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How to Dispose of Spent Steel Shot Safely

For many companies, spent steel shot waste goes straight to the landfill. Recycling offers a cost conscious and sustainable alternative.

Steel shot finds widespread application across industries for tasks like surface preparation and cleaning, due to its effective abrasive properties. However, the use of steel shot raises concerns about environmental impact and safe disposal. 

The environmental impact of steel shot stems from its production process and disposal. Cast steel shot production involves energy-intensive methods like mining, smelting, and refining, leading to greenhouse gas emissions like carbon dioxide and methane.

Disposing of steel shot can also pose environmental challenges due to potential contaminants such as oil and rust, which can pollute soil and water if not handled properly, impacting ecosystems and human health.

To minimize these impacts, adopting proper disposal methods is crucial:

  1. Recycling:  Recycling steel shot reduces waste, saves energy, and conserves resources. This can be done on-site or through specialized recycling facilities like Wisdom Environmental. Spent steel shot is often cleaned, sorted by size, and reused in finer grit applications. 
  1. Landfilling:  If recycling isn’t feasible, steel shot can sometimes be disposed of in landfills if it is free from contaminants. However, in recent years, this has become more difficult. While steel shot dust itself is not flammable, if it is mixed with other combustible materials in a landfill and the conditions are right (such as sufficient oxygen supply, heat source, and presence of other flammable substances), there could be a risk of combustion or fires. Steel shot dust may contain residues of oils, coatings, or other substances that could contribute to flammability if they come into contact with ignition sources. For contaminated steel shot, safe disposal involves treating them to remove contaminants before recycling or landfilling,
  1. Incineration: While less eco-friendly, incineration at high temperatures is an option for disposal.

In promoting sustainability, using recycled steel shot significantly reduces environmental impact by requiring less energy and resources compared to new production methods. Wisdom Environmental offers quality recycled steel shot for sale – screened, screened, and sized to SAE specifications.

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