Why Aluminum Recycling is More Important Than You May Think
Aluminum is a soft, malleable metal that is used in everything from the tinfoil in your kitchen to the aerospace program. While it is one of the most common elements, it is not available in pure form in nature; there is no such thing as an aluminum vein or nugget.
Aluminum was not commonly used until the 20th century because the method used to extract aluminum from bauxite ore wasn’t invented until 1888. This method, called the Bayer process, uses a lot of energy and creates a lot of waste. Aluminum processing produces sulfur oxide and nitrogen oxide, chemicals that, when mixed with the water in the atmosphere, cause acid rain. It takes five tons of bauxite (which is usually strip-mined) to make one ton of aluminum; the remaining mud is toxic and can contaminate water supplies if not properly disposed of.
However, once extracted, aluminum is 100% recyclable and can be melted and reused repeatedly with no decrease in quality. The aluminum recycling process uses only 5% of the energy that making new aluminum requires, and produces 95% less greenhouse gas. Recycling just 1 ton of aluminum saves 9 tons of CO2 emissions.
Aluminum is entirely recyclable – if people collect their aluminum scrap and take it to a recycling center. Aluminum used in construction as well as automotive manufacturing has a very high rate of recycling – some estimates are over 85%. But less than half of aluminum used for cans in the United States is recycled, and when you get to aluminum used for household purposes it’s even lower. The aluminum that we throw away instead of recycling worth millions of dollars a year.
Bring your aluminum to Scrap Mart Metals – help keep the environment healthy and receive reimbursement.
Recycling Made Easy with Drive-Thru Aluminum Can Recycling!
We have drive-thru’s for burgers, coffee and even dry cleaning. Why not for aluminum can recycling? If convenience has held you back from helping to reducing landfill waste, you no longer have that excuse. So gather your cans, load up the car and drive-thru your local recycling center with ease. Recycling cans really matters. Here’s why you should do it:
- 100 billion aluminum cans, on average, are sold in the U.S. annually.
- About 50% of aluminum cans end up in landfills, meaning about 50 billion every year.
- 50 billion aluminum cans in the garbage means about 1.5 million tons of extra landfill waste each year.
- Landfill cans not only contribute to landfill waste but also contribute to industrial pollution because trashed cans have to be replaced with new cans.
- New cans require virgin materials. Acquiring virgin materials contributes to environmental destruction.
- Aluminum production from virgin materials emits millions of tons of greenhouse gases annually. Aluminum is a disproportionate polluter, accounting for more than 14% of greenhouse gases of all products manufactured as virgin material based replacement products.
When Can Aluminum Be Recycled?
There is no age limit on old cans. A person can collect cans for weeks or years. It makes no difference.
How Much Is Recycled?
Aluminum is one of the most sustainable metals. It is 100% recyclable. It can also be recycled over and over. It is one of the most easiest metals to recycle. That bag of cans you drop off at the drive-thru will be ready for a retailer’s shelf within 60 days.
It has never been easier to recycle aluminum cans than it is right now. Whether you are an environmentally aware individual or a business who takes community responsibility seriously, load up and drive-thru at Scrap Mart Metals. Contact us with your questions and find out all the details on why aluminum can recycling can help save the world while putting a little change in your pocket.
How to Get the Most out of Aluminum Siding Recycling
For the home remodeler — whether a DIY weekend warrior or a pro contractor — discarding the scrap materials from the demolition portion of the job turns into a distracting and expensive side project. Removing a stucco wall provides no joy in the cleanup and disposal, for example. But a few building materials are in high demand even when ripped, crushed or twisted. Aluminum siding is a great example of a waste product with enduring value.
Aluminum siding recycling at Scrap Mart Metals offers a rewarding strategy for disposal of torn down siding — whether by the truckload or even by the box of small segments and trimmings. We designed our new drive-through and drop-off non-ferrous metal recycling center so we can offer top dollar payouts for aluminum siding.
