Shrink Wrap or Stretch Wrap?

Stretch wrap and shrink wrap are often confused for one another. Though, there is a significant difference between the two. Stretch wrap is highly stretchable plastic made from linear low density polyethylene (LLPDE). The elastic recovery of stretch wrap allows it to be tightly wrapped around loads, offering superior load containment. Shrink wrap is material made from polymer plastic film, commonly polyolefin, and contains a high percentage of low density polyethylene (LDPE), the same type of resin that is used to make bread bags. Shrink pallet wrap is typically applied to a load and then heated to shrink over whatever it is covering. Which one should you choose for your business? Toronto Stretch Wrap can help you decide.

Differences 

Unlike the elastic recovery of stretch wrap which allows items to remain tightly held, shrink packaging wrap is often applied loosely to products and shrinks over time due to heat exposure. This is because of the polymer plastic film base that it contains. LDPE, resin gives it the ability to shrink. Because it can only shrink so far, each product must be matched with a specific size and configuration of film. There are two types of shrink packaging wrap: one directional and two directional. Shrink film wrap molecules are intertwined in a random configuration. Changing this configuration will determine the direction of the final shrink product. As a film resin, LDPE does not have good puncture or tear resistance and offers low holding force. In order to adequately protect loads, shrink films generally have to be several times thicker than stretch films.

More Stretch in Stretch Wrap

Stretch wrap, in contrast, can stretch from 25 to 300 percent and can be applied by hand or machine. Hand films have less stretch than machine films and can stretch from 25 to 100 percent whereas machine films can stretch from 150 to 300 percent. Machine film can also apply higher levels of tension to loads as needed. Both shrink and stretch wrap protect products from the elements such as dust, moisture, and other environmental contaminants.

Shrink Wrap Less Cost Effective

When it comes to wrapping loads, using stretch wrap is less expensive, less time consuming, and more economical than using shrink wrap. Unlike shrink packaging wrap, where each product must be matched with a size and configuration, stretch film can be directly applied to different products with many load configurations. If you are looking for a stable, effective way to store your products, stretch wrap is the better choice for the flexibility, ease of use, reliability, and security it can offer your products. Order stretch wrap for your business today.

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