel that’s magnetic, you should add it to your ferrous metals.

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Best prices for aluminum cans and scrap metal - Dallas, TX

Recycling Aluminum Cans

Did you know that aluminum used to be considered such a rare and precious commodity that Napoleon Bonaparte’s nephew, had a rattle and other toys made of aluminum, as a status symbol? Even though aluminum is the third most abundant element in the Earth’s crust, at the time it was extremely difficult to produce. In fact, aluminum was selected as the material to use for the 100-ounce capstone of the Washington Monument in 1884, a time when one ounce cost the daily wage of a common worker on the project. The capstone, which was set in place on December 6, 1884, was the largest single piece of cast aluminum  at the time.

When you think of recycling, aluminum cans are often the first item to come to mind. It makes sense, since aluminum cans are perhaps the most sustainable beverage container available. Not only are they extremely lightweight and easily stacked (try stacking glass bottles!) for efficiency in transport, but they are easily reclaimed. According to the Aluminum Association, approximately 70% of every aluminum consists of recycled aluminum.

Here are some additional facts about aluminum cans that you might not have known:

  • More than 50 percent of the aluminum cans produced is recycled.
  • A used aluminum can is recycled and back on the grocery shelf as a new can in as little as 60 days.
  • Every minute, an average of 113,204 aluminum cans are recycled.
  • Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to keep a 100-watt bulb burning for almost four hours or run your television for three hours.
  • Tossing away an aluminum can wastes as much energy as pouring out half of that can’s volume of gasoline.
  • Aluminum is a durable and sustainable metal: Two-thirds of the aluminum ever produced is still in use today.

Other types of aluminum, such as siding, gutters, car components, storm window frames, and lawn furniture can also be recycled.

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