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Adhesives Technical Information

Shop All Adhesives
Basics of...Adhesives

Use this chart as a handy reference to determine the proper adhesive for your application. As it was compiled from various manufacturer's recommendations, this chart contains only the names of the types of adhesives and no specific brand names.

Which Adhesive Is Best?

Type Advantages Disadvantages
Anaerobics
  • Moderately priced
  • High strength on some substrates
  • Flexibility to form tough bonds
  • Rapid cure at room temperature
  • Good solvent and temperature resistance
  • Versatile
  • Various Viscosities
  • Non-toxic
  • Single component
  • Infinite pot life
  • No mixing required
  • Dispenses easily from package
  • Easily automated
  • Limited gap cure
  • Not advised for some plastics or rubber substrates
  • Will not cure where air contacts adhesive (wet fillets)
  • Requires primer for many materials
  • 300° to 400°F Temperature limitation
Cyanoacrylates
  • Rapid cure at room temperature
  • Excellent adhesion to rubber or plastics
  • Good adhesion to metal
  • High tensile stdength
  • No mixing required
  • Infinite pot life
  • Dispenses easily
  • Higher priced
  • Limited gap cure
  • Poor durability on some surfaces
  • Low solvent resistance
  • Low temperature resistance
  • Bonds to skin
  • Toxicity
Epoxies
  • Usually low priced
  • Good gap filling capabilities
  • High strength
  • Versatile
  • Good temperature resistance
  • Easily dispensed
  • Wide range of formulations
  • Exothermic reaction creates thinning of adhesive during cycles
  • Two components, mixing required
  • Exact proportions needed for optimal strength
  • Toxicity
  • Low pot life
  • Waste
  • Single component usually requires refrigeration and heat cure
Hot Melts
  • Low price
  • Good gap filling capabilities
  • Rigid to flexible bonds available
  • Fast setting
  • Usually low strength
  • Poor wetting
  • Low heat resistance, degrades as heat rises
  • Usually low solvent resistance
  • Stringy and messy
  • Parts must be mated before adhesive cools
  • Poor on part life
  • Requires special dispensing equipment
  • Difficult to automate
Methacrylates
  • Usually low to moderately priced
  • Good gap cure
  • Good impact resistance and flexibility
  • Good peel and shear strength
  • Medium to fast cure
  • Wide range of formulations
  • Tolerant of dirty surfaces
  • Usually requires dispensing equipment
  • Low heat tolerance, 180° to 250°F
  • Limited pot life
  • Two component products require mixing
  • Some odor problems
  • Flammable
Silicones
  • Moderately priced
  • Good gap filling capabilities
  • Good for bonding glass to most other substrates
  • Easily applied from package
  • Flexible
  • Good water resistance
  • Various viscosities and colors
  • Excellent temperature resistance, 400° to 500°F
  • Excellent sealant for low stress applications
  • Low strength
  • Limited solvent resistance
  • Too flexible for structural loads
  • Expensive to automate
  • Most need moisture to cure
  • Corrosivity
  • Some odor when curing
  • Hard to clean
  • Slow curing
  • One component, short shelf life
Urethanes
  • Moderately priced
  • Excellent toughness and flexibility
  • Good flexibility at low temperatures
  • Excellent adhesion to a wide range of materials
  • Varying cure time
  • One or two component, room or oven cure available
  • Poor temperature resistance
  • Sensitive to moisture in cured and uncured state
  • May undergo reversion with heat and moisture
  • Two component mixing or one component toxicity
  • Short pot life
  • Requires special equipment to mix and dispense