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Method for recycling waste cables

waste cable wire

With the improvement of people’s living standards, household appliances, vehicles (cars, motorcycles, electric vehicles, etc.) are also becoming increasingly popular, and the use of wires and cables is increasing. With the replacement of these things, the amount of waste disposal is also increasing. What should we do with the recycling and reuse of waste wires and cables? What are the ways to turn waste wires and cables into treasure?

Recycling waste wire and cable, we mainly want to obtain the non-ferrous metal copper in it. So for the waste wires and cables we recycle, we have to ask how to deal with them. No matter which method is used, the ultimate goal is to separate the copper from the wire. Running along with this result, we have the waste wire and cable treatment methods such as burning, peeling, crushing, freezing and so on. In the following, we summarize the recycling processing methods of waste wires and cables as follows.

Peeling by hand

This method uses a manual method to peel the wire and cable’s skin, which has high efficiency and low cost. It is better to handle some cables and square wires. If it is some automotive wires, network cables, household appliance disassembly wires, and other small diameter wires, Its effect is poor. With the current economic development, labor costs are getting higher and higher, and fewer and fewer people use this method to treat waste wires and cables.


This method is a more traditional method, which uses the combustible nature of the wire sheath to directly burn waste wires and cables and then recycling the copper inside. The copper was taken out by the fire. During the process of incineration of the wire, the copper wire showed severe oxidation, which reduced the recycling rate of non-ferrous metals. In addition, the burning wire has great pollution to the environment. Today, when the country is striving to protect the environment, it is explicitly prohibited.

Obtaining copper wire by incineration
Obtaining Copper Wire By Incineration

Mechanical peeling method

This method uses a wire stripping machine, which is a semi-mechanical operation, requires a human, and has a high labor intensity. More importantly, this method is only suitable for some single-strand square and cable wires with larger diameters. If we recycle raw materials such as automobile wires, household wires, network cables, electronic wires, it is not suitable to use wire stripping equipment.

Mechanical crushing method.

In this method, copper and plastic separators are used for separation, and crushing and sorting are used. First, the waste wires and cables are peeled by pulverization, and then copper and plastic are separated by means of water washing, air separation, and electrostatic separation. The method is applicable to a wide range of materials, such as not only thick square wires and cable wires, but also automobile wires, motorcycle wires, electric car wires, network wires, communication wires, household appliance dismantling wires, and electronic wires. At the same time, compared with mechanical peeling equipment, its output is higher, which greatly reduces the intensity of manual work. Because of the non-washing characteristics of dry-type cable recycling equipment, today’s strict environmental protection today, its market demand is relatively large.

Chemical method

When we talk about the word “chemistry”, we think of environmental issues most. Indeed, this method uses chemical potions, which are separated from the copper by soaking the potions. The problem is that the medicinal solution produced is not easy to handle and will cause large environmental pollution. Therefore, this method is only in the experimental stage and has not been put into civilian use.

Copper wire obtained by chemical reagent method
Copper Wire Obtained By Chemical Reagent Method

Freezing method.

This method was also proposed in the 1990s. It uses liquid nitrogen as a refrigerant, so that waste wires and cables are frozen at ultra-low temperature and become brittle, and then broken and shaken to separate plastic and copper. This method has a high cost, is difficult to operate on a large scale, and has not been put into actual production.

In the above, we have introduced various methods for recycling waste wires and cables. However, the more common method is mechanical crushing. At present, there are many manufacturers of cable recycling machines in the market, so you need to be careful when buying them.

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