Your guide to PVC

Plastic has become a critical part of our daily lives, from food packaging to medical devices. Our modern lives would not be possible without plastics. However, it is our responsibility to ensure that the plastic we use is recycled properly not only for the benefit of the environment, but to maximise their economic value.

An important plastic that we use in our everyday lives is polyvinyl chloride (PVC). This type of plastics is one of the most popular and oldest thermoplastic polymers in the world. Discovered in the 1800s, PVC has been commercially sold since the 1920s and is still being commercially sold to this day.

There are three different forms of PVC which include:

  • Liquid
  • Rigid
  • Flexible

However, the rigid and flexible forms of PVC are the most common as they are used across a wide range of industries.

Rigid PVC

Rigid PVC is most commonly used in irrigation and construction sectors. It is used in the production of:

  • Irrigation pipes
  • Conduits
  • Gutters
  • Pharmaceutical bottles
  • Fridge magnets

Flexible PVC

The flexible PVC, on the other hand, is more common in medical and clothing fields. This form of PVC is used to manufacture:

  • Drip bags
  • Electrical insulation
  • Vehicle dashboard skins
  • Gumboots safety gloves
  • Garden hoses and packaging films

PVC benefits

The most important benefit of PVC and the characteristic that makes it, so popular is its resistance to environmental degradation, including wear and tear, and chemical and alkaline substances. One of the other extremely attractive benefits of PVC is that it is cheap to produce and requires little energy to manufacture, making it an economically-beneficial plastic.

PVC is an extremely strong plastic; therefore, it can withstand pressure making it a common plastic in the construction industry. It is also heat and flame resistance and impermeable to liquids making it safe plastic for storage.

PVC is an extremely versatile, easily recyclable and readily available plastic. It is for this reason; there is no need to throw products manufactured using PVC away, rather recycle, reuse or upscale the product.

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