Statistics

Automotive Recycling Facts

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Automotive Recycling Facts 2018-2019

In the United States alone, there are some 275 million operating motor vehicles that are registered within their respective states of jurisdiction. Like every machine, no motor vehicle lasts forever. In the United States, on average, automobiles last anywhere between eight and 15 years. At this rate, somewhere between 18 and 34 million automobiles go out of service. The majority of them are ultimately recycled and used in other applications, including automobile manufacturing.

You probably – just like almost every other United States citizen – don’t know too much about the automotive recycling industry. To enlighten you on the business, here are six facts about the automotive recycling industry.

1. More People Than You Think Work In The Automotive Recycling Business

In the United States alone, there are some 100,000 workers in the automotive recycling field. Ultimately, the industry’s competitors drum up roughly $25 billion, collectively, in a year’s time. Knowing how many facilities there are in the United States that offer to recycle motor vehicles is also pretty cool.

Unless you’ve worked in the business yourself, you have probably seen at least one automotive recycling location while out and about, though likely no more than five or 10. You might not believe it, but the United States is home to more than 7,000 facilities that recycle motor vehicles.

Thanks to people all over the world becoming more interested in cleaning up after themselves and recycling as much as possible, the domestic recycling business isn’t going anywhere.

2. The Vast Majority Of Competitors In The Field Are Small Businesses

The United States, statistics have long said, is the best place in the world for people from foreign countries to emigrate to, start up their very own small businesses, and ultimately succeed. We have such a fertile ground for growing small businesses because nearly the entirety of United States citizens – from the top of the socioeconomic ladder to the bottom – have money to stimulate the economy with.

In automotive recycling, statistics show that some 86 percent of all automotive recycling businesses are small businesses that employ no more than 10 workers.

One reason why there are so many small businesses in the domestic automotive recycling industry is that people who carry scrap metal, including to-be-scrapped vehicles, to recycling businesses don’t like to carry it very far.

From there, the local automotive recycling facilities carry compacted scrap metal in tractor trailers a few hours’ drive to the largest city in their vicinity. Wholesale automotive recyclers in such areas are almost always willing to pay significantly more than those in smaller cities.

3. Recycling Motor Vehicles Doesn’t Just Reduce Metal Waste

Many raw materials are expended in the manufacturing of new motor vehicles. One of these raw materials is petroleum. Statistics show that, around the world, facilities that recycle automobiles that are at the end of their working lives collectively prevent some 85 million barrels of oil from being used in making new cars and trucks.

4. American Aluminum Recyclers Have Done A Great Job

Ever since aluminum began being mined and processed in the United States, countless billions of tons’ worth of the valuable, sturdy, lightweight metal has been created by the country. All considered, roughly 75 percent of all aluminum ever mined or recycled in the United States is still in use today.

5. Automobile Recycling Provides Lots Of Iron To The Nation

Iron is one of the most popular metals used in manufacturing today. Motor vehicles that have been recycled in the United States contribute more than one-third of the total of the nation’s ferrous metals processed in-house.

6. Here’s How Much Of Automobiles That Can Actually Be Recycled

Unfortunately, motor vehicles can’t entirely be recycled. However, we do a good job at recycling as much as possible, collectively recycling some 86 percent of the material cars contain in terms of total weight.