While there’s a huge selection of different sealants used for a multitude of different applications and in varying industries, silicone sealants tend to be the most widespread. They offer more flexibility due to their favourable properties – elasticity and stability in both high and low temperatures, as well as high resistance to chemicals, moisture and inclement weather. This makes silicone sealant the perfect solution for simple house projects such as sealing cracks, or repairs to sinks and bathtubs.
The good weather resistance will also see you reaching for a silicone sealant when fixing gaps in window or door frames. Besides construction and repairs, silicone sealants are also used in other areas, such as sealing gaskets in engines, or cables, switches and sensors in electronics.
Choosing the Right Silicone Sealant
Silicone sealants can be divided into three basic groups: High Modulus Acetoxy, Low Modulus Neutral and Low Modulus Acetoxy. Choosing the right sealant will be based on how it cures and its modulus or in layman’s terms, its resistance to elasticity. All sealant cures by reacting with the moisture in the air. Acetoxy sealants give off a vinegary odour, have a high modulus and cure quicker than neutral silicone sealants. These, on the other hand, are odourless, often take much longer to cure and have low modulus.
High-modulus sealants allow for less movement and are preferred for indoor use, whereas low-modulus sealants are softer and often used outdoors. Back to our three basic sealant groups. High Modulus Acetoxy sealants are commonly used for interior sealing of windows and doors, and with an added fungicide, around baths, showers and glass. Low Modulus Neutral sealants are more flexible and weather resistant and are good for exterior applications – external window and door frames, or panel and concrete joints. Lastly, Low Modulus Acetoxy sealants are the ideal all-purpose sealant used both indoors and outdoors and with good adhesion to a range of different materials.
Any Sealant Manufacturer I Should be Aware of?
While the market is flooded with dozens of inferior sealants from as many brands, finding a quality sealant doesn’t have to be a challenge. Belgian manufacturer Soudal is a global leader in silicone and other sealant types and provides a vast range of adhesives and polyurethane foams for both professional and home use. The company was founded in 1966 and has 19 production facilities on 5 continents, and sales offices in 44 different countries, including Australia. With over 3000 employees, and more than 350 million sealants and adhesives sold worldwide, they have a sound footing in the construction, chemical, and DIY sectors.
Soudal Silicone Sealant Range
When it comes to silicone sealants, Soudal has all bases covered. Their extensive range means choosing the right sealant is simple. The lineup is clearly defined according to usage. Here are the Soudal silicone sealant options currently sold:
- All-Purpose Silicone – This is the all-rounder in the lineup and is suitable across a range of different applications. It offers sealing, waterproofing and bonding in dozens of substrates including ceramics, glass, aluminium, stainless steel, timber, concrete, fibreglass, laminate, painted surfaces and more. Use it in bathrooms and kitchens to seal tubs, sinks, showers, tiles and plumbing fixtures; in roofs and gutters for guttering, cladding, roofing, downpipes, ducting, sheet metal etc., and in windows and glazing for sealing around frames, display cabinets, architraves and so much more. This is an eco-friendly, food-safe and water-potable sealant, that is also mould resistant. The best part is that the sealant comes in a range of different colours (besides the clear colour option), from alabaster, beige or different shades of grey to aluminium and charcoal black.
- Bathroom and Kitchen Silicone – This is the ideal neutral cure silicone sealant used in sealing, waterproofing and bonding in bathrooms and kitchens. The sealant has high resistance to mould and mildew, strong adhesion to a variety of materials (tiles, ceramics, metal and fibreglass) and high elasticity. Available in translucent, grey or white.
- Glass and Glazing Silicone – Another neutral cure Soudal silicone sealant with the added benefit of superior weatherproofing. It offers strong adhesion to glass, tiles, metals, brick, concrete and other materials and can be used both indoors and outdoors. Get in matt black, light grey or translucent tints.
- Roof and Gutter Silicone – This Soudal sealant works best against harsh exterior conditions. It’s ideal in all manners of roofing, guttering, ducting and cladding (including Colorbond), has high elasticity and UV resistance and is water-potable (for those rain tanks).
- Silirub AQ – This is a high-modulus acetoxy cure silicone ideally used in the construction and repair of glass aquaria (all in the name). After curing it becomes chemically inert, so is perfectly safe. It has high adhesion, is UV resistant and is offered in a glass-like translucent colour.
- Silirub-HT-A – A sealant for high-heat areas. It has excellent adhesion to metals, glass and glazed substrates, exhibits temperature resistance up to 285°C, and is ideally used in automotive and engineering applications, such as sealing pumps and engines. Get it in black.
- Silirub WS+ – This neutral cure and highly elastic industrial sealant is ideal for sealing of expansion joints of façade elements, as well as double-glazed window panels. It offers ideal protection against rain, frost, wind, UV rays and high temperatures. Offered in black, white and silver grey.
- Silirub S8800+ – This is a non-staining, low-modulus neutral curing sealant suitable for use with natural stone, such as marble and granite. It has a thick body, is easy to get to the desired texture and has a gloss finish offered in over a dozen different colours.
- Univeral Silicone – A low modulus, neutral cure sealant great for building joints with high movement. Offered in clear or white.
- GasketSeal – a chemical and temperature-resistant silicone sealant, replacing cork, felt, fibre, paper and rubber gaskets. Ideal for sealing metal components and heating installations. Get it in an appealing red.
If this range of silicone sealants doesn’t meet your needs, Soudal also produces a selection of polyurethane, polymer, epoxy and specialty sealants.