Cement is the climate killer in the construction sector. The cement industry is responsible for 8% of global carbon dioxide emissions, which is two times more than those from shipping and shipping.
Even worse, many are turning a blind eye to its carbon footprint since it has revolutionized construction and improved modern living standards globally. The good news is that recent researchers discovered a way to make this massive CO2 emitter eco-friendlier.
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This eco-cement is called plastic cement. While only a small proportion of concrete can be replaced by plastic in this material, it can reduce ordinary cement’s colossal CO2 emissions while reducing plastic waste simultaneously.
Cement vs. Plastic Cement
Cement is a binding material typically made from limestone (pulverized and burned) and shale mixtures (or clay). It’s often called portland cement or hydraulic cement. It’s mainly used in construction work as a binder in concrete, joint sealant, and stucco walls.
Plastic cement, on the other hand, is made of a percentage of cement and another percentage of plastic. It’s also called polystyrene cement or poly cement. It’s more flexible than cement since it can be used not only in construction but also in bonding other non-porous items.
Listed below are some of the plastic cement’s best uses.
1. Repair Cracks
Plastic cement is a general utility adhesive for sealing or filling any cracks, gaps, or joints in concrete, masonry, wood, metal, and other construction materials. One of its main advantages is that it’s highly resistant to moisture.
Since you can use it on dry and wet surfaces, it’s a great material to seal exterior surfaces like vents, eaves, skylights, flashings, and roofs. However, before applying it, get rid of dirt, grease, and rust first to ensure the best results.
2. Produce Exterior Finishes
Not only can plastic cement repair exterior surfaces, but it also produces them. For example, the material can be mixed with sand to create plasters, stuccos, and other structural sheathing materials. Additionally, since it’s water-resistant, plastic cement makes strong and durable exterior surfaces.
3. Fix and Improve Wooden Items
As stated earlier, plastic cement can also be used in any woodworking item. It can fix loose or detached wooden furniture parts and fill holes in any wooden craft. Further, the plastic cement’s sealing effect can prevent wood rot and extend the longevity of wooden items.
4. Use in Plumbing
Industrial-grade solvent cement is typically the go-to glue for polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes. Many binding agents can’t provide a lasting hold on PVC, but plastic cement can. In addition, due to PVC’s plastic properties, plastic cement is highly effective in assembling plastic pipes.
5. Bond Non-Porous Items
Since it can bond PVC pipes, it’s a given that plastic cement can also come in handy in doing light repairs of other non-porous materials. For example, it can salvage any crack or chip in things made of wood, rubber, glassware, ceramics, metal, and even plastic.
6. Assemble Toys and Models
In addition to PVC, plastic cement works well on polystyrene and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), found in toys and model kits. Like PVC, they have plastic properties. That means plastic cement can again be an indispensable aid in repairing and assembling toys and model items made of these plastics.
Plastic models and ceramic figurines can be fixed and combined with plastic cement. For application, make sure to only apply sparingly to one surface. Then, hold the parts needed to be joined together for at least 20 seconds and allow them to dry for around two hours. Do the same with plastic items.
7. Plastic Cement Bond Laminates and Veneers
Plastic cement can also help you to get your desired finish in your kitchen. For instance, it can be used to bond plastic laminates to your countertops or attach plastic or wooden veneers to your cabinet doors.
The best part of it is that it gives a quick result. It can cure in just a few minutes. Although it sets fast almost upon application, it gives an effective bond for the attached materials. Remember to only apply a thin, even coating of plastic cement with a foam paint roller.
Plastic Cement vs. Super Glue
Plastic cement and superglue have different compositions. Specifically, plastic cement is made of butyl acetate, acetone, butanone, and other quick-setting ingredients. In contrast, super glue is made of ethyl 2-cyanoacrylate, polymethyl, and hydroquinone.
In terms of bonding, plastic cement is strong enough to melt non-porous items, especially plastics, before fusing the parts. This process creates an unbreakable bond, making plastic cement hard to remove.
Conversely, superglue doesn’t weld plastic pieces together well. It doesn’t melt items but rather only holds them together. Moreover, it has weak torsional strength. In other words, you can easily get rid of it with twisting motions.
Plastic cement is a versatile bonding agent. It can provide high-strength bonds on various surfaces, such as plastic, rubber, leather, wood, metal, tile, concrete, laminate, veneers, and so much more. However, it produces a bad solvent odor, so use it in well-ventilated areas only.