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Pros & Cons of Plastic vs Metal for Custom Enclosures

When it comes to engineering projects, even the smallest of details need to be considered to ensure that the design is successful. Not only are the dimensions of your new enclosure important, but the material you choose your enclosure to be made from are too.

The conditions the new enclosure will be required to endure are something that must be considered to ensure efficient and successful operation. And, this is where cost can come into the designers thoughts, especially when looking to use either plastic or metal. Both materials offer industry-leading durability, but there are some pros and cons to consider when determining which material and enclosure to choose.


Metal enclosures can be made from old shipping containers, reused enclosures, and brand new to your specific requirements. They can also be sound-proofed, insulated and powder-coated for protection from the elements and to meet regulations.

Benefits of Metal Enclosures:

  • Ability to withstands high temperature
  • Extremely durable
  • Resistant to rusting corrosion
  • UV resistant
  • Easy to paint and/or coat
  • Does not swell or deform
  • Scrap is recyclable and valuable
  • Blocks passage of radio waves (naturally RFI shielded)


Plastic enclosures are quicker and less expensive to manufacture than metal. They can be made in any colour you would like and do not require additional coverings to make them corrosion resistant, but they are not desirable for use in outdoor environments. 

Benefits of Plastic Enclosures

  • Non-conductive
  • Lightweight
  • Allows passage of radio frequency
  • Economical
  • Non-reactive in most environments
  • Non-Corrosive
  • Available in transparent/clear color option

Overall Conclusions

Both plastic and metal enclosures offer their own benefits depending on their intended use and your needs. Plus, as both materials are recyclable, we help you create enclosures that are a sustainable part of the lifecycle for your project.

If we had to choose a material for use in outdoor enclosures, we would go for metal, as there are so many benefits that specifically benefit projects that are outside. Here at Bradgate Containers, we have a great range of enclosures for power generation, plant, and UPS functions.

Find out more about how our enclosures can house your equipment onsite today!