Folks often ask us about our pricing for scrap metal. They’re often surprised to learn that they’re getting either more money for their scrap, or disappointed that they aren’t getting more. A pound of copper is a pound of copper, right?

There are a number of factors that go into calculating the value of your scrap metal. These are a few of them:

* What’s the Virgin Market doing?
All scrap metal starts out as a brand-new product. We call this “virgin metal.” It’s been freshly mined and refined and turned into a usable product. If the demand for virgin copper is high, that will drive up the value of your scrap. Low demand = lower value.

* What does the market need?
If everyone and their mother is building houses, materials like copper for plumbing and aluminum for siding will be in higher demand. Siding can easily be made from recycled materials, so that raw scrap will become more valuable. A boom in office and technology development will likewise drive up demand for certain metals, driving up the value for those.

* How is fuel?
There’s been a ton of talk recently about the costs of gasoline, heating oil, and the like. It takes fuel to refine metal – fuel to get it there, fuel to fire the smelters, fuel to fabricate, fuel to deliver it to market. When fuel prices are higher, the cost of metal is higher, and so is the value of your scrap.

* How good it your stuff?
Have you ever bought something from one of those scratch & dent places? A perfectly good appliance or piece of furniture will become suddenly much cheaper if it has an imperfection. It’s like getting a few thousand dollars off of a new car because the dealer used it as a demo. The same holds true for scrap metal. Bright, shiny copper that’s never been used is more valuable than a copper weather vane that’s been exposed to the elements for a few years. They both may weigh a pound, but their value is different. The purity of our scrap is also a factor. Something that’s 100% brass is worth more than a door-knocker that’s been mixed with aluminum or some other alloy.

We watch the markets daily to determine what people want and what they’re willing to pay for it. We examine every load of scrap metal we receive to make certain that what’s brass is brass, copper is copper, and stainless is stainless. That’s how we’re able to give you the best price for your scrap metal.