What Are Foaming Agents in Plastics Manufacturing and Why Do They Matter

Foaming agents are a common additive used in plastics processing and typically used in injection molding and other various processes. They give plastics specific properties, making them suitable for a variety of applications. More specifically, foaming agents are responsible for forming gas-filled cavities called voids that reduce finished product weight and the volume of raw plastic components required.

In this article, we will explore what foaming agents are, how they are used in plastics manufacturing, and why they matter.

In this article, we will explore what foaming agents are, how they are used in plastics manufacturing, and why they matter.

What are Foaming Agents in Plastics Manufacturing?

Foaming agents are a key component in the plastics manufacturing process. They reduce the overall density of plastic, allowing for lighter and more cost-effective products. With less density, you can use fewer raw materials in the manufacturing process.

Foaming agents can be divided into two categories: 

  • Physical Foaming Agents: Work through either mechanical or thermal processes
  • Chemical Foaming Agents: Use chemical reactions

The type of foaming agent used depends on the particular application and desired properties of the plastic product.

Benefits of Foaming Agents in Plastics Manufacturing

There are many benefits of using foaming agents, such as:

Weight Reductions

Plastic manufactured using foaming agents weighs less than traditional plastics. This means that you can make more pieces from the same raw materials. You can also save on shipping costs, since your products will weigh less.

Improved Cycle Times

Using less plastic by using foaming agents can also improve cycle times since there is less time needed to mold and dry out components. Operators can obtain cycle time reduction by 10-20%, which translates to significant savings.

Learn more about how foaming agents help reduce cycle times. 

Better Structural Stability

Products made with foaming agents have better structural stability. This makes it possible to remove sink marks and warpage.

Foaming Agents are Safe

Foaming agents create a safer byproduct through endothermics, which is considered much safer than exothermic reactions. Exothermics have hazardous and corrosive byproducts. This isn’t the case with endothermics. 

More Environmentally Friendly

Using foaming agents is more environmentally friendly because it’s easier to recycle and uses less plastic than traditional manufacturing processes. Additionally, foaming agents can help reduce resin use.

Contact Phoenix Plastics to Request a Quote

If you’re looking for a reliable plastics additives manufacturer, contact Phoenix Plastics and request a quote. Our experienced staff can give you expert advice and ensure that you get the best possible product for your project. 


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Located in Conroe, TX, just north of Houston, Phoenix Plastics was founded in 1996 but our staff has more than 75 years of experience in the plastic industry. Our testing and processing takes place in-house, which allows Phoenix Plastics to maintain high quality standards. Phoenix Plastics is an ISO:9001 certified company.


5400 Jefferson Chemical Rd
Conroe, TX 77301

1.866.760.2311 / Fax: 936.760.2322

Location Hours:
Monday – Friday: 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM CST
Dock Hours: Monday – Friday: 9:00 AM – 3:30 PM CST


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