Do you want to fireproof things or perhaps insulate hot water pipes? In any case, if your problem includes heat, then thermal tapes are the ultimate solution!
A thermal tape is a repairing tool that enables you to tackle heat-relevant issues. You can use it to improve the heat conductivity of an object or reinforce the joint between two hot metals.
Essentially, a thermal tape is multi-purpose and remains handy for instant fixes. However, there are also different variants available in the market. You’ll find heat-conducting, insulating, and even sublimating tapes.
Below, we have brought together the best thermal tapes in 2022. There’s also an insightful guide and FAQ section to resolve all of your queries. Read more!
If you want a multi-purpose thermal tape, then the Newtex Z-Flex Heat Shield Tape is an excellent option. It measures 25×2-feet, which is more than enough for the price. You can conveniently wrap huge portions using a single tape. The Z-Flex aluminum foil has texturized fiberglass coating with pressure-sensitive adhesive. Its shiny silvery exterior makes the final wrapped product appear cool.
Plus, the tape offers outstanding heat resistance, insulation, and shielding. Its heat-reflective foil side protects up to 3000-degrees Fahrenheit radiant heat. However, do not expose the tape to extremely hot metals (350+ degrees Fahrenheit). This particular tape is flammable. Also, do not bend or twist the tape while wrapping. It can easily develop creases and wrinkles.
Do you use a heat press or HTV a lot? If so, then this Teflon Heat Resistant Sublimation Tape is a real deal maker! The amazing bundle offers 3-rolls of heat sublimation tapes and 3-Teflon sheets. You get all this stuff in a budget-friendly range too!
These polyester film tapes are thin and long. Covering large surfaces and objects is possible by using a single tape roll. Plus, it does not crease or bend so that you can wrap things easily. Each of the tapes has a high heat resistance of up to 536-degrees Fahrenheit. Although the tape has a good adhesive, it comes off easily and leaves no residue. However, it has a strange odor that can be difficult to tackle.
The 3M Scotch Aluminum Foil Tape is an idealistic choice for both outdoor and indoor use. It is a soft, aluminum foil-backed thermal tape that you can use for almost all adhesion purposes. From joints to ducts, this tape features pressure-sensitive rubber adhesion. It ensures everything remains intact and thermally insulated.
It acts as a barrier, preventing the heat’s escape. The tape’s excellent thermal conductivity makes heating and cooling quite efficient. Also, Scotch aluminum tape has resistance against a variety of things. These include moisture, UV rays, flame, smoke, chemicals, and smoke. Hence, the object or surface wrapped with this tape will remain safe.
Efficient & versatile-the MS WGO Rolls Heat Resistant Tape comprises polyimide film. It is a 12mm wide thermal tape that comes in a pack of two. The silicone adhesion ensures the tape seals everything firmly. Unlike some competitors, there will be no leakages or gaps.
Plus, you can take out the tape whenever you like. It will leave no residues behind. However, the MS WGO roll is prone to chipping and breaking. So, be vigilant while application. It is compatible with a diverse range of heat temperatures (-99 to 500-degrees Fahrenheit). The tape offers good thermal conductivity and efficiency. All in all, these MS WGO Rolls Heat Resistant Tapes are true-life saviors. You can use thermal tape for all sorts of tasks, ranging from microelectronics to aviation.
The Equity BAYMERS thermal tape outshines the others with its flexible and innovative composition. Also called Goldfinger tape, it comes in a pack of two so that you can wrap larger surfaces in a single go. However, the narrow width makes it time-consuming. You will be wrapping it again and again to ensure full coverage. Nonetheless, the heat-resistant tape performs efficiently, and that’s what we need!
It is a polyimide film tape that you can use to coat silicone pressure-sensitive adhesives. The tape offers great precision (± 2.5um), which makes the results fine. It has a high-temperature tolerance of up to 482-degrees Fahrenheit. Also, the flexible tape has scratch and solvent resistance too. It won’t chip or shred once wrapped.
Comes in a pack of two
Easy peel and no residue
Good heat resistance
Buying Guide for the Best Thermal Tapes
What Is a Thermal Tape?
Fundamentally, thermal tape is an adhesive. It helps tough things glue together and stick together. It fills up the small gaps between two surfaces to keep the heat from dissipating away.
Ok. Cool. Now, what is thermal tape exactly?
It’s a tape, my friend – a tape! Visualize it as a long-narrow strip of a certain material that’s sticky on one side but not the other.
Now, if you are wondering how is it any different from a regular tape, then let’s dissect the name:
Thermal: Relating to Heat
Tape: Band or Strip
Decoding the formal name of this adhesive, we got to know it’s a tape that tackles tough heat-related stuff. And naturally, that affects the built and application.
If you are curious about what the heat-related stuff possibly could be, then here are a few examples:
Insulation of Hot Water Pipes
Usually, a thermal insulating tape comprises a porous back made up of foam or cloth. Note that manufacturers may use various backings and adhesives (more of which we have covered in the buying guide below) depending on the tape’s purpose.
