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It seems that everyone is making the effort to recycle these days, but few really understand what materials can be recycled. While we’re all aware of the more common ones like paper and plastics; metal seems to be a tough one to remember. It is true though; you can recycle metal as long as you know what metal items and how to go about it. As a matter of fact, the amount of residential or household metal scrap is incredible! Our homes are filled with metals that can and should be recycled once we no longer have any use for them and these household metals can be divided into several groups: white goods, large household metal scrap and small residential metal scrap.

Millions of tonnes of Metal are recycled each year in the UK alone, generating billions of pounds in revenue. Just over half of the recycled metal is exported to meet foreign demand and the rest is reprocessed within the UK to make more metal. Metal is an extremely useful and versatile material that is used to make many items in every day use including cars, trucks, ships, aeroplanes, household appliances, railway tracks, cutlery, ovens and of course it is also used for packaging.

One major advantage in recycling metal is that it can be recycled over and over again without losing any of the properties of the metal itself. Metal is therefore a valuable commodity and as such, when a metal item reaches the end of its life, it can be used 100% of the time to make new metal. The most common metals in every day household use today are Steel and Aluminum – Steel is used to make food cans and Aluminum is used to make soft drink cans.

You can tell the difference between Steel and Aluminum using a magnet because Steel will stick to a magnetic whereas Aluminum will not. This makes the sorting of various types of metal at recycling depots a lot easier as opposed to say plastic recycling where sorting is a much more complex practice. When recycling metal, it is divided into Ferrous and non-Ferrous metals.

When it comes to recycling these items you should check the regulations with your local government office as some of these items are not able to be left curbside with your other recyclables like glass, papers and plastics. Some municipalities require that you call and make arrangements for pick up while others leave you to make your own arrangements. Luckily there are several options in your local phone directory when it comes to recycling metal scraps-this is a big industry you know! There are several scrap yards that will send a truck to pick up your white goods and such; all you need to do is get them out to the curb for them. There are even places that will pay you for your metal scraps and will happily send someone out to pick up your items if there is enough to make it worth their while. This certainly makes you see spring cleaning in a whole new light, doesn’t it?