Working With Multi-wall Polycarbonate Sheets
Acrylic Pros and Cons
Acrylic is best used on flat surfaces. It does not have the flexibility of polycarbonate. Both plastics Install in a similar fashion using aluminum extrusions to allow for expansion.
Acrylic provides about 86% visible light transmission and medium to high heat loss. Its life expectancy ranges from 10 to 20 years depending on thickness and weather variables. It also attracts dust and dirt more readily than polycarbonate.
The acrylics offer a wider variety of colors and textures. It is an ideal material to use in low traffic areas and is 50% stronger than glass and weighs less. Acrylic is an alternative to glass in many glazing applications.
Polycarbonate is flexible and bends easily on curved surfaces and large radius. Single layer products can be installed with screws and rubber gaskets.
Double and triple layer multi-wall materials need plastic or aluminum "h" or "H" extrusions or to be sealed on the top and bottom with aluminum tape to keep out dust, insects, and algae. A bead of silicone along the edge keeps out water.
Polycarbonate provides high light transmission and impact resistance to protect against hail and vandalism. It is less flammable than many other plastics. There is a use for these products in many industries.