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Designing for Plastic Recyclability

Injection moulding companies must endeavour to make designing for recyclability and sustainability a core part of their business to grow and secure its position within the plastic industry. When considering recyclability and sustainability of a plastic product it is sensible to begin at the point of design, looking into products life cycles impacts and then minimising the largest environment impact.


Injection moulding design phase


Whilst designing your injection moulding part, the environmental impact should be reviewed. This analysis should include recyclability and sustainability as part of the design and manufacture process


There are multiple method that can be utilised to design injection moulding parts for recyclability, and the right methods will depend on the companies aims and objectives. E.g. if the product requires 100% recyclable packaging, then designers would need to look at using mono materials that can be easily separated at the point of disposal to then be easily recycled.


Considerations for plastic recyclability


  • Consider the recyclability of the injection moulding materials used, can they easily be recycled by most local authorities.


  • Reduce the number of materials used and if possible, use just one material. When using multiple materials, label correctly to enable easy recycling.


  • Review how the materials are fixed together, avoid using metal inserts or self-taping screws and aim to use snap clips where feasible. This will reduce the amount of time it takes to dismantle the product and they could also be made from the same material. If possible also try to avoid using polyester and polyurethane based adhesives, to make separation of the parts easier for recycling purposes.


Almost all plastics can be recycled, however the degree to which they are recycled depends upon technical, economic and logistic factors. Injection moulding manufactures should aim to design plastic products that can be recycled at their ‘end-of-life’, preferably back into a product that can then be recycled again and again.


Contact our team of injection moulding specialists today to discuss your requirements. 


Added: 29 Oct 2019 08:51

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