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Carton Sealing Tape Guidelines

There are so many carton sealing tapes that you can choose from and choosing the right type of tapes for your specific applications can be confusing. Carton sealing tape is available in two varieties, pressure sensitive and water activated.

Pressure sensitive tape is typically made of PVC or Polypropylene backing with acrylic, hot melt or natural rubber adhesive. Pressure sensitive tape is relatively inexpensive, provides a good bond for many carton sealing applications and is easily applied with an inexpensive tape gun.

Water activated tape is constructed of kraft paper backing and sometimes includes fiberglass reinforcement. Water activated tape requires a stationary dispenser containing water to dispense the tape and activate the adhesive, but forms a superior bond when applied to corrugated cartons.

Pressure Sensitive Tapes

Hot Melt
Hot melt tape is also known as synthetic rubber and is typically manufactured with a polypropylene backing. Hot melt tape works well from 45-120 degrees, provides a good bond for most carton sealing applications and is the lowest cost pressure sensitive tape available. Hot melt will yellow with time, but will do so more slowly than natural rubber tape.

Acrylic is the medium priced pressure sensitive tape and features excellent clarity and resistance to yellowing. It may be applied in temperatures ranging from 32-140 degrees, is a great general purpose tape and is the favorite when carton appearance is an important consideration.

Natural Rubber
Natural rubber adhesive is the best pressure sensitive tape for sealing cartons in extreme temperatures (0-150 degrees), humidity or dampness because it quickly forms a long lasting bond. Natural rubber tape is darker than acrylic or hot melt tape and yellows as it ages. Natural rubber is the most expensive pressure sensitive tape available.

Water Activated Tapes

Water activated tape provides a bond to corrugated cartons that is second to none. Your heavy duty jobs are best handled by fiberglass reinforced tape, while lighter cartons are easily handled by the less expensive non-reinforced tape. Water activated tape is unaffected by heat, cold, light or humidity and works well in dusty and dirty environments. Water activated tape is recyclable and provides a strong, secure seal that cannot be broken without detection


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