simalfa What are water based adhesives?

What are water based adhesives?

Water based adhesvies are made from a combination of water, polymers, and additives. These adhesives cure when the water evaporates. Water based adhesives are ideal for porous or non-porous substrates, are environmentally friendly, and safe to use in your work environment.

Before we can go into details about waterbased adhesives, we first have to understand what they are. An adhesive, or glue, is a mixture, either in liquid or semi-liquid form that is used to bond one surface to another. Most adhesives are polymer based, and are made from either natural or synthetic sources. Adhesives are also specially formulated for specific applications, depending on the type of adhesive and the industry they are used in. At Simalfa, we have over 150+ different formulations designed for specific applications or requirements.

Types of water based adhesives

There are four main types of water based adhesives: vegetable glues, animal/protein glues, resin cements, and latex cements. Each of these different adhesives is uniquely formulated to serve their own specific purposes. Depending on which adhesive you’re using, the resulting bond will come out as either a solid resin or a more film-like finish, but all are solvent free, making them safe to use in close quarters and non-ventilated areas. Let’s take a closer look at each of these types of water based adhesives.

Latex Adhesives: Latex cements, another group of water based adhesives, are made from emulsified elastomers, or rubbers. Like polymer adhesives, latex adhesives must be applied to the substrate surface and allowed to dry into either a solid bond, or a more crude, flexible bond, depending on the formulation. These types of water based adhesives are primarily used for bonding stamps, envelopes, fabric, leather, and wood.

Resin/Polymer Adhesives: The primary components in resin water based adhesives are vinyl acetate, ethylene vinyl acetate, and acrylic resin emulsion polymers. Emulsions are mixes of liquids that cannot really be blended. To make these kinds of water based adhesives, water is mixed with the polymers polyvinyl acetate (PVA) and ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) to produce a bright white liquid mixture. Once the adhesive has been applied and allowed to dry, however, it produces a clear, flexible bond that is also used for paper, but also for wood and plastic.

Dextrin Adhesives: Vegetable adhesives are one of the more popular water based adhesives types. These adhesives contain a starch base and result in a more frail finish. For that reason they are commonly used for in the paper industry for such applications as bookbinding. These adhesives are known to be very durable when used with material like paper, but their vegetable base does make them more susceptible to breakdown when exposed to water.

Caesin Adhesives: Animal, or protein adhesives are derived from either animal organs that are processed specifically for the purpose of making hot glue, or from proteins found in animal milk, which is used to make casein glue. While hot animal glue is primarily for quick-fix/quick-set applications, casein glue, which is more resistant to water and moisture, is used primarily in the beer and wine bottling industry.

At Simalfa, we generally formulate latex, resin, and/or polymer adhesives. We design and manufacture water based adhesives that have industry leading performance, are environmentally friendly, and always solvent free.