When people think of car wreckers, they usually associate them with mountain-high pileups of old and worn-out cars. They’re synonymous with landfills with cars as the main component.
But, these images are slowly fading as car wreckers are getting a fresh reputation, thanks to their intensive use of technology and responsible methods of handling end-of-life vehicles.
Car wreckers are now the frontline of the automotive recycling industry. More than giving cash for your old, damaged, and non-drivable vehicle, they reclaim usable car parts and repurpose them into useful materials. At best, these professionals can recycle 85% of your car, effectively reducing vehicles in junkyards and landfills.
Curious as to how they transform something old, rusty, and worthless into something valuable? Take a quick read to know how car wreckers use high-tech processes throughout the vehicle recovery process.
Technologies Involved In The Vehicle Recovery Process
When you bring your vehicle to a car wrecker, they do more than estimate its value and give you money. In truth, a lot is going on after you leave their site.
Vehicle dismantling comes in four phases, with each involving technology in one way or another. Car wreckers Taupo or any place in the world employ these practices, especially when they double as auto recycling facilities.
From simple devices to sophisticated machines, technology is ever-present during the vehicle recovery process. Below is a brief outline and the various ways car wreckers use technology.
Draining Devices In The Depollution Phase
In the depollution phase, car wreckers remove all fluids in a vehicle. These include gas or diesel fuel, brake, and transmission fluids, gear oil, coolants, and air conditioner refrigerants.
The first technology that car wreckers use is machines that allow them to hoist vehicles to a certain height to drain a vehicle. Next, they use small pumps and portable removal devices to extract the liquids. Since some of these fluids are hazardous, car wreckers store them in specialized containers and ensure proper disposal or even resell them.
Deploy Tools And Heavy Equipment In The Dismantling Phase
Once the vehicle is fully drained, dismantlers such as car wreckers Rotorua remove usable parts and resell them as replacements for older vehicles. Reusable car parts include exteriors (doors, fenders, hood, rear hatch, bumpers, windows, and tires), interiors (seats, dashboard, stereo, GPS), and engine parts (suspension, transmission, battery, alternator, radiator, etc.)
Workers dismantle cars using simple tools. They separate metals from non-metals, such as fiberglass, wiring, etc. Once done, car wreckers use forklifts and other heavy equipment to transport the remaining hulk toward the next phase of the process.
Shredding Machines For Destruction Phase
Car wreckers can then choose to shred the cars in their scrap yard or opt to ship them elsewhere. For those that operate their own portable or stationary car crushers, these machines use hydraulic presses to compress the vehicle shells. They flatten the shells or reduce them into smaller cubes.
Depending on the size and capacity of the facility, these compressed metals can be processed on-site or sent to another facility. Further recycling transforms them into new car parts or other useful materials.
High-End Technology In Metals Recovery Phase
The final stage of the vehicle recovery process involves a lot of technology. At this point, the metal cubes are placed on magnetic conveyor belts that separate iron and steel from other metals.
Some advanced car wreckers may even employ high-end technologies, such as laser object detection (LOD) or x-ray fluorescence (XRF) to ensure efficient metal and non-metal recovery. Laser sensors can detect non-metals and remove them from the metal scrap.
On the other hand, XRF technology allows car wreckers and auto recyclers to identify metal alloys used in more recent car models. Recovered iron and steel are then sent to steel mills and made into new car parts or other materials.
What remains after all these is the so-called auto fluff, also known as the automotive shredder residue or ASR. This is a combination of plastic, fiber, glass, foam, wood, sand, and dirt that are deemed unusable. Recent research, however, explores the use of auto fluff as a component of concrete aggregates.
These sophisticated technologies ensure that car parts are reclaimed as far as possible. They also guarantee speedier identification and recycling.
In addition to these, car wreckers and automobile recovery facilities also use recycling software to manage scrap materials and ensure compliance with applicable state and federal laws. Software for documentation and materials management laws ensure that car wreckers adhere to high recycling standards.
Car wreckers anywhere in the world provide new life to old, damaged, and non-drivable vehicles. Intensive recovery efforts made possible by technology allow car wreckers to repurpose them into useful car components and as sustainable materials.
Draining devices and dismantling equipment separate fluids and non-metallic components. Shredding machines and high-end technologies, such as lasers, sensors, and x-rays, separate alloys and magnetic metals and allow further processing. Technology also ensures prompt and efficient recycling so that end-of-life vehicles can power up new and better ones in the future.