Vinyl Frequently Asked Questions
Crude Oil, Natural Gas and Salt are the raw materials used in the production of Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) Resin. Phoenix Vinyl compound is formulated from the premium grade raw materials, which include Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) Resin, UV inhibitors, impact modifiers, stabilizers and toners. Phoenix Vinyl’s formulation is built upon Phoenix Vinyl’s many years of technical experience in the PVC industry. Using only premium grade raw materials in conjunction with superior technical formulation capabilities produces a vinyl product that is far above the vinyl industry as a whole.
The PVC Manufacturing Process
The basic chemicals utilized in manufacturing PVC – ethylene and chlorine – are derived from materials nature provides. Ethylene is made from crude oil or natural gas and chlorine is made from salt. These gases are chemically reacted to form ethylene dichloride (EDC). The EDC is heated, or cracked producing two gases, hydrodren chloride (HCI) and vinyl chloride monomer (VCM).
Vinyl chloride monomer is the basic building block used to convert VCM into PVC resin. The term poly means many. PVC is simply many molocules of vinyl chloride.
A chemical reaction called polymerization is used to convert VCM into PVC resin. This is accomplished by making VCM react with itself to form a powdery white solid materia l- PVC resin.
PVC resin is blended with a wide variety of ingredients such as stabilizers, coloring, and processing aids, UV Inhibitors and plasticizers to produce compounds in powder or pellet form. Products made from these compounds have an almost infinite rang e- from rigid PVC pipe, which has no plasticizers, to very flexible vinyl products such as an upolstery and wall coverings.
Source: PVC and Fire, Vinyl Council of Canada
Profiles: Vinyl fence starts out as a PVC powder (Resin) that, when blended with all the required ingredients of our formulation is called compound. This compound then is fed into an extruder. With the proper amount of heat, pressure and mixing via screws in the extruder, the compound becomes malleable vinyl. This vinyl is then fed through a die in the shape of the finished profile. Using vacuum technology to keep the soft pliable vinyl in the proper shape, water is used to cool the vinyl into it’s final rigid state.
Fabrication: A Phoenix Vinyl fabricatior cuts the wide variety of profiles to the proper lenth for the design of the fence required. The fabricator then routes holes into the rails, so that the pickets can be inserted into them, then holes are routed into the posts so that the rails can be inserted into them. They then may assemble the completed fence sections or leave knocked down for distribution.
Most assembly of vinyl fencing is done by snapping the rails into the post using rails that are tabbed with a special tabbing, or notching tool. Depending on the styles of fence, different fasteners can be used. Vinyl channels, which are often used in the fabrication of Privacy and Semi-Privacy styles, are attached using rivits or screws.
Mildew feeds off of organic materials. Vinyl (PVC) is non-organic and therefore does not support mildew. Mildew that grows on Vinyl is actual feeding off of the organic materials (dirt) that have become embedded in or stuck to the vinyl. Phoenix Vinyl profiles have a high gloss and smooth, non-porous surface that makes it very difficult for organic materials to attach to, and therefore, for mildew to thrive on. This, combined with the use of non-chalking TiO2 helps to prevent most mildew growth. The surface of vinyl fence that contains chalking TiO2 deteriorates at a much more accelerated level compared to non-chalking TiO2 creating a rougher surface that dirt and therefore mildew can attach itself more easily to. Only under very consistently damp conditions will the possibility of mildew occur. If mildew does appear, a mild solution of bleach and water will easily remove it.
Phoenix Vinyl’s use of durable grade non-chalking TiO2 in their vinyl (PVC) formulation ensures that there will be a very minimal chalking of our fence products. All vinyl fencing will chalk sooner or later, but with the superior protection capabilities of our TiO2 this will be kept to a bare minimum. Chalking is the deterioration of the vinyl surface thereby exposing the TiO2 particles to the surface. The white powder that you can wipe off from the surface of most vinyl fences is the TiO2 particles mixed with deteriorated vinyl (PVC). Phoenix Vinyl is formulated for exceptional beauty over a full lifetime.
Phoenix Vinyl’s products are engineered to retain their beauty and good looks throughout their lifetime. The only reason to use paints on our vinyl products would be to change the color of the product. Phoenix Vinyl does not recommend painting vinyl (PVC). There are paints that are available to paint vinyl but painting or otherwise treating Phoenix Vinyl products voids the lifetime warranty.
The initial cost of vinyl (PVC) when compared to wood is slightly higher for the material costs in most regions of the country. However with the ever-increasing cost of wood this difference is becoming very minor in some regions. When all the varied cost factors are taken into account over the life of your fence, vinyl (PVC) becomes the true money saver. Factors such as having to replace the wood fence in 5-15 years, yearly maintenance costs (labor, paint, replacement boards, etc), and the effects on the environment because of arsenic in treated wood or the toxic chemicals needed to maintain a wood fence show that wood truly isn’t as cost effective in the end. Some costs are hard to measure such as the costs to you of having a fence that looks in need of maintenance. The cost difference quickly vanishes, and in fact vinyl becomes a sound and financially viable investment in the future of your home. Once your Phoenix Vinyl fence is installed you do not have to worry about painting, nails rusting, boards rotting, or splinters.
Phoenix Vinyl is formulated using a superior durable grade of non-chalking TiO2 that protects the vinyl (PVC) from the harmful effects of the Sun’s UV rays. As long as your fence is kept clean, with a periodic wash from a garden hose, it will not turn yellow.
Phoenix Vinyl products are safe and non-toxic. They will not breakdown and release harmful chemicals into the ground and do not require toxic chemicals (stains, waterproofing, paint, paint thinner) for regular upkeep like treated lumber can. No trees are used in the manufacture of Phoenix Vinyl fences. Because of the exceptional long life of Phoenix Vinyl fence profiles, several times the amount of wood that is needed to manufacture the same fence in wood can be saved over the lifetime of the Phoenix Vinyl fence. If the Phoenix Vinyl ever needs to be taken down, it can be recycled into other products, such as hoses and watering cans.
This is the term used for vinyl product that does not contain recycled products. Recycled products that may be imported into an extrusion plant may contain impurities or lower grade vinyl which can seriously affect the finished product’s resilience, impact resistance and UV inhibition. Phoenix Vinyl uses only virgin ingredients in the extruding of our products.
Any fence will break when enough force is applied. However, Phoenix Vinyl profiles are formulated using only the highest quality impact modifiers in precisely engineered amounts to ensure the greatest impact resistance available. Phoenix Vinyl profiles are engineered to withstand higher impacts than the minimum required by ASTM.