Plastic Sheeting Blog. Click on Home for all our product categories...

ASTM D 882: Unveiling the Strength of Thin Plastic Sheeting

Posted by The Plastic Sheeting Gurus! on Tue, Aug 22, 2023 @ 09:03

Find me on:

Plastic Sheeting Strength- How is it Measured?


In the world of materials testing and quality assurance, ASTM D 882 stands as a crucial standard, especially when it comes to assessing the strength and durability of thin plastic sheeting. This standard, formally known as "ASTM D 882 - Tensile Properties of Thin Plastic Sheeting," is a fundamental guideline that plays a significant role in various industries, from packaging to construction. In this blog, we will delve into what ASTM D 882 entails, why it matters, and how it is applied.

What is ASTM D 882?

ASTM D 882 is a standardized test method developed by ASTM International (formerly known as the American Society for Testing and Materials). Its primary purpose is to determine the tensile properties of thin plastic sheeting materials. Tensile properties refer to a material's behavior under tension or stretching forces. This test helps evaluate critical characteristics like tensile strength, elongation, and modulus, which are vital for understanding how a plastic sheet will perform in real-world applications.

How Does It Apply?

  1. Material Selection:

    • Manufacturers and product developers use ASTM D 882 to assess and compare different types of plastic sheeting materials. This helps in selecting the most suitable material for a specific application.
  2. Quality Control:

    • ASTM D 882 is often employed in quality control processes. Manufacturers use it to ensure that their plastic sheeting meets specific strength and durability requirements. This is essential in industries where product consistency is crucial.
  3. Product Development:

    • Researchers and engineers use the results of ASTM D 882 tests during the product development phase. This allows them to fine-tune material formulations and designs to meet performance goals.
  4. Safety and Compliance:

    • In industries where plastic sheeting is used for safety-critical applications (e.g., medical devices, aerospace, or construction), compliance with ASTM D 882 can be a regulatory requirement to ensure product safety.

The Test Procedure:

ASTM D 882 involves stretching a standardized specimen of the plastic sheet until it breaks. During the test, various properties are measured, including:

  • Tensile Strength: The maximum stress the material can withstand while being stretched.
  • Elongation: The percentage increase in length of the specimen before it breaks.
  • Modulus: The stiffness of the material, indicating how it responds to deformation.

Examples of Plastic Sheeting Products Often Tested According to ASTM D 882:

  1. Polyethylene Films: Polyethylene plastic sheeting is widely used in various industries, including packaging, agriculture, and construction. ASTM D 882 testing helps evaluate the tensile strength and elongation properties of these films.

  2. Polypropylene Films: Polypropylene films are used in applications where higher heat resistance and durability are required. ASTM D 882 testing ensures that these films meet strength and elongation requirements.

  3. PVC Films: PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) films are used for various purposes, including as protective covers, curtains, and geomembranes. ASTM D 882 testing assesses their tensile properties, helping to determine their suitability for specific applications.

  4. Geomembranes: Geomembranes made from materials like HDPE (High-Density Polyethylene) are used in environmental and civil engineering applications, such as landfill liners and pond liners. ASTM D 882 testing ensures their durability and tensile strength.

  5. Agricultural Films: Plastic films used in agriculture for purposes like mulching and greenhouse covers are subject to ASTM D 882 testing to ensure they can withstand the stresses associated with their applications.

  6. Construction Vapor Barriers: Plastic vapor barriers used in construction to control moisture and protect building materials are evaluated for tensile properties using ASTM D 882.

  7. Medical Films: Films used in the medical industry, such as those for sterile packaging or medical devices, may undergo ASTM D 882 testing to ensure their tensile strength meets regulatory standards.

  8. Packaging Films: Various types of plastic films used in packaging, such as shrink wrap and stretch film, are subject to ASTM D 882 testing to assess their mechanical properties.

  9. Aerospace Films: Films used in aerospace applications, such as protective coverings or insulation, may undergo ASTM D 882 testing to ensure their performance under stress.

  10. Automotive Films: Films used in automotive interiors or exteriors, including protective films and window tints, are tested to ensure they meet the necessary tensile strength requirements.


ASTM D 882 is more than just a technical standard; it's a crucial tool that helps us understand the strength and durability of thin plastic sheeting materials. Whether you're developing new products, ensuring quality, or complying with safety standards, this standard plays a vital role in ensuring that plastic sheeting performs as expected in various real-world applications. It's a testament to the importance of industry standards in maintaining quality, safety, and innovation in our everyday lives.

Many of Global Plastic Sheeting's Film are tested to ASTM D882. Just ask a representaive for information.

Click for pricing/ info

Resource page for Plastic Sheeting, Greenhouse Plastic, Fire Retardant Products, HDPE- LLDPE, Tapes  760 597 9298 Global plastic sheeting