Choosing the Right Adhesive for a Job

With so many types available in the market, selecting an adhesive that will be most suitable for the task you have in mind can be quite daunting. There are quite a number of issues that you will be obligated to consider if the right choice is to be made.

The Type of Material and Surfaces You Are Working With

There is an appropriate adhesive for virtually any material. For metals, the bonding agents most commonly used include urethane, acrylic, and epoxy adhesives. All these individual adhesive types are available in varying strengths and setting times. These adhesives can also be used to bond metals and plastics.

Wood is normally bonded together using carpenter’s glue otherwise known as wood glue. To ensure that the adhesive serves its purpose as desired, the wood needs to be moisture-free. In addition one has to place the pieces as accurately as possible the first time round as this has a considerable impact on the bond strength. The curing time also needs to be sufficient and not rushed.

Epoxy adhesives are advised for fiberglass material repairs in addition to a heat source and fiberglass mat. Precaution is of the essence here as this repair process produces quite toxic fumes.

The nature of the surfaces to be bonded also matters with porous and non-porous surfaces responding differently to adhesives.

The Drying Speed

How fast you want the bond to be created is quite an important determinant of the type of adhesive to purchase. The fastest bonding adhesives are superglue and hot glue. Water-based contact cement sets immediately and takes roughly half an hour to dry. White glue and carpenter’s glue take a number of hours to dry. You will however need to wait for a full day before a silicone based adhesive dries completely.

Waterproof Abilities and Heat Resistance Properties

To create bonds that need to be waterproof you can select from a number of adhesive options. Your choices include water-based contact cement, silicone based adhesives, two-part epoxies, or superglue. Most wood adhesives don’t take too well to even relatively low amounts of moisture.

In terms of heat resistance abilities the aforementioned types of adhesives will also be most effective.

The Ease of Cleaning Up

Different adhesives offer varying degrees of cleaning ease, a factor that is dependent on their individual constitution.

Adhesives that can be easily cleaned up using water alone include wood glue and white glue, silicone sealers, and water-based contact cements.

Other adhesives glues require the use of a solvent like acetone to clean up. In this category we have non-water based silicone adhesives, two-part epoxies, and superglue.

The Environment in Which the Adhesive will be Used

This is by all means a very important consideration when selecting an adhesive. While most of the common adhesives will work perfectly indoors the same can’t be said of their performance outdoors. This is of course due to environmental factors like humidity, moisture, and varying temperatures. It therefore requires you to buy wisely with the type and location of job being the main determining factors of your purchase.