A sealant is a viscous mass or paste designed for waterproofing and sealing various surfaces. It is almost impossible to carry out repair, finishing, roofing and other types of construction work without a sealant. After applying this building material, novice craftsmen are usually interested in how long it takes to dry.
There are several types of sealants, each of them has its own scope and characteristics.
- For example, acrylic sealant is used for interior work. It can be used for wood, drywall, but it does not tolerate moisture very well and is not recommended for coatings exposed to high temperatures.
- Silicone sealant is used to bond any construction surface, including metal or plastic. It can withstand different temperature conditions.
- The bituminous version is used for the repair of roofs, slate and tiles; it can be used in damp rooms. Suitable for sealing the drainage system. Vibration damping properties are lost at very low temperatures.
- Polyurethane is used for outdoor use and is not affected by weather conditions.
Drying types and times
All of the above sutures have different hardening times, which depend on various factors.
Initial polymerization will occur 7-30 minutes after application of the silicone compound. It is not recommended to touch the film that has appeared during this time. Full hardening should be expected during the day. The average drying speed is 2 mm every day. At high temperatures, the average curing time is multiplied by a factor of 1.5.
There are two types of silicone:
The acidic variety is the most common type of plumbing sealant. Well suited for strengthening the joints between the bathroom and the wall, for sealing cracks around the toilet, but it is undesirable to use the sanitary type on Teflon coatings and natural stone surfaces. Setting time is 6-7 hours.
There are quick-hardening acidic silicones on the market, with a drying time of 2 hours. There are other quick-drying options, such as the Moment sealant. The glue initially sets in 15 minutes; complete hardening can be expected in a day.
Neutral version suitable for working on almost any surfaceThis is a versatile sealant that can even be used to seal a car engine and mirrors, but it can be expensive to buy. It dries up during the day, and the temperature conditions should be kept in the range from +5 to + 40 ° С.
Acrylic sealant can be waterproof and non-waterproof, it is harmless and odorless. When using it, you can wait for freezing after 12 hours, but, of course, it all depends on various factors. Sometimes complete drying can occur only after four weeks.
The cost of the acrylic version is about 1.5 times lower than other varieties, lack of smell and harmful substances allows you to work indoors. Acrylic sealant is used for internal work, but there are products for external sealing - a frost-resistant option.
While the glue dries, it can be modified, the excess protrusions can be washed off, the already hardened sealant can be easily cut with a sharp knife.
Bituminous sealant is also called roofing. It has strength, resistance to mechanical and chemical influences, tolerates various temperature conditions and therefore is used for outdoor work.
The following types of material are distinguished:
- bituminous rubber;
Bituminous rubber sealant is widely used when working on a metal roof. It has elastic and plastic properties, is able to spread evenly over the metal, but it does not drip. The material hardens after evaporation of the solvent, the drying time is 14-22 days.
The bitumen-polymer version is actively used for sheet and roll material, concrete, metal, plastic. Provides prompt elimination of leaks, seals joints and cavities, glues various fragments of the roof. With a 3 mm layer, the formation of a primary film can be expected within an hour.
The polyurethane version is similar in quality to polyurethane foam. It cures under the influence of moisture in the air and dries quickly. Excellent for sealing interpanel seams, log joints, roofing works, sealing window and door openings. Able to withstand harsh climatic conditions.
There are such types of polyurethane:
One-component type dries by contact with air or surface. Sometimes the coating can be slightly dampened. The sealant reaches its strength in an hour after application, and completely hardens after a day. At temperatures below 23 degrees, the drying time increases.
The two-component type is mainly used on an industrial scale. The substances that are included in the composition are mixed immediately before work. The two-component version can harden after 30 minutes.
On sale there are some silicone, acrylic, bitumen or polyurethane types of sealants designed for a narrow field of application. For example, an aquarium or glass composition. From the name it is clear that this type is used for gluing mirrors or glass, but it can also be used for working with ceramics, tiles, fiberglass and other materials.
Drying time depends on the thickness of the layer and the parameters of the glass, but usually the first film is formed after 15 minutes. It is recommended to completely populate the glued aquarium only on the third day.
Separately, one can distinguish red and black sealants, which are used both for construction purposes and in car repairs. They can also include elements of both silicone and bituminous material - the drying time depends on these parameters.
They are distinguished by a pronounced color, and this is their advantage - classic sealants are colorless and difficult to paint.
What affects the cure rate?
All the indicated time frames for the sealant hardening are very conditional.
The real time depends on the following factors:
- technical characteristics of the sealant;
- the presence of additives in the composition;
- features of the material of the working surface;
- temperature conditions;
- thickness of the applied layer;
- room humidity during operation;
- oxygen content in the air.
Use the following guidelines when working with sealant.
- If the sealant layer turns out to be bulky, leave it without movement and stress for a period of twice the average. Usually it is two days. Even if the material appears to be dry, it may still be liquid inside.
- If you do not want to wait long for the silicone to harden, increase the air temperature to 40 ° C, create intensive ventilation, spray the joints with a spray bottle with water. Moisture accelerates polymerization processes.All these actions will allow the material to dry faster.
- Avoid buying acrylic when working in the bathroom. It is characterized by moisture intolerance.
- Use a neutral fungicide sealant in wet areas. These substances prevent the formation of fungi and mold.
- Do not purchase paper wrapped sealants. Check the expiration date. Don't be tempted by a price that is too low.
Carefully study the composition on the packaging of the material. When wondering how long it takes a sealant to harden, take into account all of the above factors, as well as the information specified in the instructions.
- Till-off time. This parameter denotes the time when the layer will stop sticking to your fingers.
- Final hardening. Includes the period from application to final strength.
- Application temperature. Determines the temperature regime at which work is possible. Drying time will change if you go beyond the limits.
- Permissible operating temperature. The specified interval allows you to keep the sealant strong; under other conditions, the characteristics may change.
- Shore hardness. Material strength index.
Thus, it is impossible to unequivocally answer the question of how long the sealant dries. It all depends on the type of material chosen, technical characteristics, operating conditions and operation.
For information on how to seal the seam between the bathroom and the wall using sealant, see the next video.