The Incredible Versatility of Vinyl Film

November 03, 2021

Unless you live in a concrete bunker, the chances are high that you regularly come into contact with vinyl film. You just might not know it.

Vinyl film is used in a wide array of applications. You’ll find vinyl in bumper stickers and floooring, roofs, showers, and swimming pools. In other words, vinyl film is incredibly versatile. Here’s why.

Vinyl film is both functional and decorative.

As a material, vinyl film is a bit like a blank slate (albeit a blank slate that can hold up gallons of water). It’s perfect on its own, but it can also be formulated to do so much more. You can incorporate properties to make vinyl film scuff-resistant (think luxury vinyl tile). You can also, for example, incorporate additives to make it resistant to very, very cold temperatures, or resistant to fading in UV. It can also be formulated to be smoke, and flame retardant.

In addition, vinyl film is the material of choice for many designers because it can feature an almost infinite number of beautiful designs on printed vinyl. So that shower or pool liner isn’t just functional, it’s also visually appealing. Vinyl products can be customized for a shiny, matte, or iridescent finish and formulated in a wide array of colors.

Plus vinyl film isn’t just versatile; it’s also sustainable.

Meet the Play-Doh of manufacturing.

Alex Grover, COO of i2M, calls vinyl film “the Play-Doh of manufacturing in that the material can be repeatedly remolded and reprocessed into something new usually with the same level of integrity and functionality as the original product.”

i2M, a manufacturer of vinyl film used largely for commercial and residential construction applications in multiple sectors, is a member of the Vinyl Sustainability Council (VSC). Grover explained that joining the VSC is part of the company’s broad commitment to sustainability. “We are passionate about developing innovative solutions to help our planet and we believe that leveraging the impressively sustainable nature of vinyl is an important first step,” she said.

i2M aims to reduce the environmental impact of vinyl by addressing sustainability at different stages in the product life cycle. Grover explained that her company captures scrap and trim during its manufacturing process. That material is then chopped up and fed back into production. The company also purchases and reprocesses over a million pounds of vinyl scrap from secondary manufacturers and distributors each year. Instead of having that vinyl film end up in a landfill somewhere, it’s chopped up and reused in new products. And, thus, vinyl film’s cycle of life continues.