What is vinyl? Raw material, Additives
Crude oil, natural gas and salt are the raw materials used in the production of poly vinyl chloride (PVC) resin. Westech’s vinyl compound is formulated from these premium grade raw materials and additives, including UV inhibitors, impact modifiers, stabilizers and toners. Westech’s formula is built upon Westlake’s years of technical leadership, which has supported our superior technical formulation capabilities.
How is PVC manufactured ?
The PVC manufacturing process: Ethylene and chlorine, nature-derived materials, are the basic chemicals utilized in manufacturing PVC. Ethylene is made from crude oil and natural gas; chlorine is made from salt. These gasses are chemically reacted to form ethylene dichloride (EDC). The EDC is heated (or cracked) to produce two gasses: hydrogen chloride (HCl) and vinyl chloride monomer (VCM). Vinyl chloride monomer is the basic building block used to manufacture poly vinyl chloride. The term poly means many. [This polymer is formed when] simple molecules, called monomers, are chained together to form a more complex molecule or polymer. Polymerization is the chemical reaction used to convert VCM into PVC resin. The PVC resin is blended with additives (such as stabilizers, pigments, processing aids, UV inhibitors and plasticizers) to produce powder- and pellet-form compounds—from rigid PVC pipe (having no plasticizers) to very flexible products (including upholstery and wall coverings). [PVC and Fire, Vinyl Council of Canada.]
Does Westech vinyl chalk?
Chalking is the deterioration of the vinyl surface, thereby exposing the TiO2 particles to the surface. The white powder chalking that can be wiped from the surface of most vinyl fences is TiO2 particles mixed with deteriorating vinyl (PVC). Westech’s use of durable-grade, non-chalking TiO2 in its vinyl formulation results in very minimal chalking. All vinyl fencing will chalk sooner or later, but with the superior protection capabilities of our TiO2, it is kept to a minimum. Westech’s vinyl is formulated for exceptional beauty over a full lifetime.
Can I paint my Westech vinyl?
Westech’s vinyl products are engineered to retain their beauty and good looks throughout their lifetime. Westech does not recommend painting vinyl (PVC). There are paints available for vinyl, should you wish to change the color of your Westech fence, but painting or otherwise treating our vinyl products will void the limited lifetime warranty.
Will Westech vinyl mildew?
Mildew feeds off organic materials. Vinyl (PVC) is non-organic and therefore does not support mildew. When mildew grows on vinyl, it actually feeds off the organic materials (e.g., dirt) that have become embedded in or stuck to the vinyl. Westech fence profiles have a high-gloss, smooth, non-porous surface, making it very difficult for organic material to attach and therefore does not promote the growth of mildew. The use of non-chalking TiO2 (titanium dioxide) further prevents most mildew. Vinyl fencing that contains chalking TiO2 deteriorates at a much faster rate when compared to non-chalking TiO2. It creates a rougher surface where dirt and mildew could attach more easily. Only under consistently damp conditions will the possibility of mildew occur. A mild solution of bleach and water will easily remove mildew.
PVC or uPVC
Poly vinyl chloride refers to the resin used to produce vinyl, or can refer to the actual finished vinyl product after additives are included. PVC is also used interchangeably with the word vinyl. uPVC is the term used in many countries to refer to ultraviolet (UV)-protected PVC. All PVC, therefore, used to produce exterior vinyl products by reputable manufacturers is also uPVC.
According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, resin is “any of a large class of synthetic products that have some of the physical properties of natural resins but are different chemically and are used chiefly in plastics.” There are several grades of PVC resin, from high-quality, siding-grade resin to a lower-quality, pipe-grade resin. The poly vinyl chloride resin used in the production of Westech’s vinyl products is formulated to meet the industry’s highest standards
Also known as titanium dioxide, it is the most commonly used compound used to produce UV protection. TiO2 is the white pigment that reacts with water and oxygen. Water or moisture in the air is necessary for this product to be effective. There are at least two grades of TiO2: uncoated (or chalking) grade and coated (or durable, non-chalking) grade. The non-chalking—and more expensive—grade chalks at a much slower rate, providing a more lustrous finish over the life of the product it protects. Titanium dioxide is not noxious. In fact, it is used as a preservative and is also used to color baked goods, such as the popular white-powdered donuts!