Bringing in scrap aluminum siding is easy. One tip that can aid in recycling efficiency is to check for ferrous or non-ferrous metal. Ferrous is just a word for metal with iron in it, so you can easily detect ferrous metal with any magnet. If you pull down a gutter with the aluminum siding, for example, it’s a simple matter to check to see if a magnet — even something as simple as a souvenir refrigerator magnet — will cling to it. Window frames, gutters and downspouts are often made of aluminum, so after the magnet check, bring them in with the siding. Prioritize your aluminum scrap materials first, and put ferrous scraps into a side collection to take to a different part of our facility. This makes the process as efficient and rewarding as possible.
No matter what your level of experience with recycling, we’re happy to assist you in determining what you have. We work with businesses, homeowners and even organizations that do scrap fundraising drives. We enjoy helping people learn that recycling can pay off in many ways beyond protecting the planet we all love. Contact us and we’ll answer any questions you may have about scrap metals from your remodeling or tear-down project.
The Benefits Of Aluminum Can Recycling
Do you know the benefits of aluminum can recycling to you and the environment? Here are some amazing facts.
- Stanford University tells us: A ton of soda cans made with recycled aluminum saves an astonishing 21,000 kilowatt hours by reducing the virgin bauxite ore that would have to be mined, shipped, and refined. That is a 95% energy savings.
- Recycling just one aluminium beverage can, saves enough energy to power a television for three hours.
- One can could be recycled eight times in a year, saving enough energy to make 160 new cans.
- A recycled six-pack of aluminum cans could save enough energy to drive a car five miles.
- Recycling aluminum produces 95% fewer greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), than manufacturing new aluminum. That is a GHG saving equivalent to taking 900,000 cars off the road for 12 months.
- Recycling 1 ton of aluminum saves the equivalent in energy of 2,350 gallons of gasoline. This is equivalent to the amount of electricity used in the average home for 10 years.
- Americans earn about $1 billion a year recycling aluminum cans.
- The average American family recycles 150 six packs of aluminum cans a year.
- 67% of aluminum cans are recycled.
You can help the environment, and earn money at the same time. Recycling the aluminum cans in your home or neighborhood is as easy as not throwing your aluminum cans away. Take them to a recycling center and get paid. Recycle as a group, or recycle aluminum cans as a fund-raiser for your favorite charity.
Contact us and we’ll help you get started recycling.
How to Maximize Profits When Recycling Aluminum
From golf clubs and patio furniture to car rims and bike frames, there are many items made of aluminum. This versatile metal is strong, durable, and yet incredibly lightweight. While you probably won’t earn enough to quit your day job, you can put some extra cash in your pockets by recycling aluminum cans in St. Louis. Check out the following tips to maximize your profits
Try to get into the habit of crushing your aluminum cans before bagging them. Doing so allows you to squeeze more cans into your bags, meaning each bag will weigh more. And heavier bags translate into more money at the Scrap Mart. You can crush cans by squeezing them with your bare fingers, stomping on them with your feet, or by using a can-smashing machine (yes, that’s a real thing).
Wait for Higher Rates
Just like the value of gold and silver fluctuates, so does that of aluminum. Most people blindly recycle their aluminum cans without knowing the rates. A smarter approach, however, is to keep an eye on aluminum prices for 1-2 weeks, as this will give you a better idea of what’s good selling price for your respective area. You can then recycle your aluminum cans when the rates are high.
Skip the Plastic Bottles
Of course, you should buy cans of sodas instead of 20-ounce and 2-liter bottles. While plastic bottles are recyclable, most facilities don’t pay for it. This doesn’t mean you should toss your plastic in the trash, rather choose aluminum cans over plastic bottles with given the choice.
Think Beyond Cans
Cans aren’t the only item that’s made of aluminum. Here are some other items that are frequently made of aluminum:
- Aluminum foil
- Sink faucets
- Screen doors
- Cooking pots and pans
- TV antennas
For the best rates on recycled aluminum, copper, brass, steel and other metals, contact us today.