tin cans

Frequently asked questions about recycling metal


Many metals can safely be recycled and should not be thrown in the trash. Here are some frequently asked questions and answers about recycling metal.


What are the benefits of metal recycling?

Recycling scrap metals limits the amount of waste that ends up in landfills and saves on the energy required to produce new metals. It reduces the amount of ore mining throughout the world, which is hugely beneficial. This is because mining operations have devastating consequences for the environment. They destroy natural habitats and pollute the surrounding air, water and soil. In addition, producing new metal creates an ample amount of greenhouse gas emissions.

Which metals can be recycled?

Most recycling companies will accept ferrous (such as cast iron, wrought iron and stainless steel) and non-ferrous metals (such as copper, aluminum, zinc, nickel, silver and gold). However, materials that are a potential source of hazardous substances can’t be recycled. This includes radioactive materials, PCB contaminated materials, fracking pipes, razor wire and other dangerous materials.


What are some examples of items that contain recyclable metals?

Valuable metals can be found in many common household items. A quick search of your home, garage and shed will likely yield many materials that contain metals that can be recycled. Here are a few examples:


• Copper piping, tubing and wiring
• Aluminum and cast iron pots and pans
• Stainless steel sinks
• Brass faucets and plumbing
• Ceiling fan motors
• Power tools
• Radiators
• Old automobile parts
• Kitchen appliances


How much is scrap metal worth?

It depends on the type of metal. Some are worth more than others. Currently, copper is one of the most valuable metals to recycle. Market prices change based on supply and demand. Check current market rates or ask your local scrap metal recycling company to provide you with a quote.


Where can I recycle my scrap metal?

Small items made from aluminum and steel (e.g. pop cans) can be placed in your home recycling bin. Larger items can be taken to your local scrap yard or metal recycling centre.


Metal recycling in Alberta

General Recycling Industries Ltd. buys, sells and recycles ferrous and non-ferrous metals. We have two convenient locations in Edmonton and we service cities throughout Alberta. We also sell new and used steel. You can bring in scrap and take home steel. Visit one of our locations to view our available stock, or contact us for more information.