Thursday, February 14, 2008

Many products are made of, or contain PVC

Here you can find out what everyday products contain PVC, and see a list of items to avoid:

Building materials

PVC siding - This is widely used in the US as a replacement for timber cladding. In the rest of the world it is far less common. Alternatives such as timber or strand board are widely available.

Insulation - The use of PVC profiles in cavity closure is increasing. Alternative products made with polyethylene are available.

Roofing Membranes - Roofing film made of soft PVC is used on the insides of roofs as shielding and flashing against water. Phthalates from soft PVC can be emitted to air and to water. Several alternative plastics exist.

Pipes - Rainwater guttering and drainpipes, water supply pipes, sewerage and drainage pipes, protective pipes for cables.

Approximately 90 percent of PVC pipes produced are waste pipes, protective pipes for electricity and telecommunications cable and underground drainage pipes. The rest are found in buildings as waste pipes or as mains pipes.

Pipes are made from rigid PVC (or unplasticised PVC - uPVC). Lead or tin stabilisers are often used in pipes, and red-brown pipes contain lead pigments. PVC-Free Pipes and Ducts are available.

Electricity cables, telephone and data cables - PVC coating is commonly used in cables and lines for the transfer of electricity and information. PVC in cables is one of the most hazardous uses of PVC for the environment and for human health. Fires involving PVC cables result in releases of hydrochloric acid and dioxin. Flexible PVC that contains plasticisers is used for PVC cables. Alternatives - PVC free electrical cables and wiring

Doors, windows and conservatory frames - made from unplasticised PVC (u-PVC) are heavily promoted by industry as replacement windows and doors. Sustainable timber is a suitable alternative. Alternatives - sustainable timber windows.

Click here to read more of the article and find out which home products contain PVC.


Timber Windows Glasgow said...

Yes the plastic windows are taking over, its a pity because timber windows add such beauty, and now with sustainably managed forests it really does make sense.

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