Advantages And Disadvantages Of Injection Molding

pros cons plastic injection molding manufacturing process

Plastic injection molding is said to be one of the most efficient overall among all types of plastic manufacturing processes. That alone is enough reason for your to consider going with it for your next mass production highly. But is it the best option? Especially now that with all the modern developments in plastic production and manufacturing, is injection molding the most suitable choice? 

To help you decide, we have provided below all advantages of injection molding that make it above any methods. We have also mentioned some disadvantages that you may want to consider in case they may apply to you or are significant factors that may affect your production. 

Plastic Injection Molding 

Plastic injection molding is one type of plastic manufacturing process. This method helps you mass-produce plastic parts in a short amount of time and cost-efficient approach. It heavily relies on the injection molding machine and less on manual labor. 

There are four main steps in an injection molding cycle: clamping, injection, cooling, and ejection. Before that, a critical factor in the production that needs to be perfected is the mold, as it will be the basis of the part’s shape. Once you have acquired a good-quality mold for the machine, then the production can start. 

The most common products or parts produced with plastic injection molding vary from household items, automotive parts to medical instruments -- anything big or small created with plastic material. Examples of these are pieces of furniture, electrical boxes, trays, insulators, containers, bins, and a lot more. 

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Plastic Injection Molding 

As promised, here are the pros and cons of plastic injection molding, which may help you figure out if this is the best route for your production needs. 

Pros Of Injection Molding

Cost-Efficient 

First of all, since the entire process is more of a machine-based production, labor costs are much lower. Furthermore, even though initial costs can be high, you will realize that once you have produced more parts, the higher the chances you recover your investment costs -- which makes it better and more cost-efficient. 

Fast Production 

If you compare it with other plastic manufacturing processes like CNC machining or 3D printing, the production time with injection molding can be very impressive. It can produce outputs at a high rate which makes it a time-efficient choice. 

Mold Tool Can Be Reused 

If done with high quality, all tools, especially the mold, can be used again in future productions of the same parts. By then, costs will be significantly lower than initial costs, and you have likely recovered your investment costs. This is where the idea of injection molding being cost-efficient starts. 

Can Produce Highly Intricate Parts 

When it comes to geometric shapes and specific designs, injection molding will be a good option. The high pressure allows the polymer to take the form of the mold up to the most intricate hole -- which some manufacturing processes could not do. It will enable you to add more features and specific dimensions. 

The injection process also more convenient in inserting resin into the mold compared to other manufacturing processes. 

The Vast Range Of Materials 

Another significant thing about plastic injection molding is that you have a wide variety of materials that you can choose from for your parts. You can opt for thermoplastics like ABS, polypropylene, polycarbonate, or polyetherimide. Acrylics, PVC, and nylons are also compatible materials for injection molding. 

Lower Environmental Impact 

Unlike other processes where scraps are already considered waste, with injection molding, excessive plastic during production can be molten again and injected into the machine to produce more parts. Because of this, injection molding causes lower negative impacts on the environment. 

Only Minor Finishing Touches 

Since parts produced with injection molding are considered suitable as finished, they require less time for final detailing, which cuts production time shorter than other processes. 

Cons Of Injection Molding

Principal Costs Are High 

As mentioned earlier, initial costs for this type of manufacturing process can be very high. It includes machine costs and costs for mold tools and the designs, which require highly skilled manual labor. Trials and prototyping to make sure that the final prototypes pass the standards can also jack up the charges before you get to finalize it for mass production. 

Possible Design Restrictions 

Design restrictions can only occur if the part is too large. Although injection molding can still make it happen, costs will be too astronomical since you will need larger molds and tools. 

It can be inefficient for low-volume productions. If you only need a small-scale number of parts, then injection molding would be an unprofitable and inconvenient option. 

The mold needs to be of high quality. The quality of the mold will affect the entire production; that is why it is crucial to invest in premium mold tools made by a skillful maker. 

Injection Molding Manufacturers 

There are several injection molding companies out there that may claim they are the best. But only you can figure out which one will deliver the most efficient and finest services for you. 

Opt for a plastic injection manufacturer is credible and has proven its expertise in the field. The more experience they have with the kind of production similar to yours, the better chances that they will be able to provide satisfactory services -- not only in producing high-quality parts but also with outstanding customer support. You want an expert that you can easily talk to with your concerns and issues. Always check if they are a certified manufacturer. 

You can look for an injection molding company through the internet. Usually, the best companies have websites complete with their mission, vision, and services list. They also provide contact numbers which you can call for queries. This makes it easier to reach out to any potential plastic manufacturer that you want to work with. 

Overall, analyze the pros and cons of plastic injection molding along with advantages vs disadvantages of different companies and machines to make the right business decision.

The Bottom Line Of Injection Molding In Manufacturing

When finding and choosing a production system for your parts, you cannot deny that there are risks that come with it. That is why it is vital for you to assess possible issues that may arise along the way and formulate contingency plans that will not affect production costs and time. With extensive research, you will be able to have an idea of the risks you can be prone to. This is the good thing about reading the potential advantages and disadvantages of plastic injection molding, as it can prepare you for what you should expect.

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