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What Are the Dangers of Burning Aluminum Cans?

Updated November 21, 2016

Aluminium cans, such as those used for soda and beer, are recyclable. For people not near a recycling centre, or for those looking for aluminium scrap, it can be tempting to try to burn them.

Burning Cans

People who do metal work and need aluminium can burn cans to obtain it, according to "Woodshop Dust Control." Some campers who do not wish to pack out cans from a campsite might consider burning them as an alternative.

Dangers

Aluminium cans require a very hot fire in order to burn. Because they are so thin, the metal often oxidises and chars. This makes it unusable to metal workers and difficult for campers to transport. Dust from damaged aluminium cans can be a fire danger.

Solutions

For campers, it is safest to crush cans and carry them out of the campsite, according to "Canoeing & Camping Beyond the Basics." For metal workers, it is easiest to melt a can into a molten pool of aluminium.

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