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Your First Trip to the Scrapyard: FAQs

by Daryl Simmmons

You've been looking for ways to earn extra money, and you were told that collecting metal and bringing it to the scrapyard was a lucrative option. Now, you're off to collect metal—but you have a few questions about your first scrapyard trip. Keep reading to discover the answers.

What kinds of metal should you collect?

Most scrapyards accept all kinds of metal. They generally pay more for steel, iron, and copper than for aluminum, but you can certainly bring in the aluminum; it's worth something.

Do you need to separate the metal from other items?

You don't absolutely have to. A scrapyard will accept a refrigerator, an oven, or another item that contains metal. However, they will pay you a lot less for this item then they would for the clean, separated metal. if you separate the metal for them, then they won't have to put the effort into doing so themselves. Most scrappers follow this guideline: if it takes then less than a half hour to take apart, they do. Otherwise, they let the scrapyard do it.

How much can you bring at once?

Most scrapyards don't have a limit as to how much scrap you can bring at one time. Fill up the bed of your pickup. If you have a trailer, pick that up too. You will save yourself time by taking everything in one trip rather than making several trips.

Is it legal to pick things up from the side of the road?

As long as you are sure it has been placed out to the trash and is not sitting there for sale, you can go ahead and take it! If you do not pick it up and take it to the scrapyard, someone else will. If the owner of the home is around when you pull over, it is polite to ask if you can take the item—even if it seems obvious you can.

Will the scrapyard pick things up that are too big?

If you have a vehicle or tractor that needs to be scrapped, call around to a few scrapyards. Some of them do offer pickup services, although they will pay you less for the item if they have to pick it up. If you can't find a scrapyard that picks up big items, you can rent a trailer and take the item yourself and probably still earn a little cash.

Reach out to a business like Gutterman Iron & Metal Corp for more information about working with scrapyards.