We have made good use of lead since prehistoric times, as this relatively heavy metal is quite easy to mine and it was widely used in Roman times. Lead is very malleable, making it popular for use as roof flashing, which covers different sections of a roof and can be hammered into the desired shape. Lead is sought-after by recyclers and if you would like to know where lead might be found, here are a few places.
- Roof Flashing – Lead was widely used (and still is) as roof flashing because it is easily formed into the right shape and is very durable. We’ve all heard of the lead thieves that used to raid churches in the past, removing the lead and selling it to a scrap yard and while lead theft still continues, it is rare, due to the rarity of lead. Copper is mainly the metal of choice for roof flashing today, although old buildings might have lead flashing.
- Old Furniture – Lead can sometimes be found in old furniture, typically to add weight, although not usually in great quantities. When you see the price of scrap lead per kilo in Sydney or even in other places, you realise you could have a lot of money in those old furniture pieces.
- Old Toys – Old toys might well contain lead in small amounts and children should not be allowed to play with such toys, as there is a risk of lead contamination. Today’s high standards prohibit the use of lead, with a few exceptions.
- Fishing Tackle – Anglers have long been using small lead weights to send their hooked bait to the bottom of the river or lake. These weights range from very small to 4 or 5 ounces for deep sea fishing. If you have a lot of old lead fishing weights, call in a local scrap metal dealer who would be happy to buy your scrap lead.
- Car Batteries – There is a lot of lead in an old car battery, which would have 6 lead plates that are immersed in distilled water, with each producing 2 Volts. Of course, you can’t throw a lead-acid battery in a landfill, rather call your local scrap dealer who would accept old batteries.
- Leaded Windows – Leadlight windows were once all the rage and if you have a house full of leaded light windows, that would be worth a lot as scrap. Thin strips of lead are placed in a criss-cross pattern over a pane of glass, which gives it a special look and although leaded light windows are rarely installed today, there are a few tradesmen that still work with lead.
Of course, lead is toxic and the greatest of care should be taken when handling lead; it is best to wear gloves and avoid direct contact with the skin. When you have scrap lead to sell, it is best to sort it and remove other materials, as this will get you the best price. The lead would be cleaned then melted down and cast into ingots and sold to various companies.