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Featured Safe & Not So Safe Plastics

Discussion in 'Help and Advice' started by Jagger, Oct 11, 2017.

  1. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    Here is a good bit of information that I read years ago,and I though would be a good item for all you guys and girls on here.

    Regards dan

    First part.

    Reef Safe Plastics & Leaching (myths&facts)

    1. infamousCorkscrew Tentacle Anemone
      Reef Safe Plastics & Leaching (Myths & Facts)

      This topic came up when someone in my reefclub posted a thread about plastic autotopoff container and which one should be used. Everyone in the reefclub jumped on it suggesting #1 or #2 plastics.

      I decided to do some more research on the topic because i noticed that no one ever gave any other reason why people should use those platics other than that they were food grade plastics and are not recycled . So i did some searching around and realized that people had no idea why they were recommending those types of platics.



      Myth:The higher number on the plastic means its better quality or is more pure.

      Fact: The number on the plastic has nothing to do with the quality or purity. It tells you the chemical makeup of the polymers used in the plastic and the optimal use of that plastic. The number also tells us what that plastic can be recycled into.
      *******************************************************


      Myth:#1 and #2 are food grade plastics and are better.

      Fact:Many plastics are food grade plastics. #1, #2, #5, #6 and #7. For example baby bottles are typically made from #7 plastic.
      *******************************************************

      Myth:The recycle logo means that the plastic has some recycled material added to it.

      Fact:The logo means that the item can be recycled and number in the middle also tells us what kinds of things that plastic can be recycled to.
      If the item has recycled material, it will say so in print.
      *******************************************************


      Myth: Plastics can leach just like any other material.

      Fact:Most plastics don't leach toxic substances. Once the plastic is hard, it only mixes with substance of similar macromolecular structure. Even if you heat it, it still won't mix with water or saltwater. However, some plastics (Namely #1 and #7 plastics) have been known to leach traces of toxic substances when exposed to microwaves or superhot liquids(water,milk etc).
      *******************************************************

      You will typically find these logos on plastic containers.
      [​IMG]

      What do the numbers mean and what are those letters at the bottom?


      Number 1 Plastics -- PET or PETE (polyethylene terephthalate)

      * Found In: Soft drinks, water and beer bottles; mouthwash bottles; peanut butter containers; salad dressing and vegetable oil containers; ovenable food trays.
      * Recycling: Pick up through most curbside recycling programs.
      * Recycled Into: Polar fleece, fiber, tote bags, furniture, carpet, paneling, straps, (occasionally) new containers

      It poses low risk of leaching breakdown products. Recycling rates remain relatively low (around 20 percent), though the material is in high demand by remanufacturers.
     
  2. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    Number 2 Plastics -- HDPE (high density polyethylene)

    * Found In: Milk jugs, juice bottles; bleach, detergent and household cleaner bottles; shampoo bottles; some trash and shopping bags; motor oil bottles; butter and yogurt tubs; cereal box liners
    * Recycling: Pick up through most curbside recycling programs, although some only allow those containers with necks.
    * Recycled Into: Laundry detergent bottles, oil bottles, pens, recycling containers, floor tile, drainage pipe, lumber, benches, doghouses, picnic tables, fencing

    HDPE carries low risk of leaching and is readily recyclable into many goods.

    Number 3 Plastics -- V (Vinyl) or PVC

    * Found In: Window cleaner and detergent bottles, shampoo bottles, cooking oil bottles, clear food packaging, wire jacketing, medical equipment, siding, windows, piping
    * Recycling: Rarely recycled; accepted by some plastic lumber makers.
    * Recycled Into: Decks, paneling, mudflaps, roadway gutters, flooring, cables, speed bumps, mats

    PVC contains chlorine, so its manufacture can release highly dangerous dioxins. If you must cook with PVC, don't let the plastic touch food. Never burn PVC, because it releases toxins.

