How Recycled Plastics Are Used in Construction

Plastic is a versatile material that can be used for a wide variety of purposes. It can be made into new containers for food or water, pieces of furniture, and much more. Recycling this material helps to conserve natural resources like petroleum, and it also reduces the production of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide.

Despite its many benefits, it is important to note that not all types of plastic are suitable for recycling. Some can’t be recycled because they are not compatible with the current processing technology, while others may simply have a low recycling value. The most common types of plastic that can be recycled include HDPE, LDPE, PET, and PP. These six types make up 75% of all plastics used in the world, but there are also other less common plastics that can be recycled as well.

To determine which plastics can be recycled, recycling companies test the different features of these materials. One of the most important qualities to consider is the density of the plastic. For this test, the plastic particles are placed into a container of water. Those that sink are more dense, while those that float are lighter in weight. This is a great way to sort the different plastics so they can be processed properly.

Another important quality to consider is the color of the plastic. Some plastics can’t be recycled because they are not colored correctly. For example, clear plastics are the most valuable because they can be dyed, while black or strongly coloured plastics are less desirable since they will not turn out as clean and bright after being recycled. This is why it is so important to separate your plastic waste based on type and colour when possible.

After the plastic is sorted, it goes through a process called mechanical recycling. This process involves shredding the plastic into smaller pieces that can then be melted down and extruded into pellets that are then used to create various products. This process is good for most types of plastics, but it does not work for all of them because the quality of the recycled plastic degrades with each cycle.

Using recycled plastics in the construction industry is an excellent way to promote environmental sustainability and help to preserve the planet’s natural resources. It is estimated that using just a ton of recycled plastic can save the equivalent energy of 5.774 kWh, which is enough to power two average-sized homes for a year. It can also help to reduce oil consumption and the emission of harmful greenhouse gasses that are produced during the manufacturing process. These benefits, along with the fact that using recycled plastics can reduce production costs for companies, make it a smart choice to use these green materials in your next construction project.