What Are Biodegradable BBs?

Published on
January 9, 2022

Biodegradable BBs are made of materials that will decompose over time. This contrasts with typical BBs, which are made of materials that will not decompose.

Biodegradable BBs are what some people like to call green BBs. They break down over time, which is what makes them eco-friendly.

If you care about the environment after your fun, this article breaks down (no pun intended) what biodegradable BBs are and how you can use them.

Are Biodegradable BBs Bad For Your Gun?

No, biodegradable BBs will not damage or break your airsoft gun.

Some airsoft players say that biodegradable BBs can be harder on your gun because they may not lubricate as well as regular BBs.

However, many airsoft enthusiasts believe that the difference between the two types of BBs is negligible at best.

From our personal experience, we've never had performance issues with using biodegradable BBs.

We've seen no difference in:

  • Range.
  • Rifle performance.
  • Barrel maintenance.
  • Precision.

The only noticeable difference is that this type of BB is heavily lubricated, and they have a distinct smell.

Almost like silicone or glue.

What Are Biodegradable BBs Made Out Of?

Biodegradable BBs are made out of polylactic acid or polylactide (PLA). PLA is a plastic constructed from natural resources and renewable materials.

The biodegradable materials and various types of resin used for these pellets are often found in agriculture.

These materials include:

  • Corn (explains the smell).
  • Certain starches.

Are Biodegradable BBs Actually Biodegradable?

Yes, the material that biodegradable BBs are made out of can break down over time.

The rate at which they decompose will depend on several factors:

  • The climate (temperature and humidity).
  • How wet the environment is.
  • What type of soil it's in contact with.

Either way, bio BBs will break down faster than the traditional plastic non-biodegradable plastic BBs, which can take years (even tens of years) to fall apart.

How Long Does It Take For Biodegradable BBs To Degrade?

Biodegradable BBs can start to degrade within 6 to 8 months in humid or damp conditions.

The time it takes for biodegradable BBs to decompose will vary depending on the environmental conditions.

The humidity and the dampness are the leading causes.

The UK offers almost perfect conditions for biodegradable BBs to break down. We get three months of hot sun but nine months of rain and general wetness.

I'd imagine in hotter climates; the humidity would likely influence the degradation rate.

Are Biodegradable BBs Toxic?

Biodegradable BBs are not toxic to humans or other living organisms.

They're made from materials that will decompose over time, and they won't harm the environment when used correctly.

Still, we wouldn't recommend swallowing them.

Are Biogradable BBs Worth It?

As long as your airsoft gun is up to the task, biodegradable BBs are worth it.

They're better for the environment, and they won't damage your gun as regular plastic BBs might.

You can always use them more than once, which makes them far less wasteful in the long run, too.

They can cost more than standard plastic BBss (which is the only potential downside).

But, if you play airsoft regularly, this might be worth it to have less impact on the environment.

Keeping your gun and the world, a happier place to be!

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