What is the difference between acrylic and silicone adhesive tape?
The adhesive is a very simple yet very important thing. If we look for its definition, we will get this. “Any substance that is capable of holding materials together in a functional manner by a surface attachment that resists separation.”
No matter how easy and simple the work or definition of the adhesive is. One thing that is not easy to understand about adhesive is its usage. In the 21st century, it is almost impossible to know to what extent the adhesive has impacted humans.
We know how important adhesives is in our life. Many instances in history show how adhesive has helped in shaping the modern-day world.
Among the numerous ways adhesives have impacted us, one of the ways is through adhesive tape. If we dive into the history of tape then we will find out how important tape is to us. The very first type of tape was masking tape then we found band-aids and duct tape.
These days we can find different kinds of tapes that are available in the market. There are different kinds of tapes in terms of materials and adhesives used in manufacturing different types of tapes.
Out of which two types of adhesive tapes are very popular. We are talking about acrylic and silicone adhesive tape. These two are often confused due to their similar characteristics.
Here, we will talk about the difference between acrylic and silicon adhesive tape and their differences.
What is the acrylic adhesive tape?
The acrylic adhesive tape is made of two things. One is the backing material like BOPP and the second part is acrylic adhesive. A good example would be BOPP tape which is also known as acrylic tape.
The acrylic adhesives are made from acrylic polymers which are made from the monomers like 2-ethyl hexyl acrylate, n-butyl acrylate, acrylic acid etc with different processes.
What is silicone adhesive Tape?
A silicone adhesive has two components a flexible backing material and an adhesive which have silicone in it.
A silicone adhesive is made from silicon oxide which is found in the sand of quartz. Then this silicon compound is made with the help of different processes.
Which is better Acrylic adhesive tape or Silicone adhesive tape?
In the above sections, we have talked about the two types of adhesive tape which are Acrylic adhesive tape and silicone adhesive tape.
In this section, we will talk about the differences between their characteristics. We have taken all the possible abilities of these two tapes so that we can get a detailed comparison between them.
One of the most important features of an adhesive tape is its tack or stickiness. This is one of the first things that comes to our mind when we compare two different tapes. Stickiness or tack is the ability to quickly bond with another surface. When we compare tackiness or stickiness, we see how quickly and how strongly a tape sticks to the surface.
Now we will begin our comparison between the two. Acrylic tapes are a good choice when it is compared to normal rubber adhesive tape. When compared with silicone tape, it provides moderate stickiness.
The factor that impacts this property is temperature. We will talk about this factor in the next point.
Temperature is one of the biggest factors that affect the stickiness of a tape. Different types of tape perform differently when exposed to various factors. When we talk about acrylic tape, gives better results compared to silicon tape in mid-ranged temperature.
When the acrylic tape is exposed to a mid-range temperature which starts from 0 degrees to 100 degrees Celsius it gives better adhesion when compared to the silicon tape.
Silicon tape is a better choice when you have to deal with colder temperature ranges starting from 0 to -73 degree Celsius.
- Solvent resistant
Solvent resistance is defined as the resistance that a material shows when it comes in contact with a chemical or solvent. Chemicals such as harsh acids and strong bases and solvents like acetone, ethanol, methanol etc can dissolve the materials in their solution.
In this comparison, we will find that both acrylic tape and silicon tape offer similar resistance to solvents.
We all are well aware of this factor. Before we start comparing the two tapes there is one thing that we all should know and that is water affects those tapes which have water-based adhesives. Adhesive tapes like Acrylic and silicon are water-resistant as they do not have a water-based adhesive base.
Acrylic adhesives have acrylic polymers while silicon adhesives have silica in their formulation.
Anti-ageing in the tape is defined in terms of fading colours, yellowness and many more things. All of these things are the result of constant sun exposure. As UV rays are responsible for the fading of the tape and reduce the stickiness of many tapes.
When we talk about the UV exposure on Acrylic tape then we will find that UV rays have next to no effect on them. They do not have any effect on their performance.
When we talk about silicone adhesive tape, then we might get varied results when it comes to UV resistance, they are seen to show some loss in their adhesive ability and colour retention.
- Cost of production
The cost to produce a tape from scratch. In this comparison, we will find a clear winner with acrylic adhesive tape as the production cost of this tape is far lower than Silicon Adhesive tape.
This is the reason behind the popular and wide usage of Acrylic tape in packaging and other industry.
- Shelf life
The shelf life of a product is the amount of deterioration that a product goes through when kept without usage for a long time.
When it comes to comparing acrylic tapes with silicon tape. Acrylic tapes perform better than silicon tapes in terms of shelf life. These acrylic tapes have a best-before usage for 24 months while that may not be the case for silicon adhesive tapes as they have a significance shorter shelf life.
- Residual glue
Residual glue is the amount of adhesive that is left behind after we remove the tape.
Both Acrylic and silicon perform similarly in terms of leaving residual glue. This makes them equal at this point.
Which tape is better?
Here, in this article, we have talked about the differences between Acrylic and silicone adhesive tape. At the beginning of this article, we have learnt about what acrylic and silicone adhesive tape is. The compositional difference between them.
After that, we picked various factors to check their differences and now we have reached the end of this article.
We can not say that one tape is better than another on all the terms. As we can see that the two tapes that we were comparing had their strength and weaknesses, so it is best to choose according to our needs and requirements.
If you like to get a more specific comparison between acrylic/ BOPP tape and other types of adhesive tape available in the market you can read this blog which is about their differences.
Suman Mandal has been in the packaging industry for a long time. She is passionate about the innovative ways this industry comes up with. Currently, she is writing for To The Packaging about various packaging solutions.