15 Things You Need to Know About Working with HDPE Sheets.
The most used plastic sheeting internationally, High-density polyethylene (HDPE sheets) is a pretty remarkable resource. It’s used to make almost anything from walls/construction, toys, and is even FDA approved to be used in the food industry for cutting boards, etc.
If you’re starting a project and considering using HDPE as one of your materials, you’re probably wondering what you can and cannot do with HDPE. The are many uses you could optimize to get the best use out of your HDPE and ensure a successful project. Before starting, here are 15 things you need to know about working with HDPE.
Fastening & cutting
- HDPE sheets, such as 4×8 HDPE sheets, need to be fastened with a screw, plastic rivet, or nail. HDPE is strong, but luckily it’s nothing a good power drill and a steady hand can’t overcome.
- HDPE sheets can be cut or drilled the same way you would wood.
- HDPE sheets cannot be glued to itself or other materials as there are expansion and contraction of the material as it adjusts to temperature and its environment. If you use glue on HDPE sheets, it will break away from the plastic and not stick.
Can you paint HDPE sheets?
- For the same reason listed above, you cannot paint HDPE either, however, it does come in many colors and can be custom designed.
- In fact, most HDPE manufacturers will color match your sheets to any desired color as well.
HDPE sheet attributes
- HDPE is also very slick and slippery so avoid walking on the material and do not use it as a traffic surface unless you’ve used the appropriate safety measures.
- You can use HDPE for many quirky uses so get creative. You can even write your ideas and project plans on your HDPE sheets like a dry erase board.
- Extreme temperatures will not make the plastic of HDPE crack or break, which is why it is often used to make pipes and other outdoor materials that need to stand against the harsh cold winters in some areas.
- HDPE is famous for being very rigid, but it’s not brittle. It won’t break when bent with two hands or the average tool – even if the Hulk were to give it a try.
- If we’re making HDPE sound too rigid for your project in mind, the thinner sizes are flexible and can be worked into whichever shape or size you require.
Food use & sustainability
- HDPE sheets are FDA approved for food use areas and processing, which means it’s an excellent option instead of many BPA products or metals.
- HDPE comes in solid sheets of material. It’s 100% high-density polyethylene without any fillers.
- Thanks to the growing sustainability movement among most industries, the market for HDPE sheets continues to grow due to it being 100% recycled, thus doing our part to “complete the loop” with fewer materials needed.
- There is no set use for HDPE sheets. You can use it for bird boxes to concrete forms to skateboard ramps to hog pens; It is a very universal product.
- If you’re curious about where to buy HDPE sheets, be sure to do your research and find a supplier who is notable in their industry and can provide you with the exact material for your project requirements.
Sandhill Plastics, Inc. HDPE sheets for 30 years.
Interested in learning more about getting your specifics down for your next project using HDPE sheets?
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