With any type of recycling, different materials have different needs. While most people know that metal recycling is distinct from other materials, it may surprise you to learn that different kinds of metal also require unique processing. Each type of metal requires slightly different handling based on its particular properties. Perhaps the most common example of a metal that requires special handling to recycle is ”red metal.”
What Is Red Metal?
Red metal refers to any type of metal compound that contains copper. While pure copper is the most obvious example of a red metal, any alloy that contains enough copper to take on its reddish hue falls into this category.
Unlike steel and other iron-based metals, red metals are considered nonferrous, making them resistant to rust and corrosion. Because of this, red metals are often found in objects that see a lot of use, from coins and sculptures to wiring and industrial machinery. Copper is also naturally antibacterial, which makes copper alloys like brass an ideal choice for doorknobs, banisters, and other high-touch objects.
Types of Red Metal
The most common types of red metal are copper, brass, and bronze. While they all contain copper, however, each of these red metals has its own unique properties. One of the most common red metals is high-conductivity copper (HCC). HCC has a purity level of 99.3% or greater, making it highly conductive and ductile. This means that it’s ideal for electrical wiring and other similar applications.
Brass, which is made by combining copper with zinc, shares many of copper’s properties but is both cheaper and has a higher tensile strength. This makes it especially common for non-electrical construction uses.
Bronze is another alloy red metal, created by mixing copper with tin rather than zinc. Other elements, such as silicone or phosphorus, are also often included, depending on the desired properties.
Recycling Red Metal
Red metals can be found in standalone objects or integrated into many of the machines and electronics around us. Whether you’re looking to get rid of a handful of old copper wiring or have more complex needs, working with recycling experts can ensure that you get the most out of your scrap.
A certified recycler will be able to handle all sorts of scrap, electronic devices, and other items containing metal to reuse or recycle them in a safe, efficient manner. Proper recycling provides opportunities for a monetary return, as the components (especially red metals like copper) can have significant value on the scrap and ITAD markets.
First America Metal Corporation
First America Metal Corporation (FAMCe) is an R2v3-certified leader in nonferrous metal recycling, ITAD, electronic recycling, and data destruction services. We offer a wide range of recycling solutions designed to meet our clients’ unique needs in a safe and eco-friendly manner.
We specialize in secure, innovative electronics recycling services for businesses that need to safely dispose of electronic scrap, high-temperature alloys, and non-ferrous scrap. Our level of expertise, unparalleled customer service, and aggressive pricing make First America the leading option for almost any recycling need.
Need your company’s electronics safely and sustainably decommissioned? Learn more and get in touch with us at firstamerica.com.