What are the Different Types of Liquid Adhesive?

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  • Written By: Tess C. Taylor
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 06 February 2020
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There are many different types of liquid adhesive products available for personal and industrial use. Adhesive products are used by consumers for a variety of purposes, from simple household use, to hobbies, repairs and auto care. In addition, many manufacturers and factories depend on liquid adhesives in producing commercial products.

The most commonly used liquid adhesive products are of the glue variety. Glues, which are most often water-based, can also contain resins or animal and food proteins and come in multiple formulas and thicknesses. Glue can range from simple craft and paper glue such as white non-toxic paste used by children for arts and crafts, to higher wood bonding and construction quality glues like fast-drying and weight bearing carpenter’s glue and furniture glue.

Another type of liquid adhesive is the heat or thermal adhesive. This commercial type adhesive works by bringing a waxy or hotmelt substance to a high level of heat which causes it to liquefy. Once this occurs, pressure is applied by a special set of machinery which then bonds products such as sheet metals, plastics, canvas fabrics and other commercial grade materials together.


Epoxies are another form of low-cost liquid adhesive that consist of a base resin and a hardening substance. The base resin may be made up of a high viscosity paste and the hardening substance is most often another thicker paste that has a lower viscosity. When mixed together, the epoxy then bonds effectively to other surfaces using a chemical reaction. This bond is very long-lasting and is valued by crafters and hobbyists.

No-mix liquid adhesives are readily available for a variety of purposes. Widely valued for convenience, no-mix adhesives are generally packaged in easy-to-use packaging and can be found in retail, home improvement, craft stores and commercial product companies. No-mix adhesives provide the same strength as other products that must be mixed in order for bonding to occur, with fewer steps and less mess.

Urethane or polyurethane liquid adhesive and sealants are valued for commercial use due to their shelf-stable and waterproof qualities. Industries such as automobile, boat and aerospace use this form of liquid adhesive to ensure all vehicles are safe for use by humans. In addition, polyurethane adhesive is used by the construction, transportation, military and marine industries to provide reliable, waterproof seals on all equipment and vehicles.


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