Nylon vs Polyester Slings: Which is Better?

When choosing the best web sling for the job, professionals often find themselves caught between nylon vs polyester slings. Nylon and polyester slings are both excellent choices if you’re concerned about grip, flexibility, shock absorption or delicate equipment. Truthfully, the choice between nylon and polyester slings wholly depends on the requirements of the project, its limitations and its priorities. In general, nylon slings are best suited for loads that need extra stretch potential, while polyester slings provide a secure grip while remaining softer than the alternatives.

The Difference Between Nylon and Polyester Slings

Choosing the right web sling for the job is not only important for effective use but also safety. Nylon and polyester slings both have their respective strengths and weaknesses that make them ideal for different applications.

Nylon Slings 

Between polyester and nylon, nylon slings are the most commonly used in the United States. Nylon slings possess the most stretch, making them the optimal choice for controlling loads that have a high risk for bouncing. This inevitably prevents snap-back from compromising the safety of others around. The material has an excellent resistance to oil, grease and caustic chemicals, ensuring load control and reliability regardless of these exposures. 

However, on the other hand, since nylon slings do possess a significant amount of stretch, they are best left for jobs with unlimited overhead space. While nylon slings are suited for a variety of demanding jobs, especially web slings held to ASME B30.9 standards, they should not be used around bleach or acids. According to OSHA guidelines, nylon slings cannot be used in extreme temperatures above 194-degrees Fahrenheit. They also have a tendency to absorb water and can conduct electricity. 

Polyester Slings

Polyester slings are softer and more malleable than their nylon counterparts. Polyester slings are ideal for handling more delicate equipment or completing jobs that require more gentle handling. While polyester slings do not have as much stretch as nylon, they provide decent load stability, are non-conductive and resist water absorption. The flexibility of polyester also allows the sling to cover a greater surface area–achieving a more secure grip. Unlike nylon, polyester slings can be exposed to bleaches and acids.

However, polyester slings cannot be used around caustic chemicals such as alkalies. While they are excellent for shock absorption, they are not as well suited for load control as nylon slings. And like nylon, OSHA regulations state that they are not suited for environments with extreme temperatures above 194-degrees Fahrenheit.

Which sling is right for you?

Nylon and polyester web slings have many advantages over chain alternatives. Not only do they offer superior grip and stretch, but they also offer resistance to different chemicals and acids. The differences between nylon and polyester slings mainly involve flexibility, texture, grip and resistances. Considering these factors should help you decide which material is best. Ultimately, the best sling depends on the requirements of the task at hand. Once you have selected the right sling for the job, make sure you have the proper sling protection for added security.  For more information on the pros and cons of nylon vs polyester slings, contact our specialists.