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Why is plastic wood discolored? Cause and treatment

Status plastic wood is discolored It's not too rare on the market. Some dealers often wonder why 2 different batches of wood plastic have color deviations? what reason? The goods delivered are not the same color as the sample when offered? What is the cause of this line of exterior decoration materials to be discolored? How did Kosmos fix this problem? We invite you to learn more through the following article!

The condition of discolored plastic wood is not uncommon.
The condition of discolored plastic wood is not uncommon.

What causes plastic wood to be discolored.

There are 4 factors that cause the color deviation of plastic wood:

  • Input material color.
  • Factors of temperature, extrusion speed in the production process.
  • Natural fading process.
  • Visual effects.

Plastic wood is a type of composite material (material with a mixture of 2 or more materials). They are made from wood pulp, plastic beads and some accompanying additives (binders, colorants). Through extrusion technology, this material is formed on the mold.

Outdoor plastic wood construction
Outdoor plastic wood construction.

Input material color.

Plastic wood is a monolithic extruded product, so the core layer and the surface layer are uniform. Which color material is the surface color, so the color of the product depends directly on the source of the input material.

Because the input materials of plastic wood materials are quite diverse, the color will be different, directly causing the color deviation of the product.

Outdoor plastic wood has no coating, so the color of the material is clearly visible.
Outdoor plastic wood has no coating, so the color of the material is clearly visible.

Reading here, some of you will wonder "why does laminate flooring also use natural wood pulp but does not have this color deviation problem?". The answer is because the structure of laminate flooring is different from plastic wood.

The surface of the laminate floor is covered with decorative film, completely independent of the wood core underneath. That is also the reason the color deviation in laminate flooring is very rare, almost nonexistent.

The color of laminate flooring does not depend on the color of the material like plastic wood.
The color of laminate flooring does not depend on the color of the material like plastic wood.

Plastic wood is discolored during production.

Extrusion speed / machine temperature / water temperature during extrusion.

The color of the plastic wood surface is created right in the extrusion process. Therefore, even a small change in one of the factors such as extrusion speed, machine temperature or coolant temperature can cause slight color difference between batches.

Plastic wood is discolored due to the sanding process.

After the extrusion process comes the surface sanding process. Plastic wood products will be sanded with sandpaper and every 200 products will change the paper once. The abrasiveness of the sandpaper will affect the surface of the product. We have to look closely to see that the plastic wood products in the same batch are slightly discolored, the deviation is insignificant.

The color deviation of plastic wood due to the sanding process is not significant.
The color deviation of plastic wood due to the sanding process is not significant.

Outdoor plastic wood is discolored due to the natural fading process.

Plastic wood when exposed to the outside environment in the first 3 months will fade about 5 - 10%, then the color will stay stable later on.

For the above reason, the plastic wood sample book (catalog containing real plastic wood products, providing a real experience for customers before buying) is often displayed at the store for a while, brought to the door by the dealer. at the construction site to show customers faded samples.

Another reason why The color of plastic wood products in the sample book is different from the actual product, that's because they belong to 2 different batches!

Plastic wood samples are usually pre-cut in bulk to send to agents and customers for reference. When the customer closes the sample, the lot of that sample may be out of stock. Therefore, the outgoing goods will belong to a new shipment, resulting in color differences between the sample bar and the outgoing goods.

Sample book of outdoor plastic wood products.
Sample book of outdoor plastic wood products.

After a certain time of providing samples, Kosmos will actively contact and discuss with the dealer to update the most standard new sample bars.

There is an EXCEPTION that causes plastic wood grain to completely fade WRONG USE!

Plastic wood has many types of surfaces, including 2D wood grain surfaces. The color of plastic wood does not change in the sun 2D wood grain printing ink it's not like that. This ink will fade in direct sunlight, leaving the product surface smooth after long periods of use. Therefore, we should not use 2D grain plastic wood in locations such as: gates, facades, signs, outdoor pool floors, etc., but should only be used in shaded areas such as: balconies, porches, etc. …

If you want to cover the gate door, where it is exposed to direct sunlight for a long time, then 3D grain plastic wood, 2-skin plastic wood would be more suitable.

See more: Instructions for using 2D grain plastic wood properly.

2D wood grain printing ink on plastic wood panels fades when covering gate doors, where they are exposed to direct sunlight for a long time.
2D wood grain printing ink on plastic wood panels fades when covering gate doors, where they are exposed to direct sunlight for a long time.

The visual effect makes us see that the plastic wood is discolored.

