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- Tiles Recycling (Roofing)
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- Metals (other than cans) Recycling
- All Materials
Place most metal items into your commingled recycling container if you have recycling service at your home, business, apartment or school. You can also recycle larger pieces of metal at locations listed on this page.
Metals are elements that start out as rocks (called ores). It takes lots of energy to mine them, grind them, and heat them up (smelting) to get just the part we want. For example, it takes eight tons of the ore bauxite to make one ton of aluminum. While this process is very energy intensive, the good news is…
Almost All Metals are Recyclable!
If you have a hard object made out of metal — a can, toy, tool, or car part — you don’t have to worry about what type of metal it is. Just put it in your blue bin. Click the links below for more information about the different metal types.
- Third most common element on Earth’s surface
- Silvery and lightweight
- Commonly used in beverage cans
- Read more about Aluminum
Brass and Bronze
- A copper alloy with zinc or tin
- Usually used in gold or green ornamental metal objects
- Read more about Brass and Bronze
- Mostly iron with some carbon and silicon
- Common in frying pans and other cooking instruments
- Read more about Cast Iron
- A red colored metal, tarnishes green
- Used in pennies and some cookware
- Common in wire and pipes
- Read more about Copper
- A silver colored metal made from iron and carbon, along with other metals
- Often used to package canned foods
- Used in construction, such as rebar
- Read more about Steel
- A silver metal with the symbol Sn on the periodic table
- Used to make Pewter which is 85-99% tin
- “Tin” cans are steel cans coated in tin
- Read more about Tin
What about cans?
Check out our Metal Cans page for info on where you can recycle your cans, both aluminum and steel. We also have a CRV page that tells all about the Bottle Bill and covered products. The only can that is not recyclable at home is a partially full aerosol can which is classified as hazardous waste.
Which metals aren’t recyclable?
Some metals can’t be put in your recycling container, but you probably already know about most of them. Examples include any radioactive metal (uranium, plutonium…but how did you get them anyway?) and mercury or objects containing mercury. Also off limits are lead-containing products like cathode ray tubes (found in TVs and computer monitors).
While precious metals are recyclable, chances are you probably want to keep the value of your silver, gold, or platinum for yourself. Check out our Jewelry page for more information.
Scrap metal is one of the most valuable materials you can recycle, and it encompasses so many consumer products. From appliances to batteries to cans to clothes hangers, metal is everywhere in our homes. Recycling metal is important to not only keep this limited supply material out of landfills, but also because it can make you money.
Metal Recycling Preparation
- With scrap metal, the general rule is a product needs to be at least 50 percent metal. Even if that metal is surrounded by other materials like plastic, it’s worth recycling if it’s made mostly out of metal.
- If you have products with only a small amount of metal but it’s easy to remove, separate the metal. For example, a plastic three-ring binder is not scrap metal, but remove the metal rings and now you’re talking.
- Scrap metal is classified as either ferrous (containing iron, such as steel) and nonferrous (everything else). So, you’ll want to identify whether your metal is ferrous or nonferrous. The way to do this is with a magnet. Ferrous metals stick to a magnet; nonferrous metals don’t.
- Use Earth911’s recycling directory to find a scrap metal recycler, and contact the company or visit its webpage to find out current payouts and if there’s a minimum amount of material you need to bring.
- Most scrap metal recyclers will require you to bring identification when you recycle. This is to prevent people from stealing scrap metal (e.g., road signs, metal barriers) and selling it for scrap.
Find scrap metal drop-off locations near you using our Recycling Locator.
Why Recycle Metal
- Metal is one of the few items that you can regularly recycle for money, although you’ll usually get paid by the pound. This makes it a great fundraising opportunity.
- Nonferrous scrap makes up only 10 percent of the total material recycled in the U.S., but it earns more than half of scrap recycling revenue.
- Metal is in limited supply, and while we can manufacture more glass and plastic from natural resources, we can’t make more aluminum, copper and steel.
Frequent Metal Recycling Questions
Can I recycle scrap metal in my curbside recycling program?
Most cities will only accept metal cans (aluminum and steel) in the curbside recycling program. Other metals are only collected curbside if your city provides bulky waste pick-up. You’ll need to call to schedule this pick-up and tell the hauler what you have — bulky waste pick-up usually accepts miscellaneous scrap (e.g., ironing boards, aluminum bats, silverware) as well as large scrap (e.g., appliances and electronics).
