How Is Scrap Metal Processed, and What Happens After It’s Recycled?

Recycling scrap metal is a great way to get a bit of extra money and help the environment at the same time. Taking the time to get rid of scrap metal is one of the best ways to keep it out of the landfill, and to ensure that you use our resources wisely.

How Is Scrap Metal Processed?

The first step to recycling scrap metal is sorting. The metal is going to be crushed, shredded and sorted using machines to do the work. The metal has to be crushed and shredded in order to make it into pieces that are a bit more manageable than the larger pieces. A great way to think of the recycling process is to look at an example.

Think about a wrecked car. The car will be stripped of things like plastic that the dash and seats are made of until there is nothing left but the metal frame. The frame is then crushed, compacted and shredded so that the different metals of the frame can be sorted. After the metal is crushed and sorted, it can move on to the next process.

After the metal has been shredded and sorted, it is often melted, and chemicals are added to help decontaminate and purify the metals so they can be used in other items. After the chemicals are added, the liquid metal will be solidified into sheets or metal bars. The bars or sheets can then be sold to other industries that can use them to make new products.

What are Recycled Metals Turned into?

Recycled metals can be used for nearly anything that you can imagine. They can be used to make new appliances, cars, building materials, household items, construction projects, and so much more. A great deal of the recycled metal in the United States is used for construction projects or for appliances.

Recycled metal can become nearly anything depending on where it is sold after it is processed. It can even be made into soda cans, tools, and so much more. Recycling is a great way to keep metal out of the landfill and to make sure that it is being used for something rather than just being buried.

Metal is a finite material and a finite resource; the earth is not making more of it. It is our job to make sure we use the resources we have been given wisely, and recycling does just that.