With each surface design such as 2D texture, 3D pattern, stripe... will create different color visual effects. In this case, even though the plastic wood products are manufactured in the same batch, with the same input materials, we still see them with color deviation if seen with the naked eye.

Based on the viewing angle, the plastic wood has a 3D wood grain surface with different color effects.
Based on the viewing angle, the plastic wood has a 3D wood grain surface with different color effects.

Permissible error on color deviation of outdoor plastic wood

The color deviation of plastic wood cannot be discerned with the naked eye because they are also affected by light, viewing angle and the surrounding environment. For example, the same floor bar, seen with the naked eye in the morning and noon, or viewed at a direct angle with an angle, will also see a different color.

To determine the color deviation most accurately, people will use a machine to measure the color deviation Delta e (de, ∆ e).

Delta E color difference meter.
Delta E color difference meter.

Delta E is a standard measurement index created by the International Commission on Illumination (Commission Internationale de l'Eclairage) to determine the degree of deviation between two colors. Color deviation has scale from 0 to 100 and the lower the Delta E, the more accurate the color.

  • Color difference in 1 lot: Delta e is less than 3 (e < 3).
The image of plastic wood products is discolored in the same lot.
The image of plastic wood products is discolored in the same lot.
  • Color difference between 2 lots: Delta e is less than 5 (e < 5).
The image of plastic wood products in 2 different batches is deviated in color.
The image of plastic wood products in 2 different batches is deviated in color.

In general, you do not need to worry too much about this color difference problem. Because if the color deviation of plastic wood is less than 5 (∆ e < 5), then after 3 months of use (when the color of plastic wood fades due to the impact of the environment) they will be the same color.

If the plastic wood product has a color deviation within the allowed error, but the color is still uneven after 3 month used, Kosmos commits to completely replace the shipment for your agent.

How does Kosmos handle discolored plastic wood?

In general, the color deviation of plastic wood is inevitable in any distribution warehouse, including Kosmos Vietnam. We will have treatment plans to solve the color deviation in the best way for you.

Check carefully before shipping.

Before sending the goods to the site, Kosmos will carefully check the product to make sure the color is the same (including the same shipment). At the same time, we will also send photos and videos to the agent for confirmation before shipment.

In case the agent imports the goods but the color is still not satisfied, Kosmos will support to exchange the goods and bear an additional shipping fee (in case the shipment is intact). To avoid wasting both parties' time, please help Kosmos compare the color before shipping.

Kosmos double-checks the product to make sure the colors are the same.
Kosmos double-checks the product to make sure the colors are the same.

In case you need to export goods in large quantities, you should notify the warehouse in advance 1-2 day. Let Kosmos staff have time to prepare and check the goods in the most proper way before leaving the warehouse.

Keep the goods in the same lot for the dealer in case it arises.

Agents can report the expected quantity of plastic wood products to Kosmos, so that Kosmos keeps that quantity at the warehouse, avoiding the case that goods of the same construction are shipped in different batches.

Advise customers to use plastic wood from different batches for the best fit.

For extremely large-scale projects, it is inevitable to have to use plastic wood products of different batches. Therefore, in order to ensure the same color for the project, Kosmos will try to compare the color of plastic wood between the lots and select the batches with the most similar color for delivery.

Kosmos always checks the color of plastic wood products thoroughly before delivery.
Kosmos always checks the color of plastic wood products thoroughly before delivery.

Kosmos will also support to separate the lot according to each other construction location to avoid revealing the color deviation of the plastic wood, for example:

  • The first batch of plastic wood flooring will be used to construct the pool floor. The second lot of plastic wood flooring is used to construct the garden floor.
  • The first batch of panels is used to install the 3rd floor balcony. The second batch of panels is used to install the 4th floor balcony.

 Thus, we can ensure color uniformity for each space.

Use plastic wood of different batches in different locations.
Use plastic wood of different batches in different locations.

We are committed to Kosmos wood plastic warranty is 5 years if you find any manufacturer defect. Promise to always accompany and support agents throughout the cooperation process. Reference inspection policy , and return policy of Kosmos Vietnam for more details.

Kosmos Vietnam plastic wood warehouse always accompanies the agent.
Kosmos Vietnam plastic wood warehouse always accompanies the agent.

With a large warehouse area (more than 10.000 m2), Kosmos Vietnam warehouse always has a large amount of goods in stock. Ensure the smooth supply of plastic wood, limiting the situation plastic wood is discolored. All your questions will be answered quickly by Kosmos via: (+84) 903 093 221.

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