Paper and cardboard boxes get easily affected by different weather conditions if not kept in a controlled environment. When these cardboard custom mailer boxes come in contact with any hospitable environment i.e., allowing for bacterial and fungal growth, damage occurs to both the physical structure of the box and the adhesives used to hold it together. Ultimately, damaging the product quality and weakening the packaging itself.
Here's a brief guide on how the different weather conditions affect paper and cardboard in packaging.
High levels of humidity lead to the accumulation of internal moisture within the cardboard, thus, directly impacting the strength of these corrugated boxes and making them less durable. Wood fibers present in cardboard are responsible for it. Even after chemically treating these cardboard materials in production, the natural porosity of wood to absorb moisture when conducting transpiration is maintained. Therefore, making it absorb moisture at a high level.
When considering packaging concerning relative humidity (RH) and stacking strength of the cardboard, considering the environmental factors is important. With nearly 50% RH, the stacking strength of cardboard instantly drops to 80% of its original.
Cold and Dry Weather
As the temperature increases, cardboard is prone to losing its compression capabilities and strength. Yet, at the same time, the major concern with cardboard in cold and dry weather is its tendency to become more brittle and susceptible to cracks and tears.
The reason for it is that the extreme lack of moisture in cold and dry weather makes the cardboard act similarly to a sponge that has had all of its water removed. Therefore, becoming extremely rigid and brittle; harder to fold a box without the risk of it being torn or cracked.
Consistent exposure to direct sunlight not only damages the physical structure of the box but also results in the fading of colors. The designs and themes printed on the box become very dull and unpleasant to look at i.e., as if poor printing methods were used. This fading due to sunlight is known as ‘Photodegradation’.
Some dyes and hues used in packaging production are more prone to photodegradation than the rest, especially those which are organic. Where in modern times using organic hues is more sustainable and environmentally friendly, the downside of using these organic inks is that they allow for easier photodegradation.
Therefore, it can be concluded that storing your packaging boxes in a controlled environment remains advised at all times. Whether your boxes are present in storage or being shipped to the customer, always place these boxes where there is no direct sunlight entering; have controlled humidity conditions as well as the weather is not too dry and cold! You can also use various lamination films to further enhance the weather resistance of these cardboard boxes.