Electrical Enclosures: The Importance of Material Choices

31 Dec

Electrical enclosures are just plain boxes, but choosing the right material for its creation is a tricky process that needs careful consideration. Engineers share the opinion that the physical properties on any type of enclosure is determined by the materials which it is build of and many possibilities available tell us that quality is always above price.

Your best choice is between metal or plastic enclosures for electronics. Metal enclosure offers you strong impact resistance and explosion protection, the perfect choice when planning to place it in exposed locations and in hazardous applications. These desirable properties are: cable retention, UV protection, ease of installation and moderate impact protection and cost. Plastic enclosures for electronics cover the same requirements and many of them are superior than the metal units.

When choosing the right material, it is always a good idea to look at the most common materials used:


PVC: the budget option

Being one of the most used in the world, from small junction boxes to terminal blocks and connectors, PVC enclosures are real cheap compared to the other plastics for a reason; they contain toxic materials and can be released easily into the air, especially when exposed to UV light. In the last couple of years, manufacturers have started to move away from PVC because of that reason.

Plycarbonate and Polystyrene

Plycarbonate is created to take consequential knocks and offers you UV protection, fulfilling all the regulations requirements. Polystyrene provides medium resistance and meets the requirement of the regulation. Both materials are in solid condition that hold up balanced impact, bot equipped with high cable protection and it is used for gelling compounds and cable glands. Polystyrene is more UV resistant than the polycarbonate, but polycarbonate is more thermally stable which can have big impact in applications where the heat is higher and constant. Best suitable usage of polycarbonate is when you are doing outdoor installation and hot environments.

Glass reinforced polyester (GRP)

Strong and hard material that is best used in tough industrial environments and is UV-stabilised. GRP enclosure is the best option on the market, giving you durability, support and reliability. It is one of the most expensive enclosures, but it is worth every penny you pay for it. GRP is very thick and strong offering you increased protection from impacts and effective corrosion in marines, offshores and water treatments.


Electrical enclosures are surrounding us everywhere you can imagine helping us deal with different challenges. The market is big and that’s why companies are investing so heavily to research and develop better materials and design the best possible enclosures that imagination can sparkle. Plastic enclosures for electronics are without competition the best enclosures that you can have for your household. Some applications need specialized materials that go beyond the normal consumer requirements and if you order this kind of enclosure, you should consult with the manufacturer to get the right order for your needs. With great durability, power, strength and non-stop development these enclosures are here to stay.

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