What Is ASR?

Auto Shredder Residue (often referred to as “auto shredder fluff,” “shredder fluff,” or simply “fluff”) is the leftover materials after automobiles are recycled. Roughly 80-85% of the total weight of a vehicle can be processed via recycling. The remaining 15-20% of what’s left — typically fibers, foam, glass, rubber, wood, and other miscellaneous materials and textiles — is what constitutes auto shredder fluff.

Approximately five million tons of ASR is produced each year in the United States — most of which ends up in landfills. As space becomes increasingly limited in landfills and waste and recycling regulations tighten, the ASR screening and scrap metal sorting industry is now more important than ever.  

As the U.S. auto scrap industry is estimated at $32 billion in annual sales, the growth opportunities for scrap screening equipment have grown considerably. And since 1950, Aggregates Equipment, Inc. (AEI) has been on the cutting edge in the industry and looks to continue offering highly engineered and long-lasting solutions for the scrap metal market.

Scrap Metal Processing

Every year, 75 million automobiles reach their end of life. These end-of-life vehicles (ELV) go on to be processed and will supply the steel industry with approximately 14 million tons of steel. 

ELVs are recovered through a full range of equipment and are processed in four main steps:

  1. Dismantling
  2. Crushing
  3. Shredding
  4. Material Recovery

When ELVs are initially brought into the recycling facility, they are dismantled, and reusable materials are salvaged. Fluids are also removed in this stage. Reusable materials include batteries (lead-acid), tires, radios, fenders, starters, transmissions, and other components.

After all usable parts have been removed and fluids have been drained or salvaged, the ELV is sent to be crushed. Once items have been crushed and compacted, vehicles are then shredded, turned into smaller pieces, and loaded onto conveyor belts. Items are sorted and filtered using screens, vibrations, and other proprietary technology.

What Materials Can Be Recovered?

Through the process of material screening, these ASR materials and textiles can be recovered:

  • Wood
  • Rubber
  • Plastics
  • Sand
  • Dirt
  • Paper
  • Leather
  • Glass
  • Textiles

Challenges of Screening ASR and Recycling Scrap

The challenges that the ASR industry faces include meeting global demands as well as adhering to local, state, federal, and world-wide regulations. Safety, procedure, and waste policies must be considered throughout scrap processing.

While the ASR and scrap metal processing industry has become more regulated every year since its inception, these regulations aim to ensure a more environmentally friendly process as well as reduce waste and minimize harm from materials.

In addition to regulations, other challenges of scrap include:

Scrap Metal Recycling Operations

This includes the careful planning, preparation, and execution of waste practices. Establishing a proper workflow is crucial. 

Mix of Materials

A result of scrapping in which mixed items (such as plastics, cables, glass, fines, and ferrous and non-ferrous material) need to be separated.

Particle Size Variation

Scrap metal comes in a wide range of particle sizes, from small flakes and chips to large pieces. The variation in particle size affects the efficiency of scrap processing and screening, requiring adjustments in equipment settings.

Inefficient Processing Methods

Traditional screening methods, such as standard vibrating screens and trommels, have become outdated and inefficient. Additionally, improper ASR screening leads to material contamination that requires additional sorting and processing. If you end up losing valuable metals, it will decrease the potential revenue from recycling operations.

AEI is an industry leader in screening solutions for the ASR and scrap markets. We understand the needs of our customers and custom engineer screening solutions to meet the challenges of today’s scrap metal industry.

AEI’s Auto Shredder & Scrap Screening Solutions

Our metals sizing solutions include the Freedom Disc Screen and the BIVITEC flip flow screen. 

The Freedom Disc Screen

AEI’s Freedom Disc Screen is a high-capacity, efficient screening solution designed to size difficult materials. Featuring robust HARDOX discs, the Freedom Disc Screen sizes ASR and metals without clogging, wrapping. or blinding the screen – unlike traditional trommels.


Meanwhile, the BIVITEC flip flow screen uses a unique dual-vibratory screening process to transfer high-acceleration forces to the feed material. Ideal for separating fines from auto shredder fluff, the BIVITEC rounds out a complete solution to your scrap metal processing and sizing needs.

Request a quote online for more information or call 717-656-2131 to speak with our sales team and learn more about AEI’s screening solutions.