Silicone vs. Acrylic PSA

Some of our customers ask for silicone tape on the back of their silicone part when really an acrylic tape could work just fine. The reason that most customers callout silicone tape on their parts is because its a silicone rubber, sponge or foam part. Oftentimes our customer has been given the impression that only silicone tape will stick to silicone parts. However, well is general this is true that silicone PSA is for silicone parts, some fabricators such as NEDC have methods to ensure the acrylic adhesive does stick to most silicone rubber parts. Since most silicone PSAs and acrylic PSAs can stick to silicone gaskets, the question becomes what are the differences?

silicone rubber gaskets

gaskets with silicone and acrylic PSA


Silicone PSA

Silicone Pressure Sensitive Adhesive has some characteristics that define it:

-Surface Energy

As mentioned above, while some fabricators have methods to ensure acrylic PSAs stick to silicone rubber parts, silicone PSAs are oftentimes employed for lower surface energy substrates

-Temperature Range

Silicone Tape has a very wide temperature range. Most tapes range from -100° to 500° F. Oftentimes this is a good reason to choose a silicone tape.

-Shelf Life

Silicone tape oftentimes has a lower shelf life than its acrylic counterparts. This is something to be cautious of when asking for a silicone tape.

-Price

One thing to be cautious of is the temperature range that comes with silicone PSA also carries a price tag. In general, silicone PSAs are more costly than their acrylic counterparts.

Acrylic PSA

Acrylic Pressure Sensitive Adhesive has some characteristics that make it remarkable:

-Adhesion

Acrylic PSAs have a very large bandwidth of adhesion values compared to their silicone counterparts. It’s not uncommon to look at two different datasheets, and see one with a 30 oz/in adhesion, and one with 150 oz/in.

-Shelf Life

In general, acrylic PSAs have very robust shelf lives. Some tapes from the factory carry up to a 24 month shelf life but function well past that date.

Availability

Acrylic PSAs for NEDC are much more widely available compared to silicone PSAs. For example, NEDC has several different types of acrylic PSAs available compared to limited availability on silicone tapes.

These are some of the big differences between acrylic and silicone PSA, there are others, but these are some of the bigger ones. NEDC commonly die-cuts or waterjet cuts silicone rubber gaskets. For more information on silicone or acrylic tape please contact sales@nedc.com.

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