Why does clear plastic yellow?

How to remove yellow from transparent plastic

Methacrylate and polycarbonate are the most popular transparent plastics to replace glass but each material has different properties that make it more or less suitable for certain uses.

In this article we will see the differences between methacrylate (or acrylic) and polycarbonate, the advantages and disadvantages of each material, so you can choose the one that best suits your project. If you want, you can go directly to the summary table.

Polycarbonate and methacrylate are both polymers – material composed of different molecules joined together to form a long chain – and the process of creating these materials is called polymerization.

Methacrylate, on the other hand, is produced by synthesizing (producing) Methyl Methacrylate. Methyl Methacrylate is created by reacting Acetone with Hydrogen Cyanide to produce Acetone Cyanohydrin.

Methacrylate is stiffer, brighter, more transparent, has a wider range of colors and is less expensive than polycarbonate. Its disadvantages are that it cracks and weakens on impact. The surface of methacrylate can be polished, which allows the elimination of possible scratches, a feature that polycarbonate does not have.

How to bleach plastic

Nowadays, it is usual that the plastic trims of the vehicle are ordered painted from the factory. However, certain ranges and series integrate some plastic elements, such as door moldings or window trims, uncoated. These plastics are deep black in color and usually have a textured finish.

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Thus, the black plastics lose their intense and eye-catching color, which becomes an uneven and dull whitish black, while the transparent optics yellow and lose transparency. This deterioration is caused by these three factors:

When using any of these products, it is advisable to disassemble the affected plastic, as this makes it easier to sand and beautify it. If this is not done, it will be necessary to mask and protect the adjacent areas and components. In addition, the necessary risk prevention measures must always be observed.

To apply a stain it is necessary to clean the plastic well and degrease it and then apply the product with a sponge making longitudinal passes that cover the entire length of the part. It is not necessary to sand the piece, although it is recommended.

How to clean stained transparent plastic

The transparency of plastics is a characteristic that is given by the way they are structured at the molecular level. Generally speaking, plastics can be divided into amorphous and crystalline and, contrary to what their name would seem to indicate, crystalline plastics are not the transparent ones. Glass itself is an amorphous material, having been called a supercooled liquid, and this is the state of amorphous plastics; that of a cooled liquid.

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In each application, in addition to transparency, other qualities or characteristics are needed that amorphous plastics may not possess. One of these is cost, so means have been resorted to to make crystalline plastics with better mechanical characteristics transparent at a given price level.

Although many crystalline plastics are more or less transparent in thin film, the slowness of crystallite formation in many polymers can be exploited to achieve high transparency by rapid cooling.

How to bleach white plastic that has turned yellowish

First you can try lemon. Mix two cups of water and half a cup of lemon oil. Spray it directly on the surface, then rinse with water and wipe with a dry cloth. This will clean the plastic, remove stains and restore the shine.

Wash the clear women’s clogs with dishwashing soap, then pour a little hydrogen peroxide into a container filled with tap water. Put your transparent women’s sandals in there for a few hours and then it is important that they air dry but not in direct sunlight.

It is actually a chemical process of mixing a mixture of chemicals called “retardants” that makes it a less flammable and safer product. But it is this mixture between the polymers of the plastic and the retardants that makes the plastic turn yellow. And if you also add heat, air, natural light… All this helps this process to become even faster.

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And if you are not convinced by this experiment, we are going to give you another tip, to see if this one works for you. Take baking soda and with a little bit of the set of a lemon make a paste with which you have to cover the phone case. Let it act for about 30 minutes. Then rub with a sponge to leave the case perfect as it was before. Rinse with water and ready.