The Beginner’s Guide to Plastic Living Hinges

Living hinges by Monroe

Hinges come in a variety of styles. While you might be familiar with traditional styles consisting of two leaks and an integrated knuckles, there are other styles that often go unnoticed, such as plastic living hinges.

Plastic living hinges don’t look like ordinary, traditional hinges. As shown in the adjacent photo, they are essentially strips of plastic. Below is a beginner’s guide to plastic living hinges.

What Are Plastic Living Hinges?

Plastic living hinges are flexible bearings made of plastic, such as polypropylene plastic. They don’t have separate parts. While traditional hinges consist of two leafs — the leafs are connected with a pin — plastic living hinges consist of a single part: a strip of flexible plastic. They are thin, flexible hinges that offer several advantages over traditional hinges.

Common Applications for Plastic Living Hinges

While traditional hinges are commonly used for doors, cabinets, and other pieces of furniture, plastic living hinges are used in other applications

Pill bottles may feature plastic living hinges. Many pill bottles use a plastic living hinge for their lid. You can pull the lid open, and you can push it closed. The plastic living hinge will allow the lit to rotate away from the bottle itself.

Certain types of candy and food packages may feature plastic living hinges as well. Plastic food packages often have a lid similar to that of a pill bottle. The lid has a plastic living hinge that allows it to rotate away from the rest of the package.

Shampoo and conditioner bottles commonly have plastic living hinges. The lids to haircare products such as these may feature a plastic living hinge.

Advantages of Plastic Living Hinges

When compared to traditional hinges, plastic living hinges offer several advantages. Since they are made entirely of plastic, they are lightweight. Traditional hinges are almost always made of a metal. Whether steel, aluminum, brass or any other metal, they are typically heavier than plastic living hinges.

Plastic living hinges are quiet. They produce little or no noise during use. You can quietly open and close lids or other objects connected to a plastic living hinge.

Plastic living hinges are maintenance-free. You don’t have to tighten any fasteners, apply lubricant or perform other activities to maintain them.

Unlike traditional hinges made of metal, plastic living hinges are completely protected from corrosion. They won’t develop rust or corrosion. You can use plastic living hinges in humid or wet environments without fear of corrosion.

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