    Number 4 Plastics -- LDPE (low density polyethylene)

    * Found In: Squeezable bottles; bread, frozen food, dry cleaning and shopping bags; tote bags; clothing; furniture; carpet
    * Recycling: LDPE is not often recycled through curbside programs, but some communities will accept it. Plastic shopping bags can be returned to many stores for recycling.
    * Recycled Into: Trash can liners and cans, compost bins, shipping envelopes, paneling, lumber, landscaping ties, floor tile

    Historically, LDPE has not been accepted through most American curbside recycling programs, but more and more communities are starting to accept it.
     
  3. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    [​IMG]
    Log in or

    1. Number 5 Plastics -- PP (polypropylene)

      * Found In: Some yogurt containers, syrup bottles, ketchup bottles, caps, straws, medicine bottles
      * Recycling: Number 5 plastics can be recycled through some curbside programs.
      * Recycled Into: Signal lights, battery cables, brooms, brushes, auto battery cases, ice scrapers, landscape borders, bicycle racks, rakes, bins, pallets, trays

      Polypropylene has a high melting point, and so is often chosen for containers that must accept hot liquid. It is gradually becoming more accepted by recyclers.

      Number 6 Plastics -- PS (polystyrene)

      * Found In: Disposable plates and cups, meat trays, egg cartons, carry-out containers, aspirin bottles, compact disc cases
      * Recycling: Number 6 plastics can be recycled through some curbside programs.
      * Recycled Into: Insulation, light switch plates, egg cartons, vents, rulers, foam packing, carry-out containers

      Polystyrene can be made into rigid or foam products -- in the latter case it is popularly known as the trademark Styrofoam. Evidence suggests polystyrene can leach potential toxins into foods. The material was long on environmentalists' hit lists for dispersing widely across the landscape, and for being notoriously difficult to recycle.

      Number 7 Plastics -- Miscellaneous

      * Found In: Three- and five-gallon water bottles, 'bullet-proof' materials, sunglasses, DVDs, iPod and computer cases, signs and displays, certain food containers, nylon
      * Recycling: Number 7 plastics have traditionally not been recycled, though some curbside programs now take them.
      * Recycled Into: Plastic lumber, custom-made products


      So which plastics leach and which are safe to use in reef tanks?
      I have found some aricles that could shed more light on this subject.

      I will start posting interesting articles on this thread as i find them.

      First interesting article i found on Trusted.MD

      Which plastic water bottles don't leach chemicals?

      To be certain that you are choosing a bottle that does not leach, check the recycling symbol on your bottle. If it is a #2 HDPE (high density polyethylene), or a #4 LDPE (low density polyethylene), or a #5 PP (polypropylene), your bottle is fine. The type of plastic bottle in which water is usually sold is usually a #1, and is only recommended for one time use. Do not refill it. Better to use a reusable water bottle, and fill it with your own filtered water from home and keep these single-use bottles out of the landfill.

      Unfortunately, those fabulous colourful hard plastic lexan bottles made with polycarbonate plastics and identified by the #7 recycling symbol, may leach BPA. Bisphenol A is a xenoestrogen, a known endocrine disruptor, meaning it disturbs the hormonal messaging in our bodies. Synthetic xenoestrogens are linked to breast cancer and uterine cancer in women, decreased testosterone levels in men, and are particularly devastating to babies and young children. BPA has even been linked to insulin resistance and Type 2 Diabetes
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2017
  4. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    I have more information regarding the plastics,I will upload later!

    Dan
     
  5. steve861uk

    steve861uk Registered

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    Is time to remove my upturned butter dish then :confused: Thanks for all the good info @Jagger (Dan) :)
     
  6. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    You are more then welcome.

    Dan
     
  7. shady

    shady Moderator Staff Member

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    A positive and informative thread, just what we need on this forum , thank you and nice work .
     
  8. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    Thank you for your kind words also I think threads like this get the reefing Community together!
     
