Salvage & Reuse of Construction Materials

Does your project include demolition? Will buildings be torn down or walls taken out? The first thing to determine is whether or not this project is a good one for salvage, also known as soft demo. Either you or a contracted salvage company can selectively remove materials such as doors, windows, architectural structures, cabinetry, sinks, and tubs before a full demolition. Salvaged items can be sold or donated. You can have an entire structure deconstructed or you can select certain materials.

Examples of reusable building materials:

Columns, mantles & moulding
Steel beams & studs
Electrical equipment
Light fixtures
Faucets, toilets & bathtubs

Plumbing fittings
Interior doors & windows

collection of reclaimed sinks

Salvaged sinks for sale at
Whole House Building Supply
in East Palo Alto.

salvaged materials used in Jasper Ridge Field Station project

Salvaged brick and redwood siding were used extensively in the new Jasper Ridge Field Station.

If possible, allow time for soft demo to be scheduled. Often an entire house can be salvaged; everything, including landscaping and fixtures, will be dismantled, dug up, deconstructed and sold. Although deconstruction is not cheap, it allows for tremendous natural resource savings. An additional benefit is that deconstruction is generally tax deductible.

To find a soft demo contractor, check the Recycling database under Construction: Soft Demo. To find a salvage yard where you can drop the salvaged material off, search the Recycling Database under Construction: Salvage Yards.

Can't find what you are looking for?
Call the Office of Sustainability Hotline at 1-888-442-2666 and get personal help.