recycling old vehicles
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Focus on recycling in the automotive sector

Abandoning an end-of-life vehicle is prohibited by law for environmental reasons. When a car is used, some of its parts can be reused, upgraded or recycled.

US federal regulations for recycling old vehicles

In the United States, federal regulations regarding recycling old vehicles are primarily governed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). These regulations aim to reduce environmental impact, promote resource conservation, and ensure safe disposal practices.

The EPA mandates the proper handling and disposal of hazardous materials found in vehicles, such as batteries, fluids, and certain metals. Vehicle recyclers must adhere to strict guidelines for draining and managing these substances to prevent pollution and contamination of soil and water.

The NHTSA regulates the proper disposal of vehicle bodies to ensure they do not pose safety hazards or contribute to environmental degradation. This includes guidelines for dismantling, crushing, and recycling vehicle components in a manner that minimizes waste and maximizes material recovery.

Overall, these federal regulations for recycling old vehicles play a crucial role in promoting sustainability and responsible waste management practices within the automotive industry, safeguarding both public health and the environment.

How do you know if your vehicle is out of service

Before contacting an approved wrecker, you must first ensure that your car is beautiful and completely out of service. According to the law in the USA, a vehicle is considered to be out of service when it has suffered significant damage making its repair and circulation impossible. According to recent research, there are nearly two million and a half vehicles at the end of their life each year in America.

Who to contact to get rid of an ELV

When the time comes to part with your end-of-life vehicle, you will need to contact an approved center. Such a company should have years of experience in the recovery, destruction and recycling of ELVs and wrecks. Moreover, it should have a recycling center allowing ferrous and non-ferrous metals to be sorted and reused and should offer its services to individuals, businesses and communities.

What are the steps to follow to get rid of an ELV

The first step is to go to the government office to find out about the list of approved demolition and shredders in your city. If you don’t have enough time, you can consult the prefecture website.

What are the steps in recycling an ELV

When you entrust your ELV to an approved demolition company, the latter begins a whole series of operations before sorting and recycling itself. Details below.


Depollution is the first step carried out by an approved center. During this stage, hazardous waste is removed. These include, among others, brake and cooling fluids, diesel filters, oil filters, gearboxes and air conditioning fluids.


This second operation consists of removing and sorting the different parts. Some will be recovered and resold second-hand.


Grinding is the penultimate step before recycling. It is characterized by the separation of remaining materials such as plastic, aluminum and steel.


Here we are: recyclable elements will be processed to be transformed into different products such as base oil and fuel for industrial factories.

What elements can you recycle in a car

There are many recyclable elements in a car.

The tires

Tires can be processed into rubber granules and powder for use in construction and the rubber trade.

Engine oil

Engine oil, after having been changed, is extremely dangerous for the environment. However, it can be transformed into a new base oil for use in industrial warehouses.

The lightbulbs

Bulbs used for car lighting may contain precious materials and rare earths. They can be recycled and transformed into other products which will find new applications in the construction sector.


Plastic is the constituent element of a car’s doors, bumpers, dashboard and windshield wipers. When it is recycled, it will be used in other sectors such as the textile industry.


Metals are infinitely recyclable. They will be transformed into different elements which will be used in the agri-food sector and in construction.

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