Contact / RFQ
hp commercial plastic products

How to Choose the Best Plastic for Outdoor Uses

Today, plastic has become a material of choice for manufacturers of outdoor applications. It is frequently used to make components in outdoor furniture, highway safety markers, metal wire coatings, and more. For manufacturers, it’s important to know how to choose the best plastic for outdoor uses as their material components

Inplex’s informational guide will help you choose the best plastic for outdoor use. Plastic components used to build outdoor applications should be durable and long-lasting. Keep reading to discover why top brands & manufacturers choose inplex to source their plastic materials for outdoor use.

According to Statista, The outdoor plastic furniture market size was valued at 8.4 billion U.S. dollars in 2018. It is forecasted to reach 9.64 billion U.S. dollars in 2023. The growth in this industry is related to the high demand for housing.

For example one of the many products creating a high demand for outdoor plastic components is outdoor furniture like pergolas and cabanas. Plastic components help make furniture more durable now than ever before. This is due to manufacturers increased knowledge of which plastic is best for outdoor use.

There are many benefits to using plastic for outdoor use. Unlike metal, plastic will not corrode, and unlike wood, it will not rot or absorb moisture. However, not all plastics are created equal, so it’s important to pick the right plastic for outdoor uses. Keep reading Inplex’s informative guide to help better understand how to choose the best plastic for the components in your outdoor application.

Why Should You Choose High-Quality Plastic for Outdoor Use?

Highway Safety Markers

If you or your company are building outdoor structures, or need high-performing plastic for outdoor components, then it’s crucial to use custom high-quality plastic materials sourced from inplex.

High-quality plastics are durable. They are lightweight, yet quite strong and will not warp easily. They are also versatile; they’re easy to shape, customize, and adjust during the manufacturing process to meet specific requirements, meaning they can be used for a wide variety of applications.

For almost any type of plastic component that you need for outdoor use, there is likely at least one type of plastic that will meet your needs. Using the appropriate plastic will help ensure your outdoor components or applications function reliably and last longer. Make sure to consider local weather conditions, and choose a type of plastic that can withstand them.

Top 3 Plastics for Outdoor Use & Manufactured Components

Inplex Custom Extruders discusses the 3 best plastics for outdoor use below. Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), high-density polyethylene (HDPE), and polycarbonate are manufacturers’ top picks for the best outdoor plastic materials. All of these plastic materials can be extruded into custom outdoor structure components by Inplex.

Each plastic has its own set of unique benefits. In fact, plastic materials offer all the advantages that glass, wood, and metal have. The difference is plastic materials for outdoor use have all these benefits and advantages combined in one extruded plastic material.

1. Why ABS Plastic for Outdoor Use?

ABS plastic, a thermoplastic polymer, emulsifies acrylonitrile, butadiene, and styrene. The plastic can withstand high as well as very low temperatures. When exposed to high temperatures, ABS material will not burn. Instead, it will melt and liquefy. It can endure multiple heating and cooling cycles without losing its structural integrity. This characteristic makes ABS plastic the preferred choice for machining processes such as fabrication.

In 2020, extrusion accounted for 28% of the total ABS market share. The growing demand for lightweight, fuel-efficient vehicles that make use of ABS parts is further propelling plastic’s popularity. The ABS market is projected to grow to $40.8 billion by 2026.

The ABS polymer is an ideal plastic for outdoor use, especially in colder regions. It offers several benefits:

  • It is structurally stable and durable.
  • It is cost-effective.
  • It exhibits strong resistance to corrosion, impact, and UV radiation.
  • It is non-toxic and non-carcinogenic.
  • It is available in an array of opaque, transparent, translucent, and stock color options.
  • It can be recycled to go back into the manufacturing process, making it an eco-friendly choice.

In addition to creating custom plastic components for outdoor use, Inplex can extrude ABS for various outdoor components and applications, including:

  • Plastic tubing extrusions just the way you want them — flexible, semi-rigid, or rigid
  • Water distribution system elements such as water pipes and waste pipes
  • Automotive parts such as bumpers, grills, dashboards, and fuel tank caps
  • Pavement markers, signposts, snow poles, and other traffic safety products
  • Oil and gas bushings, bearings, valve seals, and gland seals

Learn More About the Benefits of ABS Plastic

ABS plastic is one of the top plastic choices for many industrial, commercial and retail products. This is because of the long list of benefits the plastic material offers. Top brands choose ABS from Inplex for custom plastic components in outdoor products. ABS continues to be identified as one of the top plastics for outdoor use. This plastic material offers unique benefits for different industries and projects.

