Advantages and Disadvantages of Injection Molding Process
Injection molding is the most commonly used process for manufacturing plastic components.
This process utilizes injection molding machines, raw plastic materials, and molds to melt the plastic and inject it into the mold, where it solidifies and forms the final component.
This process exhibits significant variations in size, complexity, and application when manufacturing various products.
Injection molding is employed in the production of thin-wall plastic components for various applications, with plastic housings being the most common.
Plastic housings are thin-walled shells that often require many ribs and protrusions on the interior. These housings are used in a wide range of products, including household appliances, consumer electronics, power tools, and automotive dashboards.
Other common thin-wall products include different types of open containers, such as buckets.
Injection molding is also used to manufacture several daily supplies like toothbrushes or small plastic toys.
Many medical devices, including valves and syringes, are also produced by injection molding.
Now that we have an understanding of the applications of injection molding, let’s delve into the advantages and disadvantages of the injection molding process.
1. Advantages of Injection Molding Process
(1) Precise Control of Wall Thickness Distribution:
The use of injection molds allows for precise control of the wall thickness distribution of the molded blanks, resulting in containers with more uniform wall thickness. This helps avoid the thinning phenomenon commonly observed in corners of products produced by general blow molding.
The product weight can be controlled within ±0.1g, thread accuracy within the range of ±100μm, and the mouth size is precise, ensuring high molding accuracy for products with narrow necks.
(2) No Secondary Processing Required:
The obtained products do not require secondary processing, are seamless, saving time on product finishing.
(3) Efficient Use of Material:
The injection-molded blanks can be fully inflated and molded inside the mold cavity without generating waste during the processing, reducing material waste in the molding process.
(4) Smooth Surface Products with No Scratches:
The process yields products with a smooth surface, free of scratches, and with clear surface text and patterns.
(5) Economical for Small-Batch Production:
It is cost-effective for producing small batches of products.
(6) Wide Applicability to Plastic Types:
It has a broad range of applicability to various plastic types.
(7) High Automation Level, Multi-Mold Production, and High Production Efficiency:
The process features high automation levels, enabling multi-mold production and achieving high production efficiency.
2. Disadvantages of the Injection Molding Process
(1) Multiple Molds and High Equipment Costs:
The molding process requires the molds, along with a hollow core mold. Additionally, the molds for injection molding need to withstand high pressure, leading to high equipment costs.
(2) High Temperature of Injection Molding:
The injection molding temperature is high, and the formed product requires an extended cooling and setting time after blowing in the injection mold.
This prolongs the entire molding cycle, affecting production efficiency.
(3) High Internal Stress in Injection Molding:
The injection-molded blanks often have high internal stress, they are prone to uneven cooling. This makes it susceptible to stress cracking, especially when producing complex-shaped and large-sized products.
Therefore, the shape and size of the products are limited, and this process is only suitable for producing small items used in cosmetics, daily necessities, pharmaceutical packaging, food packaging, and similar fields.
(4) High Skill Requirements for Operators:
The operation of injection molding requires a high level of skill from operators.