Plastic Wrap Strength

By: Isaac Starlin

Purpose Statement:

The purpose of this experiment is to see which brand of plastic wrap is the strongest and holds the most weight. I became interested in this experiment because I want to know which type of plastic wrap is best to use if I want to wrap something up. The information gained from this experiment will help others by telling them which plastic wrap is the strongest, and then I will know which is the best brand to buy.


Plastic wrap is known for protecting and preserving food due to its ability to stay flexible at very low temperatures and offers strong tear resistance. It is used as a convenience because it is flexible, light, cost-effective, transparent, tough and safe. These things along with its ability to protect against contamination, and to be an oxygen and water barrier help to prevent unnecessary waste and ensure food lasts longer.

Plastic wrap was originally made of PVC (Polyvinylidene Chloride) but in recent years companies have started going to LDPE (Low-Density Polyethylene). This change was made because it is considered safer for the body. The downfall of the newer version is that it is not as clingy as the original. Plastic wrap is made from polymers or long chains of carbon atoms linked together. The carbon atoms are held together with covalent bonds and these bonds are very strong. It takes a lot of energy to break a polymer. Plastic wrap is made of millions of inter-molecular interactions, each one is weak but when they are put together they are very strong.


My hypothesis is the more expensive plastic wrap should be the strongest. I base my hypothesis on the fact that if it costs more it should be stronger.


glass bowl



3 types of plastic wrap


IV: Type of Plastic Wrap

DV: Amount of Weight the Plastic Wrap can hold

CV: Glass Bowl, Size of the Piece of Plastic Wrap


  1. Gather Materials.

  2. Fold and place towel in bottom of bowl.

  3. Measure 18 inches of plastic wrap and rip out of the box.

  4. Place plastic wrap on top of the bowl.

  5. Place a weight on top of the plastic wrap.

  6. Continue to place weights on top of the plastic wrap until the plastic wrap breaks.

  7. Record amount of weight that caused the plastic wrap to break.

  8. Repeat steps 2-7 two more times.

  9. Repeat steps 2-8 for each of the other types of plastic wrap.

Observations Log/Data:

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The original purpose of this experiment was to see which brand of plastic wrap is the strongest and holds the most weight. The results of the experiment were that the Shurfine brand of paper towels held the most weight consistently.
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My hypothesis was the more expensive plastic wrap should be the strongest. The results indicate that this hypothesis should be considered incorrect. Based on the results of this experiment I would recommend buying the Shurfine Plastic Wrap because it was consistently the strongest. If I were to conduct this science fair project again I would use heavier weights.


Mom & Dad

Mrs. Soden

Mrs. Hauptmann

Mrs. Cunningham