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Is TPE Toxic?

Posted by Joe Hoffman
Is TPE Toxic?

It’s common for applications to require parts that can withstand exposure to oil or sunlight. In other situations, it’s essential to consider how the material will impact the end user.

From medical tubing to consumer goods, it’s essential for some products to be safe for human use. The problem is that some compounds can lead to toxic responses that can have dire effects on end users, limiting businesses options for wat they can and should use to manufacture their parts. The good news is that thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) – one of the most appealing materials for consumer goods – is a safe option for industries in need of non-toxic parts.

What Makes TPE Non-Toxic?

Sometimes what makes a material a good choice is what it doesn’t feature. TPE doesn’t contain several harmful substances that make other rubbers and plastics unsafe for consumer goods, medical applications, and other designs that can’t be toxic. That includes substances like phthalates, latex, and BPA. TPE is also hypoallergenic, making it ideal for any application that will result in direct contact with people’s skin.

Another advantage of TPE is that it can also handle a lot of wear and tear, even in environments with strict cleaning regiments. TPE parts can stretch, bend, and handle regular sterilization. That makes them ideal for food production, clean rooms, and other environments where patient and consumer safety is absolutely essential.

Does Non-Toxic TPE Need to Meet Any Other Standards?

Even though TPE is inherently safe for human use, there are a various regulations that TPE parts must meet for use in certain applications. Even if TPE may be non-toxic by definition, certain industries or use cases can require companies to keep a close eye on which chemicals (and how much of those chemicals) are present in any material before it can be cleared for use.

The food industry is one such market that needs materials to meet Food and Drug Administration (FDA) standards to keep parts in production facilities and other safe for use. Most TPE formulations are approved by the FDA, but there may be some that don’t pass safety standards. Children’s products also have specific safety requirements to keep people safe. Fortunately, rubber part suppliers can source specific formulations of TPE to ensure it meets specific industry regulations.

Invest in Non-Toxic TPE Parts Based on Your Exact Needs

TPE is an incredibly versatile material both because of its non-toxic benefits and several other desirable qualities. However, there are plenty of other factors that affect just how well your material of choice will fare in your application.

The good news is that you don’t have to determine the best, most cost-effective part solution on your own. Timco partners with businesses to supply them with custom rubber and plastic parts made specifically for their applications. Give us a call at 800-969-6242 or contact us online to talk to one of our experts about non-toxic TPE parts for your business.