What types of metals can I recycle?
Common forms of nonferrous metal include aluminum, brass, copper, lead, nickel, stainless steel, tin and zinc. These are used to make musical instruments, wires and pipe, auto parts, keys, silverware and a variety of other products. Ferrous metal includes steel, commonly featured in household appliances.
How much money can I earn by recycling metal?
This all depends on the amount you have, as most scrap metal recyclers pay by the pound. Also, nonferrous metals are more valuable than ferrous metals. The most valuable metal parts you could recycle would be automotive (e.g., engines, batteries) that are almost entirely made of metal and very bulky. If you’re looking to recycle lighter items like cans or coat hangers, it’s best to wait until you have a large amount to optimize payment.
How is scrap metal recycled?
All metals eventually end up at a scrap metal yard, where they are separated by type. The metals are then crushed and compacted, non-metal components (such as plastics) are removed, and everything left is melted in a furnace into metal sheets. This metal is then used to make new metal products.
What are reuse options for metal?
If you have clothes hangers, you can take them to a dry cleaner for reuse. Many secondhand stores will accept and resell metal furniture, even if it’s in need of repair. You can also donate working appliances if they are not too old.
- Computers & Notebooks
- Renovation Waste
- Dumpster Alternative
- Monitors & Screens
- Garbage & Refuse
- Hot Tubs
- Scrap Metals
- Yard Waste
- General Rubbish
- Exercise Equipment
- Pianos & Organs
- Pool Tables
Junk comes in all shapes and sizes. Thanks to projects like home renovations and car repairs, some of that junk may be mixed with scrap metal.
Scrap metal shouldn’t be thrown away with the trash – it’s a valuable resource that can be recycled and turned into something new. Not only does proper disposal give this junk a second chance, scrap metal recycling keeps materials that can’t be broken down naturally out of landfills and keeps the environment safe.
We handle scrap metal recycling near you
Scrap the pain of hauling your extra metal. 1-800-GOT-JUNK? offers scrap metal pick up for both your home and business – all you have to do is point! We are fully insured, do all the heavy lifting, and recycling when possible to save your back, your time, and your peace of mind.
Metal recycling services we offer
Aluminum is one of the most common types of scrap metal that is recycled. Many household items are made from aluminum, including soda cans and food tins. During the recycling process, aluminum cans are melted down to be reused in the creation of new products.
During renovations or deep cleaning projects, you may find yourself with leftover brass plumbing fixtures or odds and ends. Luckily, that brass can be melted down and reused.
Cast iron recycling
If your old cast iron skillet is rusting through, it may be time for a new one. Don’t throw that metal in with the rest of your trash – it still has value! Call us today and we’ll help you recycle your old cast iron tools, keeping the landfills free of clunky scrap metal and the environment clean.
From copper electrical wiring to old pipes and plumbing, having excess copper around the house can be a pain. Luckily, copper is another metal that does not lose it’s properties or value when reworked. Recycling copper is easy.
Steel is the most recycled material on the planet. Once it is recycled, steel can be used to create brand new products such as steel frames for construction material, packaging, and other industrial supplies.
Tin is a soft metal that can be found in all sorts of common items, including pots and pans, electronics, and food and drink cans. Before tossing it into a landfill, tin should be given to local scrap metal buyers and recycling centers so that it can be reused and retain its value.
Lead can be recycled over and over against without losing any quality or value. If you have auto, household, or any other type of batteries to dispose of, call 1-800-GOT-JUNK? today. We can help you haul away your old scrap lead and recycle when possible.
Zinc is known for its anti-rusting abilities and is used in a variety of construction materials. Once recycled, it can be used to protect steel from corrosion.
You’d be surprised what junk you have around your house full of nickel. Used belt buckles,old cell phones, broken kitchen utensils, and used razors all contain nickel that can be recycled.
How do you properly dispose of scrap metal?
The best way to get rid of household metal junk depends on the type of metal your scrap is.
Small items like food and drink cans are typically made from aluminum and steel. These metals can be placed in your home recycling bin or be taken to a local recycling depot. You can get some money back from deposits on drink cans!
