What are some common things made of copper? Many people can only name 3 to 5 common things made of copper when asked. It’s not that you’re not surrounded by copper everywhere that you go, because you are indeed.
Most things that are made of copper are typically covered up or hidden within shells and cases making it harder to find.
We have more information available about copper scrap but first, let’s get into this list of common things made of copper so you know what to look for while you’re out there on the road.
Things Made Of/Or Contain Copper
- Vehicle Alternators
- Christmas Lights
- Extension Cords
- Sound Speakers
- Ethernet Cable
- TV Cable
- USB Cable
- Headphone Cable
- Microphone Cable
- Jumper Cables
- Plumbing Pipes/Fittings
- Surge Protectors
- Internet Modem
- Cable Box
- Televisions (especially tubes)
- Air Conditioners
- Distillery Items
- Home Fire Pits (some)
- Copper Nail
- Copper Staples
- Copper Screws
- Gutter Systems
- Fan Motors (home, auto, industrial)
- Old Telephone Cords (landline)
- Power Tools
- Deck Post Tops
- Kitchen Sinks
- Bathroom Sinks
- Copper Roof Tiles
- Thermostats (vehicle)
- Game Consoles
- Drone Motors
- Heat Exchange Tubing
- Copper Busbars
- Copper Terminals
- Induction Coils
- Magnetic Relays
There are many things that I haven’t named on this list that contain copper scrap. I come across many new things today that I am finding copper scrap in as well. This list is of items that contain enough copper scrap to make the effort of collecting the scrap worthwhile.
Copper is a beautiful metal once it has been refined. Although you can readily find copper, it isn’t treated as an inferior scrap metal. You won’t likely see a copper toaster, coffee pot or microwave in the break room at your job. Products made out of copper scrap such as a copper bathroom sink or tub are considered high-end.
Copper Currency Coins
You’re probably wondering why or you might not have noticed that copper coins like pennies are not on the list.
Modern pennies are not 100% copper. They look as though they are copper in appearance but they, like a lot of gold jewelry, are sort of dipped in copper.
Pennies that were minted between 1909 – 1982 are made of 95% copper. Scrap metal yards typically should not accept pennies as scrap metal. There are always some folks not doing the right thing but that doesn’t mean they’re right.
Coin currency is normally collected and sold or traded to other collectors.
Coins, if you look closely, have a small individual letter stamped on them as well. It’s usually under the date but can also be printed on the tales, side of the coin. The letter indicates where the coin was created (minted).
S = San Francisco
P = Philadelphia
No Letter = Philadelphia
Let’s say you found a handful of old pennies from 1914. During this year, pennies were minted with no letter, which means they came from Philadelphia. They were also minted with an S and a D.
1914 Penny – No Letter
Good $0.25 – $0.50 – Fine $0.50 – $1 – Extra Fine $12 – $13 – Uncirculated $40+
1914 D Penny
Good $125 – $140 – Fine $175 – $200 – Extra Fine $600 – $650 – Uncirculated $1700+
1914 S Penny
Good $17 – $19 – Fine $23 – $26 – Extra Fine $60 – $65 – Uncirculated $250+
These values are not set in stone. They may fluctuate slightly which is why I’ve given the prices in ranges. These are not scrap metal prices, they are coin value prices.
Check that handful of pennies over carefully.
Pennies minted between 1909 – 1903 with an S or D on them are most valuable. All pennies minted between 1864 – 1909 are very valuable. Be sure to store these coins properly. Most collectors use coin sheets or individual coin storage cases.
I hope that you have learned more than you knew about copper and the many uses for copper. Be on the look out for many of the things that I listed when you’re out hunting for scrap metal.
If you’re inspired and want to look into collecting old coins just do your research and I know you will do well. Start by checking your cup-holder, vehicle armrest or your junk drawer at home. You may just find your wishing well. Stay safe out there and always scrap metal responsibly.