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Heat Activated Adhesives

Posted by Sue Chambers Mar 26, 2014 12:00:00 AM

Heat Activated Adhesives – A type of adhesive that is not sticky or will not bond at normal temperatures but once heated to a certain temperature the chemicals are activated to create a bond.

Heat activated adhesives are great for bonding almost just about any combination of materials from plastics, metals, and even wood. Upon activation from a heat source the adhesive goes through 2 phases.

  1. The first phase occurs in a matter of seconds after the heat activation and bonding take place and the adhesive begins to cool. This is what gives the bond its initial strength.
  2. Phase two occurs over the next few minutes. After the adhesive cools the chemicals begin to crystalize significantly increasing the material bond strength.

You can see in the video below how this poster is backed with heat activated adhesive. Before heat is applied to the adhesive there is no tackiness and it feels just like a paper. The poster is then placed on a foam board and the adhesive is activated by a heat roller creating a strong bond in a matter of seconds.


3M has a wide selection of thermal bonding films for many applications including Antenna Bonding, Battery Bonding, Low Surface Energy Bonding, and much more. These films have been designed and lab tested to be reworkable and perform well in drop testing.

If you have questions about Heat Activated Adhesives or Thermal Bonding Films leave us a comment below!

Sue Chambers

Written by Sue Chambers

President and CEO of Strouse