There are times when silicone is a better option than other kinds of adhesives. Many people like using silicone for their DIY projects because it’s strong, waterproof, and, most of all, flexible. It works well with many materials, but will silicone stick to plastic?
Silicone will stick to plastic. But since different silicone composites have different uses, you must find the right kind and brand of silicone to get the best results. For example, invest in %100 waterproof models for water-exposed plastics, and a heat-proof formula to apply outdoors.
The rest of the article will guide you on how to use silicone to stick to plastic.
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Can You Use Silicone And Plastic Together?
Silicone is a good adhesive for plastic, which is why it’s often used in home repairs. Most importantly, it’s strong, waterproof, and flexible. There are times when silicone is favored over hot glue, like when you want to bond a joint that requires flexibility.
Two types of silicone commonly used for household fixes include:
- Silicone sealants
- Silicone caulks
You may notice that the two terms are often used interchangeably, but have different uses. For example, although both silicone sealants and caulks are used to fill in cracks or gaps, they’re different in terms of elasticity.
Silicone caulking produces harder results than silicone sealing when dry. So, you may want to go for silicone sealants instead of caulks if you want the surfaces you fix to be flexible. Since silicone sealants are flexible, they can tolerate areas prone to expansion and contraction. In addition, silicone sealants will be excellent for areas highly exposed to severe weather conditions.
When To Use Silicone Sealants or Caulks
Different situations will call for different silicones. For example, you want to use a silicone sealant for automobile applications, like windshields, wipers, or mirrors, to ensure that they can withstand rain, snow, or heat. Silicone sealants can also be applied to electrical appliances.
Silicone caulking is commonly used for plumbing fixtures. For example, you can use silicone caulks to fix your bathtub, sink, toilets, or showers because the bond it creates is strong and water-resistant. Silicone caulking is also great for closing gaps around your doors or windows to ensure your home is protected from the outside elements.
Common places that may require silicone caulk:
- Doors and windows
- Bathtubs, kitchen sinks, faucets, and showers
- Air vents and ducts
- Electric cables
An example of a good silicone sealant is the CT-1 silicone sealant, which is excellent when dealing with confined spaces. CT-1 will work well with many surface types, even the surface of plastic components. If you have a leaking plastic gutter, you can apply a silicone sealant like CT-1 to fix the leakage—it’ll bond even on wet surfaces.
How Long Does Silicone Take To Cure on Plastic?
After applying silicone to plastic, you want to wait for it to cure. To get the best results, you must wait at least 24 hours for the silicone to bond. It could take several days for the silicone to fully cure, especially if there are multiple coats.
What Silicone Brands To Use
There are many silicone brands out there, but you must choose the product that best suits your needs. The brand you choose may vary due to your isse, and what surface you want to cover. Most importantly, the silicone sealant/caulk you use must stick well to the plastic surfaces that you’re trying to bond and withstand different conditions, like high temperatures or high moisture.
3 best silicones for plastic found on Amazon:
- Loctite 100% Silicone: It can withstand areas with extreme temperatures of -65°F to 300°F and dry 2 hours after its application. Great for plumbing and insulation, even on toys.
- Gorilla 100% Silicone Clear: Shrink/crack-proof, 100% waterproof, and won’t yellow over time. Suitable for most plastics, including PVC, except polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).
- CT-1 Sealant: Made in Britain, this silicone sealant is excellent for outdoor uses, such as boat maintenance or emergency repairs. Works well in dry and wet conditions and can bond well with different materials, including plastic.
Removing Silicone From Plastic
Silicone is fantastic, but after years of use, it wears down. Once the silicone deteriorates, it’s no longer strong; plus, it doesn’t look good. So, you’ll want to remove and replace it.
Silicone is tough, making you assume that removing it is difficult. You’re right because removing silicone from plastic isn’t as easy as others. You don’t want to risk damaging your plastic when peeling off the silicone.
You can use a silicone sealant remover to rub off the silicone from the plastic. You’ll also want to have a scraping tool to separate as much silicone as possible. Follow the steps below to remove silicone from plastic:
- Remove as much silicone sealant as possible from the plastic using a scraping tool.
- Apply a silicone sealant remover suitable for the plastic to the surface you want to clear using a tube or a sealant gun.
- After applying the silicone remover, leave it for a couple of hours.
- The silicone will swell, so when this happens, gently scrape it off the plastic.
- Wipe the plastic surface clean.
Silicone will stick to plastic. Some of the best silicone sealants/caulks for plastic are the Loctite 100% Silicone, Gorilla 100% Silicone Clear, and CT-1 Sealant. Use silicone sealants/caulks to fill in cracks, leaks, or gaps.
Of course, there are many other excellent silicone options you can use to suit your needs. However, eventually, silicone will wear out, so you want to remove it carefully to avoid damaging the plastic when this happens. To do that, use a silicone remover that’s suitable for your plastic.