Below are articles that provide great insight into more of the appealing benefits of ABS plastic

  1. Why ABS Plastic is Best for Your Custom Plastic Project
  2. Why Industries are Switching to ABS Plastic Applications

2. HDPE plastic for components in outdoor products

HDPE Plastic

HDPE is a petroleum-based thermoplastic polymer. It is a versatile plastic known for its tensile strength. HDPE plastic maintains its structural integrity even when heated, melted, and cooled many times. Even if it cracks over time, HDPE plastic is safe as it will not have sharp or harmful edges.

Enriching HDPE plastic with a UV stabilization additive during extrusion can make it an ideal candidate for outdoor use. HDPE is a great plastic for outdoor use as it offers many advantages, including

  • It will not break easily under environmental stress.
  • It will not react to chemicals.
  • It is free from BPA, heavy metals, and allergens, making it a safer plastic option.
  • It can be recycled and is considered eco-friendly.

The sun-resistant plastic is used in various outdoor applications, including:

  • Playground equipment
  • Tubing materials and pipe systems
  • Outdoor signage
  • Marine products
  • Outdoor park furniture

3. Polycarbonate plastic is great for outdoor components

Polycarbonate is a highly pliable thermoplastic. Like ABS, polycarbonate plastic will not burn, but instead, turn into a liquid when subjected to high temperatures. It can be heated and cooled several times and is ideal for extrusion into tubes and profiles.

There are several reasons for using polycarbonate plastic for outdoor use and applications, including:

  • It is lightweight, yet tough and highly rigid even at high temperatures.
  • It is resistant to impact, UV rays, and heat.
  • Its thickness, strength, and degree of transparency can be adjusted to suit end-product requirements.
  • It is optically transparent and transmits light.
  • It can be custom-colored to exhibit an attractive gloss finish — similar to glass and metal.

If you want to build a solid outdoor structure requiring all-weather protection, polycarbonate plastic is an excellent material for outdoor use. It is used in a variety of applications, including:

  • Automotive and aerospace parts
  • Pool fences
  • Patio covers
  • Greenhouses
  • Fluorescent outdoor lighting
  • Skylights and roofing panels

Need High-Quality Plastic For Outdoor Components or Structures?

ABS plastic in use

Inplex Custom Extruders have a devotion to providing fully customizable options, with the use of top-rated materials to create the highest quality products, and excellent customer service.

If you or your organization are interested in high-quality plastic components for outdoor use then look to Inplex Custom Extruders. For over 50 years we have been providing some of the best custom plastic extrusion products on the market. Manufacturers choose Inplex for various reasons, for example, our vast manufacturing facilities and wide range of plastic materials enabled us to get the job done according to our client’s satisfaction.

Inplex has developed a reputation for providing high-quality extrusion plastic products, that are used to create safe and durable outdoor structures. This has allowed us to expand into many different markets and industries, and become the first choice to many top brands looking for plastic components for outdoor use.

Custom Plastic Components in Outdoor Products

Inplex is often chosen to create custom plastic components for pergolas and other outdoor product designs with custom component requirements. We can manufacture a variety of plastic components for outdoor use to your exact specifications. For more information on examples of past outdoor plastic components Inplex has made, and why top brands choose to work with Inplex to create outdoor products check out our recent informational blog.

This will provide more insight into why your organization should work with Inplex custom extruders to produce your desired outdoor plastic component.

Build Custom Durable Outdoor Applications With Inplex

Inplex can be your trusted custom extruder for outdoor plastic components. We will manufacture outdoor product components designed to meet your exact specifications. A handful of certifications and rigorous quality inspections will ensure top-quality outdoor plastic components every time.

Inplex has over five decades of rich experience delivering custom-designed plastic extrusion components for outdoor use. Whether you choose ABS, HDPE, or polycarbonate, Inplex can fulfill your order.

Plastic material for outdoor application must be chosen with care. If you need help identifying the most suitable plastic, speak to a specialist and submit a request for your next outdoor project today.

Back to Blog

Request a quote for your next custom extrusions order

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Additional Information
Plastic tubing profiles