Auto Recycling: What Happens to Cars That Aren’t Recycled?

Have you ever wondered what happens to cars that aren’t recycled? Unlike food and drink containers, vehicles can’t be thrown in a recycling bin and sent to a facility where they become new products. Instead, they must be sold or donated to a junkyard that sells their used components, and then liquidates the leftover scrap metal to a business that recycles it, or processes it and sells it to a recycler.

If you sell or donate your car to a junkyard that doesn’t participate in auto recycling, used parts from the vehicle may still be sold. However, the leftover frame, body, and engine parts are likely sit in the junkyard until it they are removed to make room for more vehicles. In some cases, the leftover metal is removed to a landfill, where it is gradually covered up with other detritus. This can create serious problems for the environment, problems that auto recycling helps prevent.

Soil Pollution

Old cars have accumulations of grease and oil inside the engine compartment that enter the soil when they are compacted and buried. Removing the engine lowers the threat. However, unless the engine compartment is cleaned with eco friendly degreaser, it can still contain substantial amounts of grease and oil. When landfills fill up and are covered over, these substances in the soil can make it difficult for plants and trees to thrive.

Water Pollution

After substances from the engine compartment enter in the soil, rainfall washes a percentage of the accumulation into natural bodies of water, where it damages aquatic habitats. Streams and ponds around landfills often test high for toxic substances. Engine fluids that permeate landfill soil and are transported into these water bodies by rain is one reason why.

Air Pollution

Putting materials from old vehicles in a landfill indirectly pollutes the air. At big landfills, bulldozers and backhoes reposition and bury junk to make room for additional waste. As they operate, these machines emit toxic exhaust fumes that fill the air. A landfill may also burn combustible materials to create more room, a practice that can also cause toxic fumes to enter the air.

Need to get rid of an old car?

If so, sell it Wrench-A-Part. We will sell the good parts on your car, and then sell the scrap metal to a business that works with recyclers. Our auto recycling program profits both our customers and the environment. To find out how much your automobile is worth, contact our location in Austin, Belton, or Lubbock today, or click here to use our contact form.

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