ABS Plastic Sheets

Outdoor Applications of ABS Plastic Sheets

Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) is a thermoplastic made up of three different monomers: acrylonitrile, butadiene, and styrene. ABS is known for its high-impact resistance, durability, and strength.

One of the main factors to consider when selecting material for outdoor applications is weather resistance and the material’s ability to stand up well to storms, winds, sunlight, high and low temperatures, and extreme weather conditions. ABS boasts all of these qualities. It has exceptional weather resistance and can maintain its structural integrity and physical properties even in the harshest temperature.

Understanding the Weather Resistance of ABS Plastic Sheets

ABS plastic sheets can withstand prolonged exposure to sunlight without significant degradation. Damage by UV radiation can cause materials to fade, discolour, or become brittle over time. ABS has high UV protection, is effectively resistant to high and low temperatures, and has a long service life. Some argue that ABS does not have great UV resistance, but that is false; only ABS sheets with low UV-rated ABS plastic can crack or degrade over time. If a UV stabilizer is added to the resin before the sheet is extruded, it can resist damage from UV.

Outdoor Structural Applications of ABS Plastic Sheets

ABS plastic sheets are commonly used in various outdoor structural applications due to their durability, weather resistance, and impact resistance. Here are a few examples.

Building and Construction Applications

ABS is a popular choice for building and constructing pipes and fittings used in residential and commercial settings, not just because it is cheaper than other materials. Plumbers prefer ABS pipes because of their rust resistance. Who wants a pipe that will rust, cause leaks, and break over time?

Another problem pipes face, especially in Canada, is the cold weather. In extreme cold, pipes, especially the ones made of copper, can crack. ABS pipes can withstand cold temperatures; they do not leak, rust or peel because they can withstand temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit without any risk of fracture as long as the low temperatures are not sustained for multiple days.

ABS plastic is more durable than other materials. ABS has a lifespan of 50 years. ABS plastics are also lightweight, which makes them easier to handle and install, which means less time spent during installation. Did you know that ABS pipes are also shock resistant? They can withstand minor earthquakes without breaking.

Garden and Landscaping Structures

ABS plastic sheets are used in creating garden and landscaping structures such as planters, pergolas, gazebos, etc. They are moisture-resistant and won’t degrade when exposed to water or soil, making them an ideal material for outdoor planters.

The lightweight nature of ABS plastic makes it easier to handle and install. Gardening tools such as shovels, rakes, hoes, and claws are also made from ABS because of their great resistance to elements and ability to retain their structural integrity.

Outdoor Functional Components of ABS Plastic Sheets

ABS is used in creating safety signs, symbolic signs, outdoor signs, directional signage, advertising displays etc., because of its excellent strength, light weight, flexibility, and high-temperature resistance.

Aside from its low production cost, ABS is a versatile material that makes it easily manipulated and molded to meet diverse design and application needs.

ABS is used for electrical enclosures, equipment housings, and automotive exterior components. ABS has good impact resistance, which is crucial for protecting electronic devices from impacts. It helps absorb shocks and prevents damage to the enclosed equipment. When ABS is used for automotive exteriors, it protects them from exposure to sunlight and UV radiation damage. Its lightweight design also helps in easy fabrication to achieve complex designs and meet aesthetic requirements for automotive exterior components.

ABS Sheet Performance in Challenging Weather Conditions

ABS performs well in cold temperatures. It can withstand temperatures as low as -20 °C (-4 °F) without impacting its properties.

ABS can also withstand temperatures up to 100°C. It has a heat deflection temperature ranging from 88°C to 89°C. The melting point of ABS is approximately 200°C, indicating the temperature at which it transitions from a solid to a liquid state. It has a glass transition temperature of roughly 105°C, demonstrating its ability to maintain structural integrity at elevated temperatures.

ABS is also highly resistant to aqueous, phosphorus, and hydrochloric acids, enhancing its durability and suitability for demanding environments.

Maintenance and Longevity of ABS Sheets

As durable and strong as ABS plastic sheets are, they still need proper maintenance to help prolong their longevity. Fortunately, maintaining ABS is quite simple. It can be cleaned with only mild soap and water. Avoid using chemicals like chlorides and ketones, as they can harm the surface and give the sheets a yellowish colour.

Use a soft cloth for cleaning to avoid leaving dents or scratches on the surface. For minor damage, such as cracks or fractures, repairing them with resin can help restore strength. A good resin can cure ABS sheets within 24 hours.

Advantages of ABS Plastic Sheets for Outdoor Use

Here are some advantages of ABS plastic sheets for outdoor use:

  • Lightweight and easy installation. ABS plastic sheets are lightweight, making them easy to transport and work with and a favourite among plumbers and builders alike.
  • Resistance to chemicals, oils, and solvents. ABS plastics have excellent chemical resistance to oils and a variety of chemicals, such as diluted organic acids, alkalis, hydrochloric acid, nitric acid, and sulphuric acid, at normal temperatures.
  • Impact resistance and durability. ABS plastic is a durable material with exceptional impact resistance and toughness. It is suitable for applications that demand sturdiness, strength, and stiffness.

Choose Canada Plastics & Belting Inc. for ABS Plastic Sheets

Selecting durable and weather-resistant materials like ABS is important for outdoor applications. Canada Plastics & Belting Inc. is your go-to supplier for high-quality ABS Plastics in Toronto. We have ABS sheets in a range of sizes and measurements, including 3 mm thicknesses to 6 mm. We also offer ABS in two finishes: smooth and hair cell texture on one side. The hair cell finish resembles the surface of an orange peel and adds texture to the smooth finish.

Contact us today to learn more about our ABS sheets or read our commonly asked questions about ABS plastic sheets.

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