PET and HDPE plastics are very popular for manufacturing bottles and jars. However, understanding why to use each plastic type is important to many brands and a growing consumer base. Many new points have to considered including:
- Sustainability – use less energy and raw materials
- Recyclability – will the waste fit into the current circular economy?
- Container size – can we use concentrated liquids and make the packaging smaller?
- Storage – how long will HDPE or PET last with other contents inside?
- Refill ability – can we offer refill pouches and reduce costs for both consumers & manufacturers?
These important commercial and domestic factors make packaging brands re-think their offering and solution.
We will explore why and how to compare HDPE & PET within this article.
PET Plastic Bottles
PET is also known as PETE or Polyester. PET stands for Polyethylene Terephthalate and is mainly used to manufacture plastic bottles for liquid or beverage consumption. PET is also used for many disposable plastic containers that are also used for ready-made or frozen foods. PET is popular because it provides a sound oil barrier that helps with chemicals attacking the plastic. PET can also be very clear plastic and look like glass once set to its desired shape. PET can also be colour matched to be any colour.
PET bottles do not have as high of a temperature resistance (less than 131°F) as HDPE. PET containers can also handle cold temperatures of about -40°F.
HDPE Plastic Bottles
High-density polyethylene (HDPE) or polyethylene high-density (PEHD) plastic is one of the most common plastics used in manufacturing; HDPE is known for its durability and strength. While not as clear as PET plastic, HDPE bottles and containers can be translucent so you can see your product inside the bottle. This type of plastic can also be colour matched and is popular in white.
HDPE bottles and containers also are able to withstand colder and freezing temperatures very well (-110° F) and higher temperatures moderately well near 167°F.
What Are The Diversities Between PET & HDPE
Understanding the diversity of different plastic types is one thing, but what are the advantages and disadvantages of each plastic type. Here is a stats table to help make up your mind.
|STRESS CRACK RESISTANCE
|Semi Opaque – 2
|Clear – 5
|-110°F – 4
|-40°F – 3
|167°F – 4
|131°F – 3
|METHYL ETHYL KETONE RESISTANCE
|MINERAL OILS RESISTANCE
|ESSENTIAL OIL BARRIER
|WEAK ACID RESISTANCE
|ETHYL ACETATE RESISTANCE
|HYDROGEN PEROXIDE RESISTANCE
|SODIUM CHLORIDE RESISTANCE
Score Card (KEY)
Excellent = 5
Very Good = 4
Good = 3
Fair = 2
Poor = 1
As you can see, there really isn’t much between each plastic type. However, you can pick a bottle that best suits your product solutions.
HDPE is a very stiff, high-density plastic with a good temperature resistance and an excellent water vapour barrier. PET plastics are highly transparent in appearance, available in different colours, lightweight and tough against gases and liquids. PET is also highly resistant to diluted acids, oils and alcohols.