I’m not one to put my personal opinions out there too much. Particularly when it comes to my customers, it is not my opinion that will be of any use to them but my knowledge and expertise. But this opinion will not come as a shock to anyone so I will just put it out there. I. Hate. Vinyl. Okay, hate is a strong word and I do not completely hate it. As the saying goes, I like my music vinyl and my windows wood. Other than it’s contribution to music, I find vinyl repugnant.
(Even so many people may not know this fun fact: the earliest records were actually made of Shellac, one of my favorite building materials. You could actually break pieces off, dissolve them in some alcohol, and put a nice finish on some furniture. No surprise this shift from a sustainable and healthy option to harmful and carcinogenic happened in the 1940’s. Right around the time most everything in the building industry and consumer products in general took the same quality and environmental impact nosedive.)
It comes as no surprise to anyone considering our line of business that I loathe vinyl windows. But are windows the only place that we find vinyl? Nope. I think most people don’t realize the full name of vinyl: Polyvinyl Chloride or PVC. Yup, it was right there all along. PVC and vinyl are one and the same.
We’ve become accustomed to the PVC pipes in our buildings. Apparently we don’t mind hearing the splash of water every time someone flushes a toilet. Though anyone that has tried to sleep in the bottom floor of a home with PVC pipe may feel differently. If you are building a home with bedrooms on the first floor, please do them a favor and run them some blissfully silent cast iron.
Now we are seeing PVC all over the exteriors of our homes. Not only that, it is being pitched as a, gulp, “Green” option. So I’m just going to come out and say it: There is nothing Green about vinyl. Ever. It is one of the most harmful products ever created and if the producers and users of the material bore the full cost to society of it, the price would be worse than prohibitive. Check out our next post, Five Reason to Avoid PVC