Posted | Categorised in Manufacturing & Processes.

Think plastic, and think damaging to the environment, but that’s not always the case and not all plastics are the same. Polyurethane is the eco-friendly plastic of choice, for a variety of reasons.

If you need custom components creating and you’re concerned about your impact on the planet, polyurethane could be the way to go.

It’s Hard-wearing

Polyurethane is one of the most hard-wearing substances you can use when building components, much more so than thermoplastics as it is both strong and flexible. It’s resistant to friction too, which helps any products last longer, as they don’t wear down in contact with other components.

As polyurethane is more hard-wearing, this means there’s less need to keep replacing components and products, which cuts down on the energy used in manufacture.

It also means less waste – of the plastics in the oceans, polyurethane only makes up around 2% compared to the 95% made up of thermoplastics.

By choosing polyurethane you’re getting a product that will last, saving you money, and that won’t end up on a landfill when it’s barely been out of production.

It’s Recyclable

Unlike some other plastics, polyurethane can be recycled when it’s served its purpose. It can be partially broken down into polymers, which can be reused to create new products, or it can be broken down completely by microorganisms so that it essential decomposes.

The best part is that nothing toxic is emitted in this process, since polyurethane contains no chemicals. So, if it is broken down, then no harmful materials are being released into the environment.

It’s More Energy-efficient To Produce

The actual process of creating polyurethane in comparison to other plastic manufacturing is more eco friendly due to the efforts made by responsible manufacturers.

By finding ways to reduce wastage by optimising the process and working with the latest casting systems, polyurethane can be manufactured at volume with minimal unnecessary impact on the environment.

That’s because the latest techniques and analytical information allow for moulds that don’t waste the product, and that can even be used to refurbish components, so that they don’t need to be completely built from scratch every time.

It’s Useful In Wider Eco Friendly Applications

Polyurethane has two main attributes that make it more eco friendly than other plastics.

The first is that it has excellent insulation properties, making it perfect for the building and construction industry and in the manufacturing of home appliances.

It can be used in large-scale buildings, or simply in appliances such as a refrigerator, as an effective insulator that can trap air, reducing the need to spend money and resources on heating or cooling offices or electricals.

This again cuts down on the detriment to the planet when these heating or cooling sources would normally be manufactured.

The second attribute is how lightweight the material is, making it an ideal material for the automotive industry. It’s perfect for use in a number of heavier vehicles to bring down the total weight, which means less fuel is needed for the vehicle.

Less fuel means a more eco friendly vehicle, with fewer emissions and less impact on the mining for that fuel.

If you would like to know more about Polyurethane and how it can be used, please contact us today.