All About Polyethylene

Polyethylene is a popular thermoplastic found in many consumer and industry products. Two popular variations of this thermoplastic are Low density polyethylene (LDPE) and High density polyethylene (HDPE)

LDPE is a flexible plastic which is also highly chemical resistant and offers good toughness. It’s an ideal thermoplastic for low heat environments when electrical and chemical properties are necessary. It’s melting point is around 105-115C (221-239F). LDPE is more commonly used in consumer products like plastic bags.

HDPE is harder than LDPE but has higher tensile and compressive strength. It has a melting point of 120-180C (248-356F). HDPE is common in high construction projects (like drain pipes).

Here are a few properties of PE:

  • Excellent chemical resistance
  • Low to no water absorption
  • Low gas and water vapour permeability
  • Becomes brittle when exposed to sunlight
  • Good electrical insulator

Polyethylene parts can be joined together using welding, fastening, or adhesives. Some adhesives and solvents can’t be used with PE due to its high resistance to solvents.

For more information about the Polyethylene rods and tubes we have available for your next project, contact our plastics team today.

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