How To Recycle Copper Scrap

By Jay White

June 7, 2015   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man

Copper Scrape

Industrial aluminum, brass and copper are valuable commodities to manufacturing industries. As such, mining companies worldwide seek to uncover these precious resources from the ground. When the metals outlive their use in the infrastructure or product, they can typically be recycled for reuse. In particular, the market for recycling copper has become a lucrative and large global market.

As you begin the journey of recycling copper, you will need to check the current price of the metal, which is calculated per pound and changes during the Chicago Mercantile Exchange’s trading hours. Throughout modern history, the price has risen and decreased between $1 and approximately $4.50 per pound. Once you have a base price, you can weigh the scrap copper using an industrial scale. Make sure that the scale is calibrated to ensure accuracy. Multiple the number of pounds of scrap you own by the price-per-pound of the copper. This will be the total estimated cost of your metal, and you will then need to consider whether the current market cost of copper is worth your effort and time.

If you find that you want to take advantage of the market and recycle the copper, you will need to find a copper scrap recycling facility near you. It is not necessary to clean the copper prior to selling it, but it is courteous to do so, regardless of what the recycling facility will do with it. Industrial areas in nearly every city across the country have these recycling plants, and a quick online search will reveal locations nearest you. Call several locations to verify that they are accepting copper and inquire as to the price they are offering per pound. You may also be asked to provide some form of photo identification when you haul your scrap copper, and most recycling companies and buyers will photocopy your identification to help discourage copper thieves.

While these recycling facilities will pay you upfront for the copper, they will do so at a discount compared to the market rate. Still, the more scrap you have in your possession, the more likely it will be that you will receive close to the current price. Depending on the size and weight of the copper, you may need to use a truck or other large vehicle to transport it to the facility. Once you offload the scrap metal, the facility will pay you, and the scrap metal will be in the facility’s possession.

Jay White

I started Dumb Little Man many years ago so great authors, writers and bloggers could share their life "hacks" and tips for success with everyone. I hope you find something you like!

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