Scrap Metal Recycling FAQ

Important Legal Information About
Non-Ferrous Scrap Metal Recycling

Details on the Scrap Metal Recycling Law:

  • Each time you bring a load of non-ferrous scrap metal to Earthworks for recycling, you must have a government issued, photo ID. This can include a current (not expired) driver’s license, identification card, tribal identification or passport. Check the status of your driver’s license or ID to see if it is valid at
  • Prison IDs or punched, damaged ID cards WILL NOT be accepted.
  • Anyone selling non-ferrous scrap metal must be at least 18 years of age.
  • For each transaction we will also record your current street address and phone number and obtain your signature swearing that the metals you are selling are not stolen.
  • If the total value of the metals you bring in is greater than $30, we give the first $30 in cash and the rest of the total is issued by check and handed to you at the time of the transaction.
    Different rules apply to business customers.
  • You will not be paid cash more than once per day.
  • We are not able to purchase wire that has been burnt unless you have proof of a “legal burn.”
  • We are not able to buy kegs except from breweries or keg manufacturers.
  • We are not able to buy irrigation wheels, pipes, or sprinkler heads unless you are associated with a business or can provide written documentation that you are the legal owner of the property.

Exceptions for Business Customers
If your business handles non-ferrous scrap metals and brings them in for recycling, we are able to pay you cash after the appropriate paperwork is on file.

We have a form for business customers which must be filled out by the business owner or manager. The form requires general company information and must be accompanied by a copy of your business license, either presented in person or faxed to us. We also must keep a record of all employees that are authorized to deliver scrap metals on the company’s behalf, as well as their vehicle description and vehicle license plate number.

After this paperwork is on file, we are able to pay cash to any employee on file for the company. The person selling the metal must bring a valid government issued picture ID and sign our form saying that the metals are not stolen.

You can download a copy of our Record for Commercial Account form and bring it with you the next time you bring in recyclables.

Frequently Asked Questions about SB5312

Are aluminum cans included in the $30 limit for scrap metal?

No, aluminum cans are not included in calculating the $30 limit for scrap metal recycling. You will always be paid cash for aluminum cans. Return to Top

How can I recycle burnt wire?

We are unable to recycle wire that has been burnt, unless you are able to show proof that it was legally burned. An example of a legal burn would be wire that was burnt during a house fire, with proof from the fire department or insurance company.

Who can I contact to voice my concerns about the new law?

If you’re unhappy about the non-ferrous scrap metal recycling law (SB 5312), call your senator or one of your representatives, and let them know! This law passed unanimously.

Most City of Spokane residents are represented by District 3