  9. livingjewels

    livingjewels Registered

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    Something different to think about and a worthy read, thanks
     
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  10. hitsmith

    hitsmith Registered

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    I found this article very interesting, many thanks
     
    Jagger likes this.
  11. username

    username Registered

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    Good info, i know a number of tanks who use the good old garden centre water butt with no ill effects, just to test this i stored some ro in one for 4 weeks then sent a sample for an icp test, no ill effects were found and a zero tds remained! :)
     
  12. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    Your welcome.

    Yes I have used a water butt before and I had very high TDS readings that's why I did some research on the plastics tubs and I wanted every one to be aware of the risk with cheap tubs ect.

    Also I am glad that your TDS was low but to my knowledge and understanding is the fact is, once you start with 0 TDS, you aren't going to finish with 0 TDS. You'll get higher TDS in a matter of short time due to exposed to air ect unless it's contained in an air tight container/bucket.
     
  13. username

    username Registered

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    Well I had 100 ltr in a 120 butt for a month to be exact and still had 0tds so guess it must vary, I must have a decent butt
     
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  14. steve861uk

    steve861uk Registered

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    Well you got me looking at the bottom of my take away containers when I got in from the pub tonight

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
     
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  15. woodster

    woodster Registered

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    not such thing as a safe plastic, all plastic carries some sort of nasty chemicals ...
    research from various world wide boffins are due to update there information and new studies from
    as far back to 2010 and 2014 and are due to be published end of 2017.
    also bisphenol a is one of the worlds highest produced chemical .
    global warming will not destroy the oceans, plastic will...
    all of the above is a fact !
     
  16. woodster

    woodster Registered

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    sorry but that is virtually impossible for tds to remain at o in any container or holding vat ,
    within a few minutes ro new water draws tds from the atmosphere as when it leaves the ro unit
     
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  17. username

    username Registered

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    No need to apologise I’m lucky I guess
     
  18. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    Mmmm that's strange I also get higher reading when my water comes in contact with the air,but only 3-4 TDS.

    :risas3::risas3::risas3: I think you need start a new thread and show us all your nice butt :risas3::risas3::risas3::risas3:
     
  19. Jagger

    Jagger Registered

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    Sorry I disagree,I know a lot of reefers with plastic water butts including myself and never had any problems what so ever also reefers have been using other safe plastics for years with no ill affect at all.

    also I know that most of Chinese plastic bowls are very very harmful I watched a tv show about the cheap plastic bowls containing really bad chemicals that can get in to a human system through warming up the bowl in a microwave and it can leach out bad chemicals that can cause it to eat away at your organs over many years!


    There were startling colours here just a year ago, a dazzling array of life beneath the waves. Now this Maldivian reef is dead, killed by the stress of rising ocean temperatures. What's left is a haunting expanse of grey, a scene repeated in reefs across the globe in what has fast become a full-blown ecological catastrophe.

    The world has lost roughly half its coral reefs in the last 30 years. Scientists are now scrambling to ensure that at least a fraction of these unique ecosystems survives beyond the next three decades. The health of the planet depends on it: Coral reefs support a quarter of all marine species, as well as half a billion people around the world.

    “This isn't something that's going to happen 100 years from now. We're losing them right now,” said marine biologist Julia Baum of Canada's University of Victoria. “We're losing them really quickly, much more quickly than I think any of us ever could have imagined.” Fact.......

    Dan
     

    Attached Files:

  20. woodster

    woodster Registered

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    doesnt matter who agrees with me , but plastic leaches out chemicls in some for or another. in minute forms or large forms.
    may be update your research , and bring it up to date,
    plastic is all around us in our food and water chain = microplastics and fibres..
    microplastic is at the moment destroying the ocean
    global warming is a debatable farce, plastic is in front of you
    plus i never mentioned any healthy risk or problems using plastic ,its part of our daily life.
    have fun researching as i do, always something new to learn...........