Plastic comes in many types, shapes and sizes. Therefore, it’s important to choose the right plastic sealant for the material you’re working with. Our guide will explain about the different liquid sealants for plastics, and point you to the right products for multiple jobs.
Plastic sealants: Why one size doesn’t fit all
There are many different kinds of plastics in the world. Plastics make up a majority of everyday objects like furniture, kitchen supplies, electronic parts, construction material, toys, clothes, jewelry and much more. When plastic breaks, it’s easy to throw it away. However, everyday objects are easily repaired with the right liquid sealant for plastic.
Since all plastics are not created equally, it’s important to know what type you’re working with, so you choose the right type of plastic sealant. Here are the 7 main types of plastic:
- Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
- Polypropylene (PP)
- Polyethylene (PE)
- Polycarbonate (PC)
- Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene (ABS)
- Polyethylene Terephthalate (PETE or PET)
- Acrylic or Polymethyl Methacrylate (PMMA)
Always check the manufacturer’s instructions for compatibility when choosing a plastic sealant or adhesive.
Types of plastic sealants and adhesives
There are several types of bonding systems that work with a variety of plastics, here’s a look at what they are, and the differences between them.
Silicone glue for plastic
Silicone sealants come in cartridges that require a caulking gun to administer. This type of plastic sealant is ideal for construction projects like installing windows, trim, plumbing, or other heavy-duty projects and also for underwater use, if claimed in the respective product’s technical documentation.
Two-part plastic adhesives and epoxies come in tubes with plungers. These types of sealants require you to either mix the two properties before application, or prime the surface before applying the adhesive. These types of plastic adhesives are rigid, strong, and designed to adhere to hard-to-bond surfaces like PP and PE plastics.
Liquid sealants for plastics
Some plastic sealants come in single tubes, and require one step application. These plastic sealants provide a flexible seal and are intended for use with softer plastics like pool floats, umbrellas, and camping gear.
Application techniques, delivery systems, and cure times vary depending on the type of sealant or adhesive you’re using. See individual package instructions for details.
The best plastic sealant for the job
Given the variety of plastics that exist, the type of sealant you need greatly depends on the job you’re doing. Here are examples of projects, and the matching plastic sealant.
Waterproof sealants for plastic
For fixing shoes, or minor plumbing leaks, turn to Loctite Clear Silicone Waterproof Sealant. This silicone sealant is perfect for bonding ABS plastics, rubbers, and more. As an added bonus, it’s flexible, gap filling, temperature-resistant, and acts as a sealant and adhesive.
For bigger jobs that require watertight adhesion to a number of different plastics and other materials, reach for Loctite PL Marine Fast Cure Adhesive Sealant. This waterproof sealant is ideal for boats and other underwater applications. It can be used to seal out both salt water and fresh water, keeps a watertight and flexible bond, and will not shrink when cured.
Professional grade plastic sealant
The strongest and most versatile sealant is Loctite PL Heavy Duty Sealant. This multipurpose product is flexible offering 5x stretch and will bond to most surfaces including plastic
Multifunctional plastic adhesives
For difficult to bond plastics (like PP and PE) reach for Loctite Plastics Bonding System. This two-part system also bonds to PVC, requires no mixing, and sets in seconds.
For a ridged, high strength bond that is impact-resistant and will not shrink, reach for Loctite Plastic Bonder. This acrylic epoxy can be used with most plastics, but shines with PC, ABS, PVC, and much more.