Wednesday 17 December 2014

Difference Between Ferrous and Non-ferrous Metal Scrap

Recycling should be fun.

It should not be complex or so technical that it becomes a task. That is the main motivation for us to write blogs that help you recycle and keep it fun.

In today's blog post we are going to talk about the differences and similarities between ferrous and non-ferrous metal scrap. People mostly get overwhelmed with the technicalities when they start recycling but after you read this blog post, we are sure you won't have any doubts about how to recycle either of these metals or negotiate on their prices.

Simply put: Ferrous metals contain iron. Non-ferrous metals do not contain any iron.

Ferrous metals include: Steel, cast iron and wrought iron. Non-ferrous metals include: aluminium, brass, copper, nickel, zinc, lead and tin. They also include precious metals like gold and silver, but you won't really  sell them at the scrap yard.

The Differences

Ferrous metals are widely used for their strength and durability. Skyscrapers, bridges, automobiles and tools use ferrous metals. But for all their strength and durability, ferrous metals have the disadvantage of rusting when exposed to air. Stainless steel and wrought iron resist rusting but not other ferrous metals.

Non-ferrous metals are not as strong as ferrous metals, but they are used for various other purposes. Aluminium is valued for its malleability and light weight and used extensively in aircrafts. Non-ferrous metals are also resistant to rusting and are used for road signs, roofing, water pipes and gutters.

The Price

The prices of ferrous metals remain fairly steady as they are available in good supply throughout the year.

Non-ferrous metals are harder to come by which makes the demand greater and the prices higher. Aluminum prices don't fluctuate as much because of its steady supply but other non-ferrous metals like copper and brass can face massive price fluctuations throughout the year.

If you are looking to sell scrap, always call the scrap dealer in advance to find out the rate they are offering to buy the metal you have to sell.

The Similarities

Both ferrous and non-ferrous metals are useful and important for the Recycling Industry and ultimately for the environment.

If you have any more questions about ferrous and non-ferrous metals, leave them in the comments and we will get back to you.

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