Ford Motor's use of reclaimed nylon in cylinder head covers in its Escape, Fusion, Mustang, and F-150 vehicles saved 4.1 million lb of carpet from landfills in 2010. The automaker utilizes Wellman Engineering Resins' EcoLon material, a nylon comprised 100% of recycled carpet, in what it says is the first automotive product of its kind manufactured from post-consumer recycled plastic. The cylinder head covers are injection molded by Dana Holding Corp. for Ford's 3.0-liter Duratec engine (the Mustang cover is for a 5.0-liter engine).
In addition to their recycled content, Dana notes that the cylinder head covers green credentials are bolstered by the fact that they boost fuel economy due to weight savings of almost 20% when compared to aluminum die-cast cylinder-head covers. The head covers are part of a module-based sealing system Dana supplies to Ford, which also includes the engine cover, gaskets, fasteners, baffle/air-oil separator, and isolators. Dana developed, tested, and is manufacturing the cylinder head covers at its Composite Sealing Center in Paris, TN.
Wellman's EcoLon is offered in nylon 6 and 66, with more than 200 million lb sold since its introduction. Wellman has supplied its EcoLon resins for use in a variety of industries and applications, since 1996. The material has OEM approval within automotive from General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, and Volkswagen. Use in shrouds and fans goes back to the material's 1996 introduction. Wellman's proprietary manufacturing process is covered by two U.S. Patents, with the material's production is handled from Johnsonville, SC.