Ford's use of the recycled material will keep 4.1 million pounds of carpet from landfills, the equivalent of nearly 154 football fields.
During 2010, Ford Motor Company began using EcoLon material, a nylon resin made from 100 percent recycled carpet cylinder head covers on engines in some models. The cover is the first automotive product of its kind manufactured from post-consumer recycled nylon and is used in Ford Escape, Fusion, Mustang and F-150.
Last year, use of the material amounted to recycling more than 985,000 yards of carpet and reducing the consumption of more than 430,000 gallons of oil.
"We didn't have to make compromises for this application," said Roy Ford, Ford engine sealing supervisor. "With a fixed raw material cost that delivers cost savings compared to oil, along with the green benefit, this application adds to the ways Ford is minimizing our impact on the environment."
To make the EcoLon material, used nylon carpeting is ground into fiber and recaptures the material through a patented, proprietary process. The resulting product is a high-quality nylon resin, which another company then uses to mold into cylinder head covers through its injection-molding process.
Over the past several years Ford has made a significant effort to increase its use of nonmetal recycled and bio-based materials, including soy foam seat cushions, recycled resins for underbody systems, recycled yarns on seat covers and natural-fiber plastic for interior components.