Larger items made from other materials can be taken to a local scrap yard to be recycled. Of course, this means loading your junk, hauling it to the yard, and possibly renting a truck or van.
What types of scrap metals can’t be recycled?
Not all scrap metal around your home can be recycled. Some of these metals include:
- Lead, found in cathode ray tubes in old TVs
- Radioactive metals like Plutonium and uranium
- Mercury, often found in fluorescent light tubes
- Motor oil and paint cans
- Pots and pans
- Propane gas tanks
- Certain car parts
These metals are often treated with harmful chemicals that could cause damage to the soil and the air once they’re broken down.
Why should scrap metals be recycled?
The metal recycling industry is a staple in the manufacturing world. This industry provides jobs, produces materials to manufacturers at lower costs, and reduces the need to mine for new metals like aluminum, copper, and steel.
Excessive mining is extremely harmful to the environment. As access to rich sources of metals becomes limited, mining methods become more invasive and require more and more energy.
Recycling is a much more efficient way to produce metals needed for manufacturing. It uses less energy than sourcing new materials and preserves natural resources. It also helps to reduce garbage sent to landfills and slows down the consumption of natural resources.
How does recycling scrap metal help the environment?
Recycling your metal helps prevent excessive mining of metal ores, saving manufacturers large amounts of money and energy resources. Recycling scrap metal also helps reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfill sites, which in turn reduces the amount of chemical and visual pollution.
Can scrap metal go in my recycling bin?
While scrap metal is recyclable, most cities do not do pick up scrap metal placed on the curb. Small metal objects such as aluminum soda and food cans can be placed in recycle bins and collected. However, you must take larger metal items to recycling centers yourself.
Can empty paint cans go in the garbage or blue box?
Wet paint inside a paint can is generally not accepted by local counties or recycling centers. Before getting rid of extra paint, make sure it’s dried first. Once dried, the tins can be donated to home improvement organizations or picked up by local scrap metal removal services.
1-800-GOT-JUNK? can often help you get rid of paint cans if the paint is dried. When you call to book your scrap metal removal appointment, be sure to mention that you have dried paint. Ability to collect these items may vary by franchise location.
What types of scrap metals can be recycled?
Almost all metals can be recycled. In fact, most metals can be recycled over and over again without altering their properties. Some of the most popular metals that are recycled are:
At 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, we’re scrap metal removal experts. We know how to handle all unwanted scrap and work with local recycling facilities to ensure proper disposal of both metal and non-metal components.
How to Recycle Metals the Right Way!
How To Recycle the Right Way
May 11, 2018 | Kathryn Kellogg
Last Updated on April 9, 2020
Recycling should be a last resort. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know it’s a recurring theme.
Before we get to recycling, we should first reduce and reuse. These R’s are often forgotten because they’re not actionable. How can you quantify reducing and reusing? How can you see the fruits of your labor?
Recycling is easy because it is so actionable. It’s easy to recycle because it’s tangible and we humans love to see physical, instant progress. We’re not so keen on abstract ideas like reduce and reuse.
Nonetheless, recycling is still an important part of the process. Like we talked about a couple of weeks ago. China put a ban on our paper and plastic imports with a contamination rate over 1% at the beginning of 2018.
Metal is is the most valuable of all the recyclable materials. Unfortunately, metal is up on the chopping block next. I’m not telling you this so that you stop recycling. I’m telling you this so you can recycle better!
We haven’t been the most diligent recyclers (hence, the ban), so I’m hoping that through this new series we can recycle better and learn to depend on recycling less.
Table of Contents
Aluminum cans are the most valuable and recyclable thing in your bin. It’s light like plastic creating less emission when distributed, and unlike plastic, aluminum is infinitely recyclable without any loss of quality.
An aluminum can, can go from the curbside bin to the store shelf in as little as 60 days.
Aluminum cans typically contain drinks, so after you’ve finished your drink tap out the excess moisture, and they’re good to be placed in your curbside bin. The cans don’t need to be crushed.
Aluminum foil is reusable! If you have it, use it until it starts to flake and fall apart. And, don’t forget about any aluminum pie tins or baking dishes.
Wash any food scraps off of the foil and let it dry. Once it’s dry, ball the aluminum foil up until it’s a ball at least 2″ in diameter. If it’s any smaller, it can get lost and wind up in the landfill.
