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The Importance of Plastics Manufacturing to the Construction Industry

The building and construction industry is the nation’s second largest consumer of plastics. For instance, within the structure of a building, plastics contribute to insulation, door and window installation, wiring, piping and roofing. Inside the home, plastics provide wallpapering, flooring, awnings, laminated kitchen surfaces, piping, valves and fittings, and bathroom furniture. Indeed, plastics have built a reputation for durability, aesthetics, easy handling and high performance.

Moreover, the spike in multi-family living among today’s singles, couples without children and small families, particularly in Southern California and other major cities, has created new and additional uses of plastics in residential construction. While the space in multi-family housing and apartment living may be smaller, individuals are still looking for great design aesthetics to work within the limited square footage. Plastics provide design flexibility at reduced costs – from the functionality of built-in shelving to the luxury of cultured marble surfaces, plastics can play a part in creating the materials.

Plastic material in building additions as well as new construction also continues to add speed, save energy and reduce costs. For example, plastic in bathroom fixtures such as tubs, showers and sinks can be constructed in one piece and then hoisted into place and attached to the building frame, producing significant savings in construction and installation costs. Plastic is also safer to handle, as it’s typically much lighter than metals. The lightness of plastic makes it easier to carry and lift into place; if a part drops suddenly, the chances of a crushing injury are greatly reduced.

Architects and engineers also rely on plastics to help maximize energy efficiency, durability and performance – from the construction of new homes to the retrofit and renovation of commercial buildings, and from hospitals to schools. Plastic insulation products, in fact, save over 200 times more energy over their lifetime than that which is used for their production and are roughly 16% more energy-efficient than alternative insulation materials. In addition, the insulating effects of some plastics can also decrease sound pollution levels.

Plastics have changed our lives like no other material and their future continues to be bright in helping to boost the construction industry. This was recently underscored by a report released last month at the 2016 International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas. The report issued by plastics industry association, SPI, analyzed the principal factors impacting the plastics industry’s key end markets. “From floors to roofs, inside and outside of walls, plastics are a go-to product on construction sites around the world,” said William R. Carteaux, SPI President and CEO. “Innovation in the plastics industry to improve and diversify products is matched by the building and construction sector’s pace to find, and use, new solutions to address fundamental issues like structural integrity, energy savings, recycling, and cost savings.”

At Precision Manufacturing Insurance Services (PMIS), we are proud to be a supporter of this vibrant and dynamic industry and its continued growth by providing insurance for plastics manufacturers. As specialists in manufacturing insurance, our program is designed to support the industry’s innovation and expansion by providing products that respond to the complex set of exposures and emerging risks unique to plastics manufacturers. From Commercial General Liability to Property insurance to Product Liability and Product Recall, Patent Infringement, Professional Liability, Foreign Liability, and Excess Liability to Workers’ Compensation, among other coverages, our goal is to protect your assets, employees and profits as you embark on applying the next wave of plastics ingenuity. To learn more about our specialized insurance for plastics manufacturers, contact us at 855.910.5788.

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