What Should I Do With the Zinc and Steel Coins?

Zinc and steel pennies about to be re-rolled
When coin roll hunting, you are only going to want to keep those coins that are valuable for their metal content (in Canada, pennies before 1997, and nickels before 1982) or have numismatic value because of their rarity/age. It would be a good idea to check our posts on what Canadian coins to keep before you begin coin roll hunting. These can be found here, here, and here. In more recent years, Canadian coins have been stripped almost completely of their valuable metal. These new coins are now made mostly of zinc and steel as opposed to their more valuable copper, nickel, and silver counterparts.

Coin roll hunting involves separating these zinc and steel coins from the more valuable ones. So what should be done with these modern coins? These zinc and steel coins will not be kept and added to your hoard. Instead, they will be brought back to your bank (or any bank that you can get to accept them) and cashed in for future coin purchases. Before bringing these zinc and steel coins back, there are a few things you will need to do in order to make this return occur much more smoothly.

First, you need to re-roll these zinc and steel coins before bringing them back to the bank. Do not worry about purchasing rolls in order to do this. Just re-roll these coins in the rolls they came in. There should be plenty of extras to accomplish this. Second, once all of the zinc and steel coins are re-rolled you will want to bundle these rolls in groups of ten, and secure them using elastics. This may seem like a meaningless task that will cause more work in the long run, but trust us, this step is important. I cannot tell you how appreciative the bank tellers are when they see the extra work you put into re-rolling these coins. It is important to keep these individuals happy, since you will most likely deal with them quite frequently during your time coin roll hunting. I have yet to have a teller refuse to accept these coins with them re-rolled and bundled. Having them in groups of ten makes the return even easier, as they can be quickly counted and added up.

Coins bundled and ready to go back to the bank
Thirdly, when returning these zinc and steel coins back to the bank, make sure you drop them off at a different bank from the one you picked up your original order. You do not want to be picking up coins to coin roll hunt at a bank that you have been bringing groups of worthless coins to. Instead, disperse these coins at different banks, even different bank chains. If you have a friend or family member that uses a different bank, see if they can return them for you. This way you do not have to worry about coming back into contact with your already searched through rolls. 

Lastly, try not to bring too many re-rolled coins to your return bank all at once, as they may refuse to accept such a large amount. We will never bring more than $50 of pennies to the same bank for this very reason (you may be able to get away with it, just make sure you have followed our steps, and don’t be surprised if you are indeed turned away). Also note that we like to return these coins before our weekly pickup. This way we can use this money to pay for our next week’s purchase.

Returning these zinc and steel coins is just as important as the act of coin roll hunting and sorting through the coins themselves. Be sure to put in the extra time needed to re-roll and bundle these coins and follow the above steps so that your return can be as easy and effective as possible.

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