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6 Ways National Fleets Can Benefit from DPF, DOC and Catalyst Recycling

on November 15, 2023

Whether you’re a large national fleet, leasing company, or dealer group, it might be time to leverage your size and capture the income from recycling scrap emission parts. With a range of potential benefits, more and more large regional and national fleets are taking a closer look and implementing centralized recycling programs for diesel particulate filters (DPFs), diesel oxidation catalysts (DOCs,) and three-way catalysts (TWCs).

Red Fox has developed customized recycling programs for many of the Top 100 Fleets to manage the scrap from emission control parts. These fleets have seen steady revenue generation and sustainability benefits through their programs.

Outlined below are details of the types of fleets that can leverage a customized recycling program and the primary value they are seeing.

What are the characteristics of an operation that might fit this type of recycling model?

  • You operate 300+ medium or heavy-duty vehicles (diesel or natural gas)
  • You operate your own service and maintenance facilities
  • You operate your own regional parts distribution centers to aggregate parts
  • You’re able to aggregate and ship 20+ emission parts (DPFs, DOCs, TWCs) at a time
  • You’re interested in the added income from emissions parts recycling
  • You want to discourage employees from selling your used emission parts for cash
  • Your company is committed to sustainability and zero waste programs
  • You’re committed to working with a proven recycling partner who has a proven track record working with leading OEMs, fleets, dealer groups, transit agencies, utilities and municipalities

What are the key benefits businesses are seeing through their recycling model?

1. Revenue Generation – When done right, recycling emission control parts at scale can bring efficiencies that create an increased level of income for large national fleet operators. Although they may look like waste or scrap metal, most used emission control parts contain some form of platinum group metals (PGM) and a value far greater than scrap metal and certainly don’t belong in a landfill. Depending on geography, scrap metal values range from 5¢/pound to 30¢/pound, compared to values of $3.00/pound to $50.00/pound for DPFs, DOCs and TWCs. For comparison, below are the scrap values of 100 lbs of each type of scrap metal.

100 lbs of scrap metal: $30 ($0 to 30¢/pound)
100 lbs of scrap DPF PGM honeycomb material: $300 – $600 ($3 to $6/pound)
100 lbs of scrap DOC PGM honeycomb material: $1,500 – $2,000 ($15 to $20/pound)
100 lbs of scrap TWC PGM honeycomb material: $3,500 – $5,000 ($35 to $50/pound)

Emission Control Parts Scrap Value Comparison in 2021
2. Sustainability – Many companies have a commitment to sustainability as a means to how they operate their business. Recycling is an easy and impactful way to improve the economic and environmental sustainability of our communities, economy, and supply chain. In most cases, it helps conserve natural resources, reduces environmental impact (i.e. water, air, energy, waste, pollution) and supports a localized circular economy while reducing product costs.

3. Zero Waste – Like sustainability, many companies have a commitment to zero waste or waste reduction programs. Recycling emission control parts (DPFs, DOCs, and Three-Way Catalysts) helps businesses meet these zero waste commitments while reducing their environmental impact and conserving natural resources.

4. Supply Chain Benefits – Manufacturers talk a lot about developing a “sustainable supply chain.” A sustainable supply chain makes great business sense for manufacturers because producing products with reusable materials can be less costly than using all-new raw materials, reduces waste, and ensures the long-term availability of products. Recycling emission control parts is a perfect example of how businesses can promote a sustainable supply chain while keeping down costs for new products and parts.

5. Good for America – The three precious metals used in emission control parts are most often Platinum (Pt), Palladium (Pd), and Rhodium (Rh). These precious metals are known as Platinum Group Metals (PGM). More than 80% of global PGM used in emission control parts is mined OUTSIDE of North America, primarily in South Africa and Russia. Material that is recycled from heavy-duty applications through Red Fox is processed and sold primarily to domestic suppliers of PGM, keeping the material in America and reducing the reliance on foreign suppliers.

6. Compliance and Hazardous Waste Risk – It’s important to remember that when it comes to hazardous waste risk, compliance is 100% the responsibility of your company. This includes understanding complex local regulations and determining the potential contaminants in your waste. Different states and municipalities have varying thresholds that trigger a classification of waste as hazardous. Although the risk is low for emissions control parts, an experienced recycling company dedicated to processing these parts should be able to guide you through the process of determining the classification of your used DPFs, DOCs, and TWCs. Red Fox Resources has conducted multiple independent laboratory tests on used emission control parts and can help companies make this determination based on our years of experience. This advice includes guiding you through the cost/benefit analysis of having your waste emission control parts adequately assessed and tested.

How do I get started with Emission Control Parts Recycling?

If you are interested in recycling scrap emission control parts (DPFs, DOCs or Catalysts), please contact Red Fox Resources at or call 844-733-3695.

Other Resources

Useful Definitions

Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) – Diesel particulate filters, or DPFs, are exhaust aftertreatment devices that traps particulate matter such as soot and ash. A DPF typically uses a substrate made of a ceramic material that is formed into a honeycomb structure. Engine manufacturers use DPFs to trap particulate matter in order to meet the EPA emission standards. Most DPFs contain some combination of PGM (platinum group metals) to help facilitate the emission control or regeneration process.

Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC) – Diesel Oxidation Catalysts, or DOC, are exhaust aftertreatment devices that breaks down the pollutants in the exhaust stream by using a chemical process aimed at turning the pollutants into less harmful components from diesel fueled vehicles and equipment. DOCs contain some combination of PGM (platinum group metals) to help facilitate the oxidation or chemical process.

Three-Way Catalyst (TWC) – Three-way catalysts are designed to perform multiple oxidation reactions and reduction reactions simultaneously to convert air pollutants that are present in the exhaust to harmless gases. Most TWCs contain some combination of PGM (platinum group metals) to help facilitate oxidation process on natural gas fueled engines.

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