Vacant properties, especially those that have been abandoned or remain unoccupied for a long time, typically use plywood boarding to cover windows and other openings. When glass panels are removed from residential and commercial premises that no longer have tenant or owner occupation for a variety of reasons including foreclosure by banks or long term building activities, plywood is often used in place of the missing glass. However, plywood is unattractive in appearance and a magnet for graffiti. Worse, being non-transparent, plywood boarded properties can attract vagrants and other unwelcome visitors.

In the USA where house foreclosures have seen a dramatic rise during and after the GFC (Global Financial Crisis), many financial institutions as well as governmental authorities have placed restrictions on the use of plywood, instead encouraging alternatives such as steel, painted plywood, window decals on plywood or see through materials such as acrylic or polycarbonate. These materials not only provide the required security, but also add visual appeal to the property.

Polycarbonate is one of the best alternatives for glass due to its superior toughness (250 times the strength of glass), UV resistance and clarity. The material can also be easily cut to size onsite using power tools, simplifying installation.

Allplastics Engineering cuts and supplies polycarbonate sheets from 1.5mm to 12.7mm in a variety of sheet sizes and variant coatings depending on the application.

More aesthetically pleasing than plywood or timber due to its clear properties, polycarbonate glazing will reduce the possibility of squatters entering vacant properties or abandoned buildings while also protecting communities by reducing crime rates and providing stability to neighbourhoods.

Being a tough material, polycarbonate cannot be cracked or shattered by rocks or bricks, protecting boarded properties against vandals and making it the ideal choice in environments requiring clear yet tough glazing.

Key features of polycarbonate sheets from Allplastics include outstanding toughness, good chemical resistance to solvents and cleaners, good electrical insulation, excellent weatherability; and ability to withstand temperatures from -40°C to +130°C.

Allplastics can supply polycarbonate sheets in standard sizes of 2440 x 1220mm and 2440 x 1830mm with 1 – 12mm thickness. Colours include Clear, Opal, Tints and Frost (made to order).

These polycarbonate sheets are ideal for balustrades, glazing, noise walls, boarding, and pergola roofing.

Image: Plywood boarded properties can attract vagrants and other unwelcome visitors