Common items you might not think of with aluminum foil include:
- butter wrappers like Kerrygold
- chocolate wrappers inside of bars or chocolate bunnies or eggs etc.
With aluminum cans come pop tabs which weren’t originally attached to the can. You’d pop open the can and then discard (often litter) the pop top separately.
The tabs are aluminum, and too small to be incorporated into the recycling process, and even though they’re attached to our cans in modern times. Certain charities still accept them as donations.
You can send your tabs to the Ronald McDonald House where they handle the recycling for you, and the money they get from recycling goes to house families.
90% of all the cans in the super market are made from steel. Things like canned tomatoes, a can of chickpeas, or a can of coconut milk are all steel.
You don’t have to remove the paper label from your steel can before recycling. When the cans are recycled they are subjected to very, very high temps that burn the labels off.
You can test whether or not your can is steel by using a magnet. Steel is magnetic; aluminum is not.
When recycling plants sort metals they do it with magnets. The magnet will pick up the steel, and the aluminum will be left behind.
As far as cans go, you need to rinse them before putting them in the recycle bin. You don’t want to leave food particles in the can as it can contaminate the bale.
steel can lids:
Steel can lids are recyclable, but if you don’t have a smooth edge can opener*, you shouldn’t throw them in the bin.
Most recycling is still sorted by hand. Before you put anything in the bin you should ask yourself, would I feel safe just grabbing this? If the answer is no, you have to find another way.
You have two options, you can take it to a transfer station for separate recycling or you can shove the lid down inside of the steel can and crimp the opening ensuring that the lid won’t escape.
Bottle caps for beer or sodas that come in glass jars can be metal or aluminum. You’ll have to test it by using a magnet, and separate the steel caps from the aluminum caps.
You’ll want to store steel caps inside of a steel can and aluminum caps inside of an aluminum one.
Fill the can half way full with the caps, and then place the lid of the can on top of the caps. Then crimp the opening of the can ensuring the caps and lid can’t escape. You can now recycle this in your curbside bin.
lids from glass bottles:
Lids on glass bottles, like pasta sauce or tahini, are often made from steel. You can unscrew those from the glass bottles, and place them in the recycle bin. The lids are large enough they aren’t going to be lost.
Typically those lids are lined with a very thin layer of plastic. Because of the high-temps used to recycle metal, it’s burned off. (Another reason why recycling shouldn’t be the first line of defense.)
One of my favorite zero waste swaps has been a safety razor, but when you have a safety razor… what do you do with all the blades?
You’ll need to take razor blades to a transfer station that handles metal recycling with machines only.
If you’re in Northern California, I go to the Concord Recycling Center. Get a steel can that contains broth only. Cut a slot in the top of the can big enough for a blade to slip through, and pour the broth out. Rinse with water and leave the can to dry for a day or two.
Obviously, there’s no way of completely guaranteeing it to be dry, but that’s alright. Drop you used blades into the slot. Once it’s full put a piece of tape over the slot and take it to your nearest metal recycling facility.
other metal scraps:
For other metal scraps, I recommend going to your transfer station or giving your local waste management plant a call.
These are the most common practices across the US, but every recycling facility accepts different materials. It’s always best to go online to your waste management companies website or give them a call!
Up next in this series, I will be covering paper and plastic. Let me know if there are any others that you’d like to see.
Not Properly Preparing Your Materials
Scrap yards will never encourage you to strip your copper wire when you bring it in. That’s because they don’t have to pay you as much for the copper wire when it’s not stripped!
Get the most out of your copper wire by taking the extra time and stripping it! You can buy a simple wire stripper or a more sophisticated one for larger loads to strip you copper and aluminum insulated wire. This can make you double or triple the money when scrapping it with your yard. If you are looking for some other basic tips for prepping your metals for the yard, we have some basic guidelines to help you.
Going To A Scrap Yard With Bad Reputation
Just like scrap, you’ve got to weed out the bad stuff from the good stuff that’s going to make you money. You have to weed out the scrap yards you deal with to those that appreciate your business and don’t take advantage of you! Not all scrap yard owners are alike, so you may have to do a little digging before you can find the local yard owner whom you want to continue to sell your scrap.
