There are 7 different types of plastic

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Click the Icons to find out more...

Source:Mould and Die World Magazine

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PET

Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET or PETE or Polyester)

Usage

PET or PETE is commonly found in soft bottles, such as water bottles and soft drink containers as well as polyester clothing.

​Recyclability

PET plastics are recycled into carpet, furniture, and fibre for clothes

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

Not at the moment, but we are investigating possible options for future

​Health Concerns

"Studies have found levels of antimony (a toxic chemical) leaching from water bottles that have been placed in heat for a prolonged time. Although PETE does not contain BPA or phthalates, it’s always best to make sure that your water bottles are not temperature abused. PETE plastic should not be reused because cleaning detergents and high temperatures can cause chemicals to leach out of the plastic" - Boomerang Alliance

 
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HDPE

High-Density Polyethylene

Usage

Because of its internal structure, HDPE is much stronger than PET, and can be reused safely. It can also be used for items that will be stored or used outdoors, because it does well in both high and freezing temperatures.It is commonly used for detergent bottles.

​Recyclability

Recycled HDPE is made into pens, plastic lumber, plastic fencing, picnic tables and bottles.

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

Yes. We produce plastic lumber and recycled coasters from HDPE.

​Health Concerns

None

 

Source:Green & Growing

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PVC

Polyvinyl Chloride

Usage

PVC is most well known for its use in pipes, but it can also be found in toys, chemical bottles and flooring.

Recyclability

"PVC is seldom recycled. 

Specialized programs recycle PVC into flooring, panelling and roadside gutters to name a few." - General Kinematics

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

No

​Health Concerns

"PVC plastics contain harmful chemicals linked to a variety of ailments, including bone and liver diseases and developmental issues in children and infants. Keep PVC items away from foods and drinks." - General Kinematics

 
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LDPE

Low-Density Polyethylene

Usage

Polyethylenes are the most used family of plastics in the world. This type of plastic has the simplest plastic polymer chemical structure, making it very easy and very cheap to process. LDPE polymers have significant chain branching including long side chains making it less dense and less crystalline (structurally ordered) and thus a generally thinner more flexible form of polyethylene.

LDPE is mostly used for bags. - Waste4Change

Recyclability

More recycling programs are beginning to accept LDPE plastics, but it’s still quite difficult to recycle. Recycled LDPE is made into such items as garbage cans, paneling, furniture, flooring and bubble wrap. - General Kinematics

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

No

​Health Concerns

None

 
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PP

Polypropylene

Usage

Stiffer and more resistant to heat, PP is widely used for hot food containers. Its strength quality is somewhere between LDPE and HDPE. Besides in thermal vests, and car parts, PP is also included in the disposable diaper and sanitary pad liners.

Waste4Change

​Recyclability

While it can be recycled, it’s thrown away much more often. When recycled, it’s turned into heavy-duty items like pallets, ice scrapers, rakes and battery cables. Many recycling programs accept PP. - General Kinematics

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

Yes. We can melt and mould PP and are investigating what to create as the final product.

​Health Concerns

None

 
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PS

Polystyrene

Usage

Polystyrene is the Styrofoam commonly used in take away food packaging and for padding around precious goods.

Styrofoam breaks into little pieces easily and can be found all through the other types of litter that wash up onto beaches.

​Recyclability

It’s unsafe because Styrofoam is notorious both for leaching harmful chemicals, especially when heated, and for poor recyclability. Like PP, it’s usually thrown away, although some recycling programs may accept it. PS is recycled into various items including insulation, school supplies and license plate framing. - General Kinematics

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

No.

​Health Concerns

According to the Foundation for Achievements in Science and Education fact sheet, long term exposure to small quantities of styrene can cause neurotoxic (fatigue, nervousness, difficulty sleeping), hematological (low platelet and haemoglobin values), cytogenetic (chromosomal and lymphatic abnormalities), and carcinogenic effects. Styrene is classified as a possible human carcinogen by the US EPA and by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. - Boomerang Alliance

 
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Other

Usage

Number 7 is for all plastics other than those identified by number 1-6 and also plastics that may be layered or mixed with other types of plastics, such as bioplastics. Polycarbonate (PC) is the most common plastic in this category - Waste4Change

Recyclability

These types of plastics are also extremely hard to recycle as they don’t break down easily. When recycling plants do accept it, Plastic #7 is primarily recycled into plastic lumber and specialized products. - General Kinematics

However, PLA, which is also categorised as 7 can be composted.

Bioplastics are not always recyclable and can in fact be even harder to recycle than other more common types of plastic.

Can Eco Crab Recycle it?

No. We can collect PLA and give it to Hidden Garden to compost.

​Health Concerns

Polycarbonate is derived from BPA. Read more about the harm of BPA here.

BPA has been found to be an endocrine disruptor and should be avoided at all costs.

 

Each one requires its own custom recycling technique

This is just one of the reasons plastic recycling is a complex problem.

Find out what types of plastic we can recycle and the techniques we use