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8 Places Where Adhesive Tapes Are Used in Construction

Although many types of pressure-sensitive tapes are used in residential and commercial construction, they are often invisible to most people. From durability and low cost to easy application and strength, these construction tapes offer many advantages. In addition, they are manufactured to specific requirements to provide water and/or air tightness to various materials or installations.

Let’s take a look at eight places where residential home builders are using tapes today.

1. Exterior Walls

Construction tapes used in exterior walls must stand up to a wide range of elements and last for decades. Using high-quality materials, adhesive tapes can be designed to fit many needs. Butyl adhesive tapes are often used for sealing around flashing or exterior vents. These tapes perform well in extreme temperatures and last for a long time. Acrylic adhesive tape is another popular variety in construction due to its ability to prevent air infiltration, making the building more energy efficient.

Here are a few ways that adhesive tapes are used in exterior wall construction.

  • Seaming of house wrap materials (exterior insulation) and vapour barrier
  • Sealing all insulation seams to create a barrier against air and water penetration
  • Taping transition seams between the roof and walls to create an air and water-tight barrier
  • Sealing any holes through the walls such as water spigots, exhaust vent outlets, HVAC condensate lines, or light fixtures and receptacles
  • Painting & stucco
  • Closure system and seam sealer on house wrap and exterior sheathing materials
  • Fixing architectural elements such as house number

2. Interior Walls

When constructing interior walls, builders need adhesive tapes that create seals to keep the room airtight. Acrylic tapes suit this purpose because the seal often becomes tighter over time when manufactured with the right materials. Masking tape is another common tape used in interior walls for preventing paint damage to other surfaces when finishing one wall. Double-sided tapes are commonly used to hold insulation in place.

Below are the common uses of construction tapes inside a building:

  • Sealing polyethylene vapour barriers
  • Protecting or delineating areas or elements before painting
  • Covering joints between two sheets of drywall before plastering
  • Sealing air barriers in basement walls

3. Roof

Roofing tapes must be manufactured to withstand both high and low temperatures, as well as extreme storms and weather phenomenon. Foil tapes, designed with a metal backing to be malleable, reflect heat and light, offering energy efficiency. Acrylic or butyl tapes are often used in sealing vents or pipes along the roof to prevent moisture penetration.

The top reasons to use construction tapes in roofing work are:

  • Sealing penetrations when installing vents, wiring, or pipes
  • Repairing roofs
  • Seaming (taping seams of plywood)
  • Creating a waterproof seal between metal roofing or metal siding panels
  • Installing an air barrier inside

4. Windows and Doors

The application of flashing tape around windows and doors is one of the most important steps in the installation process. This type of tape acts as a seal around sills, door jambs and window headers in wood frame construction. Sheathing tape can also be used to secure items during installation such as insulation.

5. Gutters

Construction tapes are ideal for sealing or patching gutters. Butyl tapes are durable and stand up to the elements and extreme temperatures that your home is subjected to. Consider single- or double-sided tape, depending on where you’re using the adhesive.

6. HVAC

Aluminum foil tapes must maintain permanent seals in difficult conditions. These types of tapes are manufactured to withstand extreme temperatures and humidity while complying to applicable UL standards. Adhesive tapes are the perfect material for HVAC systems because they can be designed to adhere to uneven surfaces or substrates, providing versatility and ease of operation when building. HVAC installers primarily use aluminum foil tapes to seal joints against air leakage. They also use them to secure strips of insulation.

7. Plumbing & Electrical

Electrical and plumbing tapes must meet stringent requirements to ensure compliance with industry regulations.

Electrical tapes are used to insulate cables and connections. They can also be used to identify voltage or function in certain applications. Black electrical tape is standard, but other colors are used for labeling.

The tapes used in plumbing are PTFE thread sealing tapes. They are used in the assembly of pipes and in the installation of various plumbing fixtures such as faucets and sinks.

8. Flooring

Tapes are an affordable method of bonding flooring material to the subfloor. Double-sided tapes are often used to secure carpeting because they can permanently bond two different materials. The adhesive materials on each side of the tape can be customized to match the materials you are using.

Tape Solutions That Fit Your Needs

Adhesive tapes offer many options for thickness, adhesion, temperature resistance and more. Many tapes have been specially designed for specific applications such as those used in residential and commercial construction. So, it’s just a matter of defining your application to find the best type of tape for it.

MPI Matco specializes in industrial tapes and adhesives including tapes for the construction industry. We have a large inventory of pressure-sensitive tapes ranging from duct tapes and electrical tapes to seaming tapes. If you have a specific bonding challenge in mind, you can count on our experts to help you find a solution customized to your needs. Contact us for more information on our products and services.

Additional reading on adhesive tapes and their use in construction

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