Things To Consider in the Best Thermal Tape
All thermal tapes are adhesives, after all. If we consider the average use & perception of tapes and adhesives, quality is by far the only standard of inspection.
You’d find most buyers (including yourself, perhaps!) determining whether they should purchase a tape or not, based on whether it helps things stick together for long or not? Or how strong is its adhesiveness?
While these are good criteria of assessments as well, these are not measurable. Thus, leading to an ill-informed purchase.
So, here we have listed a few specific aspects that you must analyze to determine which thermal tape will best suit your needs.
The first and fundamental aspect to consider is the type of thermal tape. Currently, there are four most common types of heat insulation tapes:
Vinyl tape is a versatile option. And thus, it's used most commonly, such as in low-voltage applications of both offices and homes. It can easily withstand abrasion, moisture, changing temperatures, or even chemicals.
Glass Cloth Tape
Crafted from polyester film and glass fiber strands, glass cloth tape is suitable for places where you require high thermal resistance, such as furnace power supply systems. It can withstand extended exposure to temperatures as high as 130 – 200 degrees Celsius and also possesses great tensile strength. We also recommend this one for motor leads, switches, and wrapping coils.
Polyimide tapes are thin thermal tapes that provide high-temperature stability. The durability of these tapes makes them best suited for circuit-building and gluing together electrical and automotive components. These are generally flame-resistant.
Rubber tapes themselves include several sub-types of tapes, such as Vulcanised rubber tape. Most premium types of rubber thermal tapes come in handy for medium to high voltage applications. It may also come into use for cable jacketing and repairing tasks. More general types come into use for moisture seals, repairs, paddings, etc.
Another aspect that you should consider is the thickness and width of the thermal tape. If you are bundling and harnessing cables, you might require thin thermal tapes. However, if you are insulating water pipes and catering to industrial machinery, then you may need thick thermal tapes.
Also, with thicker and wider thermal tapes, you get greater dielectric strength. That’s because we measure dielectric strength as voltage per thickness. So, the thicker the tape, the more voltage it can withstand.
Elasticity refers to the ability of a thermal tape to get back to its original shape when you stretch it a bit. It’s an aspect that you must assess if you are opting for vinyl tape. The most premium ones will regain their original positions, even upon multiple stretches.
Technical Properties of Thermal Tape
Once you’ve evaluated the factors above, it’s time to look in for the following technical strengths of your preferred thermal tape:
The higher the values of all, the stronger your thermal tape will be (except the last value!). You want minimal possible water vapor permeability.
How to Apply Thermal Tape?
Applying the thermal tape is a simple process. It’s similar to applying the regular tape except if you implement the tips mentioned below, you’d acquire optimal results.
When applying thermal tapes, avoid insulating. That’s because the tape already gets heated up. If you cover it with flammable insulation, it can catch fire.
Similarly, when applying it to cords, cables, or anything, ensure that you stretch it as much as possible. In this way, it gives the best possible insulation. With that said, never use thermal tape as a replacement for wire nuts.
Another tip that we’d like to mention here is always overlapping half the width of the tap when wrapping it around a pipe, cable, or similar thing. It will bring about better thickness and keep the tape intact.
Thermal Tape FAQ
Q: What can I use instead of thermal tape?
A: There are several alternatives to thermal tapes, such as thermal epoxy or paste. However, thermal tapes prove to be the most efficient. You won’t get the same quality of adhesiveness and strength as thermal tape.
Q: What is a good thermal conductivity for thermal pads?
A: Thermal conductivity refers to the ability of an object or wire to transmit heat. The object that allows heat to pass through is a thermal conductor, such as thermal pads/tapes.Generally, an average quality conductor has a 3W/mK rating. A higher rating than this will provide you with better results.
Q: Is thermal tape easy to remove?
A: The removal of thermal tape greatly depends on the adhesiveness. A stronger thermal tape will stick more firmly to the surface and will be harder to remove.Usually, thermal tapes are flexible and easy-to-peel. So, you can simply peel it off. In case it leaves a residue, you can use rubbing alcohol and a soft cloth to remove it.
Q: What is a better thermal paste or thermal tape?
A: The thermal paste VS thermal tape debate has been going on for years. And, biased opinions can leave one quite confused. However, don’t worry because we have resolved this one for you too!Both thermal paste and tape are adhesives used to bound hot metals. People use it in hot water pipes, exhausts, computers, and whatnot.In theory, the thermal tape can provide better conductivity as it is in a solid-state. Packed molecules vibrate and transfer heat more quickly.Comparatively, a thermal paste won’t offer the same efficiency. Although it lasts longer, these pastes are difficult-to-use too. Unlike tape, the application involves a lot of mess and cleaning. Some pastes might require dedicated cleaners for removal.
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