Scrap Copper Recycling: The VALUE of Your Old Cables!

As an entrepreneur and engineer passionate about sustainability, I understand the importance of recycling scrap copper. I’m here to help you unlock the value of your old cables through scrap copper recycling. Through this blog post, I’ll share my expertise on how to responsibly recycle your scrap copper and turn it into something useful!

Scrap copper recycling is the process of collecting and reusing scrap copper for new products. Copper is a valuable metal that can be recycled over and over again without losing its properties. Benefits of scrap copper recycling include:

  • Reduced energy consumption
  • Reduced environmental impact
  • Cost savings in production costs
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Scrap Copper Recycling Prices

Scrap copper prices can vary from one region to another, as well as due to the general market conditions. However, here are the average scrap copper prices for recycling in the USA:

Scrap Copper TypePrices per lbPrices per ton
Bare Bright Copper Wire$3.8 – $4.5$7’600 – $9’000
Copper Wire 75%$2.5 – $2.65$5’000 – $5’300
Copper Wire 65% (2 Jackets)$2.2 – $2.3$4’400 – $4’600
Copper Wire 50% (Comm)$1.34 – $1.4$2’680 – $2’800
Bare Copper Pipe$3.7 – $4.2$7’400 – $8’400
Painted Copper Pipe$3.4 – $3.5$6’400 – $7’000
Average Scrap Copper Prices 2023

As you can see, not all copper wires have the same value, and if you are looking to max out your profit, there is a simple way to do it.

How to make more money when selling scrap copper?

If you want to make more money when recycling your scrap copper wire, you should strip it from all of its plastic jackets.

This will take some time, but then you will be able to sell your copper for a much higher price because there is more than a $1 per pound premium for bare bright copper wire! That’s a hefty 30+% premium for who does the job.

How Does Scrap Copper Recycling Work?

Scrap copper recycling is the process of recovering scrap copper and turning it into usable materials. It involves sorting, collecting, and processing scrap copper to create a valuable raw material that can be used in manufacturing new products.

Copper has many uses in industry, from electrical wiring to plumbing components. By recycling scrap copper, we can reduce waste while also helping to conserve natural resources.

Recycling scrap copper also helps reduce energy consumption during production processes. This is because recycled copper requires less energy to produce than virgin materials. In addition, the reuse of existing metals reduces air pollution by reducing the need for smelting operations.

Benefits of Recycling Copper

Recycling copper is a great way to improve our sustainability and get closer to sustainable development. In fact, recycling is also one of the 6 Rs of sustainability!

1. Reduced Energy Consumption

Recycling scrap copper, as well as other scrap metal, reduces energy consumption during production processes since recycled metal does not require as much energy to produce as virgin materials do. This means fewer emissions are released into the atmosphere from smelting operations.

2. Reduced Environmental Impact

By reusing existing metals instead of creating new ones from scratch, the amount of pollutants released into the environment is reduced significantly. In addition, recycling helps reduce the need for mining and conserve natural resources such as ore and water by reducing demand for them.

3. Cost Savings in Production Costs

Recycled metal costs less than virgin material since there’s no need for extra extraction or refining steps like with virgin material. This cost savings can help businesses cut down their production costs significantly while still producing high-quality products.

Unlocking the Value of Your Old Cables Through Scrap Copper Recycling

When it comes to extracting value from old cables through scrap copper recycling, there are several different types that you should consider. Below, we’ll discuss each type so you know what kind of cable you may have lying around your home or office.

Types of Scrap Copper to Collect for Recycling

Scrap copper is a great source of income for those looking to make a profit from their scrap metal. The types of scrap copper that can be recycled vary, from insulated wire and tubing to sheets and bright shiny pieces. It’s important to know what type of scrap you have so you can properly sort it into the right bins or categories.

Scrap Copper Tubing #1

Scrap copper tubing #1 is the most common form of scrap copper. This type consists of clean, untinned, uncoated copper solids and must be free of paint, excessive oxidation, plastic, other non-metallic items, and any other contaminants. It can typically be found in plumbing pipes or electrical wiring.

  • Clean
  • Untinned
  • Uncoated Copper Solids

Free from paint, oxidation, plastic, and other non-metallic items.

Scrap Copper Tubing #2

This type includes all the same qualities as number one but also has some contamination such as paint or insulation on it. It may also contain solder or brass fittings attached to it.

  • Contains Contamination
  • May include Solder or Brass Fittings

Scrap Copper Sheet

This type consists of flat pieces made up mostly of clean copper alloy with some minor attachments such as insulation material or paint. It should not contain any plastic components.

  • Flat Pieces Made Up Mostly Of Clean Copper Alloy
  • Minor Attachments Such As Insulation Material Or Paint

Scrap Copper Bright & Shiny

This type consists mainly of bare bright wire that has been stripped off its insulation coating. It should not contain any plastic components.

