Pultruded Applications for the Home (Part 2)
by Tencom Ltd.
In the second part of our series on Pultruded Applications for the Home, we look at a few pultruded profile applications used in homebuilding.
Pultruded profiles will not rot and will not be damaged by pests or gradually degrade when exposed to moisture, temperature extremes or UV radiation from the sun. Pultruded profiles are extremely resilient and are particularly suited for the outdoors, especially where the profile is likely to be in direct contact with the ground and weather elements. In addition, FRPs require far less maintenance than organic materials like wood or rust-prone materials like iron or steel.
According to an article published in Science Direct, “Composites made from pultrusion usually have higher strength, because they have a high volume of fiber. This process also can be operated easily, and does not require high levels of labor.”
In the home building sector, pultruded products can be used in electrical wiring, as they are insulating, lightweight and are corrosion-resistant. They can also be used in door frames, door roll-ups, as well as window frames.
In 2021, in the United States, new housing starts are projected to increase to exceed 1.57 million, up from less than 500,000 in 2010. Multi-family units are projected to be at about 765,000 units this year. The biggest concern that negatively impacts new construction is the constantly rising cost of supplies. A Harvard University report detailed that with more than $424 billion in home improvements, the volume of pultruded products will continue to trend upwards especially with advantages such as flexibility (of use) and cost-effective production.
On a global basis, new housing completions are also continuing to outpace that of previous years. Even the United Kingdom saw more than 36,000 new housing starts in the first quarter of 2019, which is more than double from a decade ago.
Additional home usage applications include ladders, pruning poles, mop and broom handles, and shovels and rakes. According to a report by The Philadelphia Inquirer, Americans spent about $105 billion on lawn care in 2020. Therefore, the market outlook for pultruded composites shows potential.
Tree stakes have a tough job ─ they are subject to weather elements and have to withstand fluctuations in humidity, changes in temperature, rain, moisture, storms and more.
As a result, such profiles need to be made of materials that are lightweight, economical, durable, and scalable in order to keep transportation, handling, installation, and maintenance costs to a minimum.
For example, if you are trying to grow a sapling to a fully grown tree, then you may need to help the young plant for quite a while. It takes many years for young saplings to develop into mature trees. So, if corrective guides are not put in place, deformities can develop.
With a much longer lifespan than wood and weighing substantially less than metal, FRP composite tree stakes and driveway markers, are the best addition to your arboreal garden. Our tree stakes can be manufactured in a wide range of shapes, sizes, and colors and can last up to 15 years.
As with tree stakes, FRP composite driveway markers are also designed to stay planted in the ground outside. These markers can be used to identify areas where it is safe to drive a vehicle. They incorporate the same mechanical properties as tree stakes. These are also ideal for places that get a lot of snow and can even be made with a reflective surface for optimized visibility. They can be used in a wide range of applications, including agricultural stakes, tree stakes, snow stakes, driveway markets, reflective road markers, and so on. They do not require maintenance. However, they boast a long service life of up to 15 years.
Such markers have minimal long-term maintenance requirements which means that the total cost of ownership can be kept relatively low. They can be produced to withstand years of wear and tear in outdoor conditions by adding UV-resistant and corrosion-resistant treatments during the manufacturing process to withstand weather, moisture, and chemical exposure.
The great thing about such pultruded profiles is that they can be reused season after season as agricultural stakes, lowering cost while minimizing the impact to the environment.
An additional example of a pultruded profile suitable for home building is the fiberglass pole which is round, flexible and strong. They can be used as framing supports for a variety of structures like greenhouses, kites, and flag whips and flag poles.
Other uses include:
- Electric Fence Poles
- Electrical Supports
- Telescoping Poles for Ham Radio & CB Antennas
- Tree & Vine Supports
- Golf Flag Poles
- High Jump Poles & Cross Bars
- Lightweight and high strength
- Excellent corrosion resistance
- Electricity, heat and noise insulation
Tencom manufactures pultruded products, with fiber types including E-glass, carbon, and Kevlar. We work with composite materials including fiber types such as standard, polyester, polyurethane, vinyl ester, epoxy, and phenolic. Tencom services can be performed in almost any profile, from channels to tees, solid to conductor rods, from tubes to oval solids, and any other custom profile imaginable. The turnaround time for a project of this type is typically 6 to 8 weeks for tooling and 3 to 4 weeks for production.
The average life expectancy of a fiberglass profile is up to 80 years. With little to no maintenance required throughout this long lifespan, the total cost of ownership is kept to a minimum. Safe, reliable, stable, and cost-efficient, a pultruded composite are ideal for home applications.
For the last 22 years, Tencom has been an industry leader in the pultrusion manufacturing space. A variety of products can be used in residential construction such as electric fence poles and supports, high jump poles and crossbars, tree stakes and driveway markers, golf flag poles, and window reinforcements.
For more information about using pultruded products in home building and construction, get in touch with us today.