FAQ

Frequently Asked Recycling Questions

Frequently Asked Recycling Questions

What are ferrous metals?

Ferrous metals contain iron and are generally magnetic. The word ferrous comes from the Latin word “Ferrum”, which means “containing iron”. Ferrous metals may be pure iron or they may be alloys of iron. Because quality stainless steel does not stick to a magnet, it is often classified as a nonferrous metal. However, stainless steel does contain iron and technically is a ferrous metal.

What are nonferrous metals?

Nonferrous metals do not contain iron and are generally non-magnetic. Some examples are aluminum, brass, copper, and lead.

Why don’t you buy iron or steel?

We chose to operate our shops in town for the convenience of our customers. As a result, residential areas are in close proximity to our shops. Because iron and steel are usually purchased by the ton, they have to be stored and handled outside. We generally try to keep all of our metals inside to keep our shops aesthetically pleasing to our neighbors. For your convenience, our shops accept (not purchase) appliances and small amounts of ferrous metals.

Do you buy copper wire with the insulation still on it?

Yes. There are several grades of insulated copper wire. See explanations below for detailed information.

What is #1 copper?

Copper solids that do not have impurities like paint or soldered joints. Some examples are copper pipe or bare copper wire. It is acceptable for #1 copper to have surface corrosion.

What is #2 copper?

Copper solids that have impurities on them such as tin coating, paint, or soldered joints. Some examples are tin coated copper wire and copper pipes that have soldered joints still attached.

What is #1 insulated copper wire?

Generally, it is insulated copper wire that contains solid (not stranded) copper wire at least the thickness of a pencil lead. One example is the wire used to run electricity in your house or apartment.

What is #2 insulated copper wire?

Generally, it is insulated copper wire that contains thin strands of copper wire. Some examples are extension cords or power cords for appliances.

What is mixed low grade copper wire or “#4” copper wire?

Insulated copper wire in which the amount of copper inside is minimal. Some examples are the wire in Christmas tree lights and telephone wire.

What is yellow brass?

Yellow brass generally is composed of 65% copper and 35% zinc. Brass is often used in plumbing parts such as faucets and has a yellow hue when it is filed on.

What is red brass?

Red brass generally is composed of 85% copper and 15% zinc. It also has many plumbing applications and has a reddish hue when it is filed on. Any red brass that has a chrome coating is paid according to yellow brass pricing.

Do you buy magnetic stainless?

No. Generally this is thrown in with sheet iron and pays similar to it. Since we cannot buy ferrous metals, we do not buy magnetic stainless.