How to Check Scrap Metal Prices in Chicago, IL

Chicago has been a key player in the steel and iron industry for centuries, even prior to the Civil War. By the middle of the 20th century, Chicago was a hub for steel and iron processing at all levels, and the industry employed thousands of people. Even though the industry’s peak is over, Chicago still has a booming scrap metal industry.  And scrap metal prices are a key factor in our Chicago cash for junk cars service.

The most common scrap metals include copper, aluminum, steel, iron, stainless steel, lead, and brass. These materials come in many forms, such as sheets, wires, tanks, fixtures, ornaments, and even old cars.

Scrap metals are highly competitive, and the prices have been increasing over the years. However, most dealers don’t display their prices per ton. Read on to know how to fetch the best scrap metal prices in Chicago, IL.

Your Best Resources

To find up-to-date information on scrap metal prices, American Metal Market is a great place to start.

For Chicago-specific scrap metal dealers, some of the best include:

  • Universal Scrap Metal on W Fulton St
  • Big Daddy Scrap in Chicago Heights
  • SRA Scrap Metal on S California Ave (Only contactable by phone)
  • JB Scrap Metal on W Carroll Ave

Know Your Scrap Metal

The first step towards pricing your scrap metal is identifying your metals accurately. There are hundreds of ferrous and nonferrous categories.

Therefore, making wild guesses of metal types by appearance won’t always get you the actual value of your scrap metal. Use these tips to obtain a reasonable estimate.

Differentiate Metal Types and Grade

The metal type and grade will come into play. For most scrap metals, type means the original use of the metal. For instance, common types of scrap copper include wire, roofing, and tubing.

Grade, on the other hand, refers to metal quality, usually presented in tiers. Copper comes in four quality levels, the best being bare bright, followed by #1, #2, and #3. Of the four grades, bare bright scrap copper fetches the best prices.

Separate Different Metal Types

If you’re looking to sell different scrap metals, it’s in your best interest to separate them into individual types. Many scrap metal buyers will offer the lowest prices for mixed lots.

The reason is not to dupe you, but because separating your various scrap metal types can be exceedingly time-consuming. Therefore, the dealer will typically offer rock bottom prices for unsorted scrap metal heaps.

Break Down Alloys into Percentages

Before selling an alloy, strive to find out the percentages of its constituent metals. For instance, Monel 400 contains about 63 percent nickel, up to 34 percent copper, and an insignificant iron and manganese content.

Therefore, the cost of a pound of scrap Monel 400 is roughly = (Price of a pound scrap nickel x 0.63) + (Price of a pound of scrap copper x 0.34).

Check Industry Demand

Construction, electronics, and tech manufacturers are the leading scrap metal consumers. For this reason, fluctuations in demand for metals in these industries influence scrap metal prices.

For instance, when the construction industry is booming, the prices of scrap iron and steel hike. Metals like copper also increase in prices when many people are buying new homes.

Selling Your Junk Car

Various scrap metal dealers in Chicago will offer different prices when you want to discard your junk car for cash. Most buyers and junkyards in Chicago use the formula below to quickly come up with a price estimate for a scrap car.

Junk car price = Scrap metal price per ton x Car weight in tons

The formula provides the lowest amount of money you can generate by selling your junk car. Understanding the calculation can shield you from falling for a raw deal.

How to Determine Car Weight

You can obtain the weight of your old automobile in several ways:

  • Checking the side door near the VIN
  • Referring to the user manual
  • Searching car specifications online
  • Consulting the manufacturer

Why the Minimum Junk Car Value?

Scrap metal dealers offer the lowest price for junk cars because most such vehicles are in bad shape. They may have some valuable parts that the dealer can strip off and sell. The yard may also sell the car’s essential metals to automakers and building companies.

However, it’s important to remember that not all car parts are metallic. Some materials like plastic, leather, and rubber are much cheaper than metal despite contributing to the total car weight.

Chicago Cash for Junk Car Company

Like in any other city, scrap metal prices in Chicago, IL, vary with buyers and seasons. It’s worth noting that some dealers offer more flexible and better quality services than others.

Would you like to make a decent amount of money from your junk car? Just give us a call to get started.

About The Author

Scroll to Top