What is the difference between ferrous and non-ferrous metals?

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What is the difference between ferrous and non-ferrous metals?

OFFERING BESPOKE SOLUTIONS FOR YOUR WASTE STREAMS

When it comes to metal, there are two main categories: ferrous and non-ferrous. The main thing that divides these two categories is that ferrous metals contain iron and non-ferrous metals do not. However, this is just a brief overview when comparing the two metal groups, and there is much more to this divide than solely iron content. 

This article will take a deeper look into how ferrous and non-ferrous metals differ from each other, their individual uses, recycling properties and much more.

 metal recycling

What is the difference between ferrous and non-ferrous metals?

In short, ferrous metals are largely made up of iron and non-ferrous metals are not. Both of these metal groups have their own individual benefits, so it is difficult to distinguish one as being more desirable than the other – the key is that the correct metal is chosen for an application so it can fulfil its function.

The types of ferrous metals include:

– Steel

– Stainless steel

– Alloy steel

– Carbon steel 

– Cast iron

– Wrought iron 

The types of non-ferrous metals include:

– Copper

– Aluminium

– Brass

– Zinc

– Tin

– Lead

What are the properties of ferrous metals?

Ferrous metals are known for their robust, durable qualities and impressive tensile strength, making them ideally suited for:

– Industrial and architectural fabrications (bridges, vehicles, railroads)

– Vehicles (brake drums, brake discs)

– Plant and machinery

– Manufacturing and construction industries

What are the properties of non-ferrous metals?

Although non-ferrous metals are generally not as strong as their ferrous counterparts, they are more malleable and have a higher resistance to corrosion. Not only that, copper is a great conductor of electricity and heat, and zinc is used to prevent iron and steel from rusting.

For these reasons, non-ferrous metals are widely used for industrial and commercial applications, such as gutters, roofing, pipes and electrical equipment, as well as for aircraft parts. Other uses include:

  • Manufacturing wires
  • Electrical power cables
  • Batteries

Are ferrous and non-ferrous metals recyclable?

Both ferrous and non-ferrous metals can be recycled – in fact, scrap metal is in high demand due to the amount of energy that can be saved during the recycling process compared with starting from scratch. A major benefit of non-ferrous metals is that they can be recycled over and over again as they don’t degrade, generally making them more valuable than ferrous metals. 

If you are searching for market-leading prices for your scrap metal in Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and nationwide, look no further than Synergy. We offer same-day payouts for your scrap at competitive rates – all you need to do is have your metal weighed on our specialist machine at our depot and we’ll take care of the rest. We accept both ferrous and non-ferrous metals, including electric motors, aluminium wheels, acid batteries, cars, pallet racking – the list goes on!

Want to know more? Simply give us a call or pay us a visit today.

Call Us On: 0114 697 0331
  • Top prices paid for all types of metals
  • Same-day payments made
  • Family-run business

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