Some scrap yard may be transparent about how they buy materials and how they want them separated for the best money. While other scrap yards may not give you a clear cut answer when you ask them questions. It’s important to know how to pick a good scrap yard so you can make the most money when you bring your scrap in.
Being Misled By Different Scrap Metal Grades
When you’re new to scrapping, you may think you have a load of the good stuff until you get to the yard and find out what you thought was #1 Bare Bright Wire is only Insulated Copper Cable (many variations) because you didn’t strip it. That’s a big difference in price per pound! Even if you’re a veteran around the scrap yard who usually recycles copper wire, say you land a nice load of Insulated Cable only to find out you really got your hands on Data Wire. You’re going to feel the difference when you get paid! Make sure you find out what material you have and how your yard likes it prepared before you get to the yard.
Another material that is important to have an idea about is stainless steel. A common metal that you will come across it’s important to know there are different kinds and grades of stainless steel. Stainless steel has Nickel inside, the different grades are determined by the amount of nickel content inside. Ask your scrap yard about how they identify their stainless steel grades.
Like we mentioned above, when you are starting out you may not know the difference between copper grades. Copper comes in many grades, here are the most common:
Be Sure To Separate Your Materials Before Your Trip To The Scrap Yard
Many scrap yards will not let people do separating at the door because the yard will make less money. You’ll also tie up their labor and could hold up other customers. Having materials separated before going to a scrap yard is important. If you don’t sort your scrap then the scrap yard owner will classify all of your scrap as the least valuable in the load. Think about it – if you have a ton of #1 Bare Bright Wire with a few strips of #2 Copper Tubing/Wire mixed in then you can easily be paid the price for #2 Copper Tubing for the whole load. That price difference can really add up – just think about it!
Know The Price You Are Going To Get Paid
Before you take your materials to your chosen scrap yard, call ahead to get their prices or check the iScrap App National Prices on the app or on the web. Just by calling a few of your local scrap yards, you can find the best possible price for your materials. As we mentioned before, don’t let pricing be your only criteria for selecting a scrap yard. (You never know they might be making up for a higher price with a scale that is a little off.) It’s hard to put a value on the customer service you get at well run yard!
When asking for prices, as the scrap yard if they will honor the price if you come that day. If you are not going that day to the scrap yard, you can’t expect a yard to honor a price every time. Because scrap prices can change quickly and often, prices can be different since you got your quote. So be prepared to call on your way in for a current price.
When you are getting ready to bring your scrap metal into your local scrap yards, it’s important to know what prices and service you will get at your local scrap yard. When scrappers are loading up their materials to go to a scrap yard, it’s good to have metals separated and prepared. If you don’t feel comfortable with a scrap yard’s services, you can always pack back up and go to a different location you can find on the iScrap App.
Westend61 / Getty Images
If you are a metal scrapper or work in the scrapping industry, you’ll likely be curious about getting the most current scrap metal prices you can find in your area.
You might be a small recycling business, a hobbyist, or an entrepreneur with an idea for collecting and selling scrap metal. You’ll need to know where to go to get the best prices, or at least know where to go.
Where to Look
You can find the scrapping industry prices online. Scrap Register and Scrapmonster are two websites that collect information on the metal scrapping industry. However, services like these do not exist for free.
The iScrap App is another web-based service that gives you options either view average prices or look at localized scrap metal prices. You can enter your zip code in the search box on their website. A map will be brought up that shows you any scrap yards within or around your zip code.
Clicking on an icon in the map pulls up the prices specific to that location, with the date that the prices were recorded.
The free information is generally months old unless you subscribe to their premium service. If you are in the scrapping business and genuinely need the information, you might consider subscribing. You might even be able to call them and work something out for your business.
Current Scrap Prices 2021
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Scrap metal is categorized into several different subcategories. For instance, electronics has 10 different subcategories that distinguish which kind of electronic component some scrap is.
Some of the most popular categories are listed, along with the price you might be able to sell it for (all prices are per pound unless otherwise noted and current as of January, 2021):
Aluminum scrap is priced in several different categories:
Are you seeking to make extra space in your backyard or at home by getting rid of junk or metal, and get cash right away? Then you are in the right place. It is always a hassle to have trash around the home. What if you aren’t sure how to dispose of it or if it is legal? These questions always running in the mind of a person.
