Scrap metal collection and recycling is big business today as manufacturers increasingly seek cost-effective ways of doing business. Notably, producing goods from scrap metal uses less energy, making used metals affordable than newly extracted ores. Since steel is arguably one of the most recycled metals in the industry, it is crucial to identify scrap steel by type at a metal recycling plant. This article highlights the importance of identifying scrap steel types.
Retain Quality of Manufactured Products — Scrap steel is vital for making various metallic products. The quality of products depends on a recycling plant's ability to identify scrap steel accurately. For instance, the type of steel used to manufacture kitchen appliances differs from the steel required to make exhaust systems. Generally, 304 stainless steel grade is suitable for kitchen equipment, while 321 stainless steel grade is ideal for exhaust systems. Therefore, if companies fail to identify scrap steel, they risk using the wrong type of metal for various applications. Most importantly, steel type has a bearing on the quality of manufactured products.
Determine Payout — Companies can have in-house scrap metal collection departments, but it is usually not practical. Instead, manufacturers rely on scrap metal yards to collect used metals on their behalf and buy whatever they need. It means that scrap metal acquisition is an operational cost; hence, companies must be conservative in their spending. Furthermore, since there are different types of scrap steel metals, the amount of money a company pays varies accordingly. For instance, carbon steel is the least expensive due to its popularity and availability. Thus, affordability makes carbon steel the best option for large projects such as construction. On the other hand, alloy steel is the most expensive since specific elements, such as chromium, are challenging to come by. Therefore, identifying scrap steel allows a company to pay the right price and avoid being overcharged.
Storage Purposes — Manufacturers often buy scrap metals in bulk and store them for future use. A significant advantage of purchasing scrap steel in bulk is protection from price fluctuations. Notably, most people believe that steel does not rust, but nothing could be further from the truth. While scrap stainless steel does not rust under storage, plain steel corrodes if not stored properly. The reason is that stainless steel has a protective layer of chromium that prevents oxidation. Conversely, plain steel can rust since it has an element of iron. Therefore, identifying scrap steel metal allows manufacturers precise sorting and safe storage to avoid deterioration.
For more information on scrap metal, contact a company near you.