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Guide to Recycling Precious Metals

Every year, an unimaginable amount of precious metal goes to waste in landfills. This is because people don’t know they can recycle jewelry or electronics containing these metals and because there are few refineries up to the task. Solid Equipment Company aims to change the status quo by offering the equipment necessary to separate precious metals from scrap and sell them for a profit, thereby helping the environment and our customers thrive.

What Are Precious Metals?

A precious metal is a natural metallic chemical element that has a low supply and a high value. They are generally more flexible and less reactive than more commonly available metals. The primary four precious metals are:

  • Silver
  • Gold
  • Platinum
  • Palladium

These metals can be found in some astonishing places. In addition to being found in coins, jewelry, and electronics, precious metals appear in X-ray film, catalytic converters, and electrophysiology catheters.

How Are Precious Metals Recycled?

The first step is to collect all the materials you believe contain precious metals. When you’re working primarily with jewelry, the process is simple. If you are working with large batches of scrap, it’s crucial to sort out the metals visually or use tools like high-powered magnets. It can be helpful to compress the recovered metals with something like a scrap metal baler to make the next step easier.

The metals should then be shredded using equipment like hydraulic shears. Shredded metals melt faster and more evenly, which results in less energy waste through the process.

After being melted, the metal must be purified and checked for homogeneity. Once the batch is confirmed to be thoroughly mixed and contaminant-free, the melted metal is typically poured into a bar-shaped mold to solidify. The bar shape is standard and makes it easier to sell to a variety of different merchants.

The Impact of Recycling Precious Metals

Collecting, sorting, and fully recycling precious metals can seem challenging, but the payoff is tangible from two perspectives. The United Nations estimates that about $10 billion worth of precious metals in electronic waste is dumped in landfills each year. This growing mountain of electronic waste is causing severe pollution issues that can be mitigated with more robust recycling efforts.

On the other hand, this means there is an untapped market for these wasted metals, so industrious individuals or organizations can make a significant profit while at the same time making a dent in climate change.

Solid Equipment Company is here to help by providing the specialty equipment you need to recycle precious metals effectively. Call us at (866) 511-7720 for more information on how we can fulfill your needs.

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