Storing pallets of products outdoors is a common practice in many industries. Companies often do not have indoor storage space to keep all products inside. In order to transport the products to and from outdoor storage, they often need to be stabilized with a stretch plastic wrap.
The problem with stabilizing pallet loads with a stretch film and storing the product outside is the UV radiation from the sun. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun can break down the plastic wrap as well as the product in outdoor storage. In fact, most stock stretch wrap plastic will begin to break down within 30 days of outdoor storage.
Stretch Film with a UVI Additive
A stretch film with a UVI (Ultra Violet Inhibitor) additive is a great solution to this problem. The UVI additive works the same as sunscreen does to skin. It protects the plastic from breaking down by the ultraviolet light.
Stretch film is made from polyethylene plastic which rapidly degrades when exposed to UV radiation. The degradation causes the plastic wrap to lose stretch and cling ability over time making the film ineffective.
The UVI additive is clear and unable to be seen by the naked eye. It is added during the melting of the polyethylene resin pellets. Over time there have been a variety of chemicals used as UVI additives. Some of the chemicals commonly used are phenyl salicylate, polyarylates, nickel salts, titanium oxide, zinc oxide, and more. Some of the chemicals listed have been and are still used in sunscreens for human application.
The additives can protect film up to 9 months to 1 year from break down. Most extended UVI additive films are custom runs and require a 1 pallet minimum for production.
Opaque Stretch Film to Protect Products
Aside from plastic film break down when storing products outside, another common problem is product break down. Some products do not break down in sunlight when stored for a year or less, but others rapidly break down.
For storing products outdoors that are sensitive to sunlight, we recommend the use of an opaque stretch film with a UVI additive. As discussed above, the UVI additive will prevent the film from break down and the opacity of the film will protect the product.
Depending on the amount of stretch obtained and the thickness of an opaque stretch film, it can typically block out the light within 3-4 wraps. Completely blocking out sunlight will help to greatly extend the life of a product stored outdoors.
We offer stock white and black machine and hand opaque stretch film rated for 1 month of UV exposure for sale online. For extended UV periods, we offer custom runs on pallet minimums with typical lead times 1-3 weeks. Call us at 1-800-441-5090 with questions and quote requests.