Environmental conditions – particularly weather – can significantly impact the performance of tape during any installation and afterwards. Temperature is one of two primary consideration factors:
- Application temperature – The conditions when tape is applied, or application temperature, can affect the adhesion of a tape based on whether or not it is too hot or too cold. Adhesion systems are thermoelastic, meaning they have properties of both a solid and liquid. If the temperature is too high, the adhesive is likely to take a liquid-like property and could flow like a liquid, not making a strong bond with the surface. If it is too cold, an adhesive may become brittle and glass-like, or solid and lose its ability to adhere to a surface.
- Service temperature – The conditions after tape is applied, or service temperature, can also impact tape’s performance. Rigorous thermal cycling – going from hot to cold and back to hot, and vice versa, will put the adhesive system under stress. The more severe the thermal cycling, the harder it is on the tape’s adhesive system.
The second primary consideration factor is humidity. This can affect tape’s adhesion. High humidity, for example, could result in a thin layer of moisture on the surface you are trying to stick to, which weakens the tape’s ability to adhere. To prevent this from happening, ensure that surfaces in need of HVAC tape are clean and dry before application.
Choosing the right tape for the job is critical for your HVAC system. All tapes are not created equal, so make sure you know the conditions of your jobsite before you choose a tape so that you can ensure full system closure.