Recycling heavy industrial equipment can be a difficult task. Fluids must be drained, components must be disassembled, and large pieces must be cut up for disposal. Then, everything needs to be moved to the recycling location. These obstacles lead many owners to simply throw out their old equipment when it breaks or is no longer useful.
However, even non-working industrial equipment contains parts and materials that can be recycled, and some components can be quite valuable. When you dump equipment or pay someone to haul it off without first assessing its value, you’re potentially throwing away money.
The good news is that industrial equipment recycling can be just as easy as having it hauled away. Professional industrial equipment recycling services not only know how to tear down heavy machinery quickly and efficiently, but they also compensate you for the salvaged material.
Below, we detail some of the components that can make industrial equipment recycling so valuable for machine shops and manufacturers that are in the process of removing old equipment.
Heavy Equipment Contains Valuable Mechanical Components
Industrial machinery is expensive, so it is usually used for a very long time. Most machine shops would rather repair, modify, or retrofit aging machines than replace them with new ones whenever possible. High-end shops may sell their used equipment after a few years to upgrade to the latest technology, but some shops have machines that have been running for decades with only minor repairs and part replacements.
However, all industrial equipment has a finite lifespan, and even the most reliable machines eventually become unusable. When that happens, the only thing left to do is recycle or dispose of it. Fortunately, even non-working equipment contains valuable materials and components that can be recycled.
Lathes, milling machines, and other heavy machinery contain a variety of expensive components that allow them to cut metal or perform other difficult jobs. Shear brakes, for example, have blades made of high-strength stainless or carbon steel engineered to cut steel and other materials. Industrial equipment recycling companies will pay good money for these blades. Other manufacturing equipment may contain cutting tools, spindles, and other mechanical components that can be recycled. These components are usually made of steel or specialty metals that can be sold for more than the basic rate. For example, value can often be found from copper pulled from chiller units, transformers, and motors.
The hydraulic systems in equipment like presses are another source of valuable recyclable metals. Hydraulic lines are made of multiple materials, including high-strength grades of steel and aluminum, which allow them to withstand the pressure needed to generate tons of pressure.
Valuable Electronic Components Can Make Industrial Equipment Recycling Worthwhile
The electrical components are some of the most valuable materials in industrial equipment. Recycling these components and materials can help you recoup significant value from old equipment.
Copper is one of the most valuable and easily recycled metals. It’s found in all kinds of machinery due to its combination of physical and electrical properties, and it’s always in demand. Copper from industrial equipment can be worth a lot of money if it is recycled.
Any machine that runs on electricity probably contains copper in the form of wiring and circuit board components. Transformers contain copper or aluminum windings that can be recycled. Depending on the size of the transformer, these windings can add up to a lot of material. Transformers can be difficult to tear down due to the heavy steel casing, but industrial equipment recyclers are equipped to handle the job and can recycle the whole transformer for you.
Some electrical components use aluminum instead of copper as a conductor. While not quite as expensive as copper, aluminum is still a valuable metal for recycling. Electrical wiring, circuit boards, transformers, and other electrical components are worthwhile to recycle regardless of which material they are made of.
Many pieces of electrical equipment have batteries that contain lead and other recyclable metals. Large batteries like those found in electric forklifts can contain enough to be quite valuable. However, batteries also contain hazardous acids that can make scrapping them dangerous, so these should always be handled by industrial equipment recycling professionals.
Convenient, Local Industrial Equipment Recycling Solutions
Industrial Metal Service has been recycling industrial equipment in the Bay Area for more than two decades. We also supply new and remnant metals and provide a range of recycling services to manufacturers, fabricators, and machine shops in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. We’re proud of the reputation we’ve built with our clients as a professional, reliable, and trustworthy industrial equipment recycling provider.