Evolving Needs for Plastic Tubing Require Plastics that Meet Industry-Demands

Evolving Needs for Plastic Tubing Require Plastics that Meet Industry-Demands

The uses and materials for tubing have evolved throughout the years, being constructed and manufactured from materials including iron and steel, clay, rubber and plastics. Plastic tubing, which touts many benefits like flexibility, strength, and durability and doesn’t cause latex sensitivities, has infiltrated every known industry including medical and surgical, dental and laboratory supply.

Manufacturing High-Quality Plastic Tubing for Decades

Kent Elastomer got our start in 1960 with natural rubber latex tubing and then began offering plastic tubing in the form of Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE) in the 1980s, after we bought our first extrusion line. During this time was the onslaught of the AIDS crisis, and as personal protective equipment such as latex gloves grew in popularity natural latex products became targeted by claims of latex sensitivity. TPEs helped us compete in that market, and we have continued to expand our product line and materials offering since to meets the demands of the industries we serve.

Continued Market Growth

In 2016, the global market for plastic pipe/tubing reached nearly $56.8 billion and is projected to reach nearly $72.3 billion by 2021, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.1%. With more industries discovering their need for flexible, lower cost material that can be made into a variety of sizes including with the features they need, more plastic tubing products will continue to compete in the market and KEP will continue to find ways to innovate.

Versatile Options

Plastic tubing is a popular alternative to rubber which we offer in many different materials including Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE), Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU), Synthetic Polyisoprene and Thermoplastic Vulcanizate (TPV). Each of these materials offers the flexible and durability of rubber latex and is also manufactured with various levels of resistance to environmental and chemical factors. Plastic tubing can be manufactured in many different colors, sizes, and shapes, including non-circular options like flat or rectangular, depending on end-use.

Small Diameter & Thin Sizing Available

Small diameter and thin wall products are becoming more and more desirable. The high cost due to an inability to produce a consistent product has left many companies out of the market. We are capable of running these sizes while maintaining a cost-effective price point unlike many specialty extrusion facilities.

Low Tolerances

As medical devices become more and more critical, the tubing used on those devices have been required to change along with them. In the past, it was not uncommon for tubing used in the medical field to have tolerances of +/- .020” or even larger. Currently at KEP we are capable of making products with tolerances of +/- .005” as our standard for many of the sizes we offer. We are capable of running tight tolerances of +/- .003” on ID sizes as small as .040” and wall sizes in the teens and twenties.

Durable Plastic Tubing

We offer plastic tubing made from strong resins that are able to withstand extremely cold and hot environments, resist chemical and other corrosive environments and also options that are resistant to fire and flame. Mimicking the flexibility and strength of rubber but without concern for latex allergies and better stability, Thermoplastic Elastomer Tubing is a popular choice for durability and versatility. Polyvinyl Chloride is another ideal plastic tubing material that ­­offers stability and strength, plus resistance to flames, tears, corrosion, weather, chemicals, impact and electricity.

Meets Industry-Specific Demands

Many industries, like the medical and surgical industries, require that industry-standard-approved guidelines are followed in the production of their plastic tubing. This is why we work with our clients to adhere to strict industry standards, as well as (Food and Drug Administration) regulations, the USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) regulations and more for our plastic tubing.

Plastic Tubing for Any Type – and Size – of Project

We can help you determine which is the material for your plastic tubing need, and can manufacture an array of wall sizes, colors and an assortment of sizes. No matter the type of size of plastic tubing project you need, our experts at Kent Elastomer can prototype and manufacturer the right plastic for your project.

 

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