Copper Insulated Wire 85%

Insulated copper wire is one of the most common types of scrap copper. It’s estimated that up to 85% of all copper scrap comes from this type of wiring, making it a valuable resource for recycling.

Copper insulated wire can be found in old cables, wires, electronics, and other appliances. When recycled properly, it can be used to create new products while reducing waste.

Copper Insulated Wire 75%

Insulated copper wire is one of the most valuable types of scrap copper to collect for recycling. It’s made up of 75% pure copper, making it easy to refine and reuse in manufacturing processes.

Copper Insulated Wire 70%

Insulated copper wire is a type of scrap copper that has an insulation layer surrounding the metal core. This type of wire can be found in old electrical installations, such as wiring for appliances, lighting fixtures and other electronics. Copper insulated wire is usually composed of up to 70% copper and 30% plastic or rubber insulation material.

Recycling this type of scrap copper can help reduce waste from job sites and make a positive impact on the environment. The cost savings in production costs are also considerable since recycling reduces energy consumption compared to mining new ore. Additionally, recycled copper helps preserve natural resources by reducing the demand for primary copper.

Insulated Copper (Romex) Wire 65%

Romex wire is a common type of electrical wiring used in residential buildings. It consists of two or more insulated conductors surrounded by a non-metallic sheath made from PVC or Nylon. The conductors inside are typically composed of up to 65 percent copper with the remainder being aluminum or another alloy.

Note that also scrap aluminum can be recycled, but it is much less valuable than copper.

Scrap Copper Wire (Comm) Number 2 – 50%

Scrap copper insulated wire number two contains between 50-60 percent pure copper content with some additional alloys mixed in depending on its original purpose. This type of scrap generally comes from motors, transformers, generators, alternators and other electrical equipment where insulation materials have been removed already.

This form of scrap can still contain small amounts of plastic which must be removed prior to sale or reuse. Recycling this form of scrap requires sorting into bins based on type which could result in higher profits due to increased purity levels.

Copper Insulated Wire 55%

Recycling insulated copper wire is a great way to unlock the value of your old cables. Copper insulated wire 55% is one of the most common types of scrap copper, and it can be recycled for a variety of uses. With proper sorting and processing, you can turn this scrap into cash or other products.

Copper Insulated Wire 50%

Scrap copper insulated wire 50% is still a valuable resource for recyclers, so don’t bin it!

Copper Insulated Wire 45 – 40 and 35%

Copper is a valuable metal even at only 35% recovery rate, and its price fluctuates with the economy. Secondary metal refining techniques are used to clean up scrap before use in manufacturing processes and reliable supplies of primary copper are necessary when refining scrap metal alloys. Unlock the value of your old cables by recycling insulated copper wire today!


How much copper is required to make one pound of wire?

A pound of copper wire is typically made up of around 12 to 16 feet of wire, depending on the gauge. The thicker the wire, the fewer feet are needed to make a pound. Copper wiring is available in several gauges and lengths, so it’s important to choose the right size for your project.

What is the current value of copper in the market?

The current market price of copper is on the rise due to increased demand. As of January 2023, the average price for a pound of copper is about $4.2 USD. This reflects an increase in value over time and makes it a low-risk investment option.

What is the record-high cost of copper?

Copper is a highly sought-after metal, with its price steadily increasing in recent years. The highest price copper has ever been was recorded in March 2022, when it hit an all-time high of $5.02. This broke the previous record of 2011 when it hit a high of $4.63 per pound.

How much does 1000 feet of copper wire weigh?

1000 feet of copper wire weighs approximately 500 pounds. Copper is a dense material, which means it has a high weight-to-volume ratio. This makes it an ideal choice for wiring applications, as the weight of the copper ensures that the wires stay in place.

What is the price per pound of copper today?

Copper has been a valuable commodity for many years, and its worth has been steadily increasing. As of today, copper is trading between $1.80 and $4.5 USD per pound depending on the type of copper.

What is the value of one pound of copper?

A pound of copper is currently worth approximately $4.23 or between $1.80 and $4.5 USD for scrap copper depending on its condition. The price of copper fluctuates often, so it’s important to stay up-to-date on the current market value. Copper is a valuable commodity that has seen an increase in demand over recent years, and its value is likely to continue to rise.

Will the value of copper increase in the future?

The future of copper is bright, as demand for the metal continues to rise. With its low-risk investment potential and increasing value, it is likely that copper will gain further value in the long run. As new applications for copper are discovered and developed, the price of this versatile metal could continue to increase.


Scrap copper recycling, like recycling cardboard (especially if baled) and other materials, is a great way to unlock the value of your old cables and put some extra money in your pocket. With the right knowledge and resources, you can easily turn your unwanted cables into cash.

Whether you’re a sustainable business, looking to make a few extra dollars, or simply want to do something good for the environment, scrap copper recycling is an excellent option.

By taking advantage of scrap copper recycling, you can help reduce waste while making some extra money in the process. Don’t let those old cables go to waste, start scrap copper recycling now!