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Polycarbonate Benefits: Stronger Than Glass and Half the Weight

By June 11, 2020 No Comments
safety glass in a train

Understanding polycarbonate’s benefits is essential when you need to decide between heavy-duty polycarbonate plastic and traditional glass. Opting for polycarbonate plastic over glass is a foolproof way to cater to your bottom line. Among polycarbonate’s advantages and disadvantages is its cost-effectiveness. Everything about the material, from its durability to its weight, can save money for you. Imagine not having to spend a fortune on replacement parts. Think about not breaking your budget on shipping costs. Read on as Polymershapes breaks down the primary advantages of polycarbonate plastic.

Supreme Durability

One of the biggest benefits of polycarbonate is its strength when compared to traditional glass. It’s over 200 times more impact-resistant than glass and it’s significantly stronger, which explains why it has a reputation of being indestructible.

Although polycarbonate isn’t quite indestructible, it’s close. It can withstand enormous amounts of force and pressure, and when it does break, it’s far less likely to shatter and expel sharp shards. That’s why regular glass is dangerous, and why polycarbonate is the preferred material for security windows, glass in vehicles, and outdoor features.

Total Transparency

polycarbonate windshield in a golf cart

In discussing the advantages and disadvantages of polycarbonate, it’s important to consider the transparency of polycarbonate. It offers more light transmission than glass, which means that you can not only see through it but also that you can see through it more clearly. Polycarbonate is clearer and more transparent, even when the sheets are thick. On the other hand, thicker panes of glass are not as clear.

Lighter than Air

Not really, but polycarbonate is lighter than glass. That is, in fact, one of the prime polycarbonate benefits, which convinces people to opt for polycarbonate over anything else. It’s half the weight of glass, which makes it a better choice for vehicle windows, safety glass, and many other applications. Its lightweight qualities also result in cost savings to you, as polycarbonate is less expensive to ship and easier to move than glass, plus it’s not as difficult to handle. Because it’s not fragile, you don’t have to be as careful with it, although it’s still critical to handle it with care.

Natural UV Protection

Polycarbonate’s benefits include its natural properties, one of which is a resistance to UV rays. That explains its popularity as a material for greenhouse windows, windshields, and safety glass. In some cases, sheets of polycarbonate will have an additional protective UV coating, thereby increasing its power to battle the rays of the sun.

Easy to Shape

Shaping plastic is an art form. Talking about the polycarbonate’s advantages and disadvantages must include a discussion about how easy it is to cut and form into other shapes. Polycarbonate is a breeze to manipulate via thermoforming, which is ideal if you need precise, sharp pieces. However, polycarbonate can also change its shape with the application of just a bit of heat. Talk to Polymershapes about the different methods we use to form and shape polycarbonate plastic.

A Toasty Element

a quaint country greenhouse

Polycarbonate has insulating properties, too. That’s one of the primary benefits of polycarbonate when you use it to replace glass windows in greenhouses or in all-season porches. Glass doesn’t insulate well at all unless you utilize several panes. In comparison, polycarbonate is a more economical choice due to the way it enhances the greenhouse effect.

All the Colors of Polycarbonate

a multicolored stained glass butterfly

Rounding out our discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of polycarbonate, let’s talk about the versatility of the material. In addition to its ability to be formed or laser cut into any shape, you can also get it in nearly any color. That has practical purposes, including simple applications such as using dark polycarbonate to create a sunlight-blocking effect. However, you can also create the same dazzling rainbow effect of stained glass, but with UV protection and additional durability.

Now that you know more about polycarbonate’s benefits, you can decide if it’s a better choice for your needs than glass. Polycarbonate is practically the only choice if you want a long-lasting part or piece, as well, especially since it has advantages over metal, too. Get in touch with Polymershapes to learn more about the possibilities of polycarbonate.

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