For many years in the not-so-distant past, plastic injection molding companies and professionals would not have even considered the use of recycled plastic scrap or other recycled plastic within the manufacturing processes. Recycled plastic was not considered to be of a high enough quality level, and there were concerns about whether it was a consistent enough material to produce the same kind of high-quality products as processes using new plastic.
At EnviroTech Custom Injection Molders, we’re here to tell you that this is simply no longer the case. Our custom plastic injection molding products are made with several sustainability themes in mind, one of which is the use of recycled plastic in situations where this is applicable. This two-part blog will go over how advances in technology have allowed our industry to expand to recycled metals without losing quality, plus some of the common recycled plastic types you’ll find and the sorts of products they’re commonly used for.
Over a period of years, several areas of research and development within the waste, recycling and plastics sectors have revealed the viability of recycled plastic within plastic injection molding. This process can be done without any loss in quality whatsoever, whether you’re utilizing a flexible part or one that requires high strength.
In addition, using recycled parts allows you a wide selection range in terms of colors and plastic types – within the range of the recycled materials, of course. If your base material and original feedstock were all one color, for instance, this will be the color you’re working with.
But plastic injection can be done quickly with recycled products, making it excellent for large-sale projects or fast prototyping that’s needed. For this reason, it’s often used for a closed material process, one where parts are continuously recycled and reused as they age.
Using recycled plastic is a fantastic way to benefit the environment, part of why we try to go this route whenever possible. Not only does this reduce the reliance on public landfills and other areas for plastic waste, it also reduces the number of raw plastic materials required for a given production project – in turn limiting ground pollution, greenhouse gasses and other environmental downsides of new plastic production. OEM material expense reduction often plays a big role in the viability of recycled plastic injection centers, in fact.
Some wonder if there are limitations on the kinds of parts that can be produced using recycled plastic materials, and generally speaking the answer is no. Modern processes allow for all the same kinds of products to be made, from bottle caps and other smaller items up to automotive parts, electrochemical components and industrial valves alike.
For more on the use of recycled plastic scrap and other products in plastic injection molding, or to learn about any of our custom injection molding services, speak to the staff at EnviroTech Custom Injection Molders today.