There’s very little sense investing in a high quality bespoke adhesive manufactured for a very specific purpose if you are not going to appropriately look after your investment. Nevertheless, this is exactly what happens in a huge array of cases every day, when businesses buy the adhesive products they need and summarily fail to look after them.
The simple fact of the matter is that even the most reputable 3M tape supplier or experienced custom adhesive manufacturer has no bearing over what happens once their products have been shipped and delivered. They can certainly ensure that comprehensive instructions and guidelines are provided with each product, but in reality, everybody knows how routinely such instructions go overlooked.
Which is precisely why it is so common for the capabilities of even the most outstanding custom adhesive to be severely compromised, naturally resulting in disgruntled buyers. Nevertheless, unless the simplest (and most obvious) of common sense rules are followed to the letter, it is a largely inevitable eventuality.
Here’s a quick rundown of six of the most common mistakes that can and will compromise the capabilities of your custom adhesive:
1 – Improper Temperatures
First of all, if it says in the instructions that the adhesive should be kept at a certain temperature, try to remember that this isn’t a recommendation printed simply for the sake of it. Every adhesive has a certain specific tolerance when it comes to temperatures, below and above which its capabilities and quality will be compromised. Roughly translated, if it’s too hot or too cold, it isn’t going to be able to do its job properly. So rather than simply assuming the storage area you’ve chosen is adequate, you might want to think a little more carefully about it.
2 – Ambient Humidity
The same also goes for ambient humidity – every adhesive across the board once again having its own unique tolerance. Ambient humidity can and often will have an effect on the quality and capabilities of the adhesive, each time the container is opened and its contents accessed. If the ambient humidity is too high, there’s a chance unwanted moisture may make its way into the mix and summarily do a number on your adhesive. So once again, it’s a case of thinking carefully about your choice of storage locations, as opposed to simply taking things for granted.
3 – Poorly Sealed Storage Containers
Still on the subject of storage containers, it is important to remember that there is a big difference between a closed container and a properly sealed container. If even the slightest bit of air and/or moisture can find its way into the container, you are inherently going to find yourself with a product that becomes to some extent tainted. If it says it needs to be kept in a tightly sealed container at all times, this is exactly what you should be doing. It’s also worth bearing in mind that poor quality storage containers may appear on the surface to provide an adequate seal, though in reality do anything but.
4 – Improper Use
A quick point but an important point nonetheless, if you use any given custom adhesive for a purpose for which it was not specifically created, you cannot expect it to deliver anything but subpar results. The whole point of picking up a custom adhesive in the first place is that you take a step away from one-size-fits-all generic adhesives, in favour of something built for purpose. So if you use it for anything other than this specific purpose, you invite and open the door to an inadequate result.
5 – Expired Products
As it is the case with most products, custom adhesives have a specified expiration date for a very good reason. Not only this, but there will also be a limited period for which the products can be used after its container is opened, before it will begin degrading in quality and capability. Nevertheless, expiration dates are routinely overlooked and ignored by so many people these days – most of whom react with surprise and even shock when the products in question are no longer up to the job.
6 – Mixing of Adhesives
Last but not least, mixing any two or more industrial adhesives together is an absolutely terrible idea for two very important reasons. First of all, rather than creating what you may expect to be some kind of ‘super-adhesive’ you will most likely end up with something that is completely and utterly useless. Not only this, but depending on the formulation of the products you combine, you may in the process mix any number of chemicals which could potentially produce poisonous gas. Suffice to say, if it states specifically in the instructions that you should not mix adhesive products together, it is for a very good reason.