But here we have the solution to all your scrap or trash related issues in one glance, here we introduce our cash for copper service, where we take any kind of scrap or junk metal from your home and dispose of it in a systematic manner or with the consent of the government. What kind of scrap metal do we actually do our work on?
Cars that are used (working or not).
-And other households metals
BrightStarScrapMetal offers instant cash for copper.
We provide quick and simple service at the number listed on our site. All you have to do is contact us or utilize any other mode of contact to get started with the next steps. The next step will to be completed by us with only one step from the customer.
We are committed to customer satisfaction , from the time we collect the trash to distributing the cash to the client, we have a complete respect for the trust of our customers. We’ll offer you the most competitive price for any trash you send us. The accumulation of trash or scraps for long periods of time creates a mess or unsanitary, and disposing of it can become difficult for the particular. Whenever you wish for a useful source about Cash for Copper, browse around this website.
Instant cash for scrap metal the present, so easy
Everybody is looking for instant cash for scrap metal. But they might not be able to find the correct procedure or best way to go about it. We are here to help you with any scrap-related problem in just a few clicks or just one phone call.
We have earned a good name in the scrap decomposing or scrap collection industry and we offer the most competitive prices on the market to our customers.
We provide friendly and knowledgeable employees. We we also offer an interface that is user-friendly for easy, efficient dealing with the service provided by us to our customers.
The most appealing part? Customers don’t have to pay anything whatsoever during the entire process, from collecting scrap to cashing it.
The benefits of our services
Receiving instant cash for copper is the very first and most beneficial act of our service. due to quick response customers don’t have to worry for a second and the process play systematically and smoothly.we do not even keep the client’s request longer than one day which seems not to be too hectic. There is no requirement for the customer to move or pay one single trip to anyplace since we offer the complete service at your home. We have the lowest scrap metal price is available. It is also possible to check our prices against other websites. We never disappoint.
Bright Star Scrap Metal
29 Mickle St, Dandenong South VIC 3175, Australia
New and used car dealers, automobile junkyards, muffler shops, and car repair shops all end up with used catalytic converters on hand. If you’re in one of those businesses, you know that each used converter contains about one-tenth of an ounce of platinum which is trading at $1000/oz or more. The problem is, the platinum in your used converters isn’t located in neat little blocks that you can pull out and sell. It takes a recycling company with specialized equipment to extract and separate the platinum from the converter’s internal honeycomb.
So what do you do if you have used catalytic converters on hand? Like most companies, you probably call a recycler that comes to you, hauls them away, and writes you a check for them. There are plenty of recycling companies that do it, and you probably already use one of them. But does your recycling company pay you for the market value of the precious metals for each converter you turn over? No way. But it’s worth losing all that money because of the convenience that those companies offer you, right?
There is a better way – one that can put more of those platinum dollars back in your pocket, not in the pocket of your recycler.
If you end up with 500 or more catalytic converters (or if you can wait until you have that many before recycling them), you don’t need a middle-man catalytic converter recycling company. You can ship your used catalytic converters directly to Specialty Metal Smelters & Refiners for recycling. We’ll recycle them for you and write you a much bigger check than a local catalytic converter company can – and it’s easy. It’s not difficult or expensive to ship them to us. Call us at 800-426-2344 to find out how easy it is, and how much more money you can net from every converter you recycle. But please remember that we cannot accept single converters – we require a minimum lot of 500.
If you end up with smaller numbers of used converters on hand, you can still put more scrap platinum dollars in your pocket. How? Simply team up with some other companies in your area that have used catalytic converters on hand. (They could be auto repair shops, muffler companies, and new and used car dealers.) As a group, you can simply wait until you have 500 or more used converters on hand, then send them directly to Specialty Metal Smelters & Refiners and get more money for every converter. Call us at 800-426-2344 and we’ll tell you how.
Start a sideline catalytic converter recycling business of your own. Not a bad idea, right? Just like the converter recycling companies in your area, you can buy used converters at low prices. You can then ship to us for platinum extraction. We’ll write you a check for every ounce of platinum and other platinum group metals they contain. The result could be a profitable sideline business that can produce a solid second income for your company.
So the bottom line is . . .
Why let middle men claim most of the dollars that are hidden in your used catalytic converters, when you can easily claim those dollars yourself? We’ve never heard of a successful company that throws dollars away every day, have you?