One formula never works for all when it comes to gluing in your DIY projects. Different adhesives are chemically designed to work with different materials. For instance, we have wood glue that is great for carpentry but not as effective on metal. Even superglue, our default option for just about anything, has its limits, and that's why you'll need the best plastic glue if you need to fix those plastic toys and plastic bowls at home.
Superglue, with cyanoacrylate as its active ingredient, is a wonderful choice for everyday repairs, and on the plus side, it dries almost instantly. However, the downside is that it doesn’t work well on smooth surfaces and was only designed to be used on polyethylene plastics or polypropylene. When using Epoxy, a multi-purpose type of glue for different materials, you’ll have to mix together a hardener and a resin.
They generally take longer to harden than superglue, which essentially gives you more time to work on them. And generally, home projects that involve gluing PVC pipes are best accomplished using a two-part cyanoacrylate adhesive that will chemically bond the PVC pipes together. The application process can, at times, be a bit messy, but the PVC cement fully hardens in just a few minutes.
Additionally, always check the packaging since some adhesives are water-resistant while some are safe for use with water. Finally, to determine the strength for the best adhesive, look at its tensile strength, measured in pounds per square inch (PSI). Generally, a higher PSI indicates a stronger glue, but this also depends on which materials you're trying to glue.
What is the Best Plastic Glue?
1. Pratley Powda Bond Adhesive Powder Filler Repair Kit -Best for Minor Repairs
Pratley Powda bond adhesive is a combination of filling powder, a wood aggregate, and heavy-duty cyanoacrylate. It forms a powerful bond that can be drilled, sanded, filed, tapped, or even painted without losing structural integrity. It bonds different plastics that include ABS plastic, PVC, polystyrene, resin, metals, fiberglass, rubber, concrete glass, and ceramic within a minute once all liquid is absorbed but takes slightly longer in cold weather.
The filling powder included in the package is used to repair holes or gaps between the objects, which comes in handy when a piece of the object is missing. To apply, place the combination of glue and powder into the hole or carefully apply it in the gap to create an adhesive bond that can also fill the gap. The filling powder usually comes in either black or white and can be mixed to give a metallic gray color.
As a filler, it can be used on automotive parts, damaged wheel caps, car bumpers, motorcycle fairings, electrical switches, damaged carburetors, radiators overflow, pool pump valves, remote controls, tools, and many others. If you don’t necessarily need the powder to fill, this heavy-duty cyanoacrylate adhesive works just as well as a powerful adhesive on its own.
2. Gorilla Super Glue -Best for Home DIY Projects
If you need glue that dries clear and quickly, then opt for the Gorilla Glue gel. It hardens in just 10-45 seconds, meaning that you won't be stuck holding plastic parts together for long. But according to the Gorilla Glue manufacturer, it's best to give this glue at least 24 hours to fully cure before using or laying any weight/pressure on the plastic. Its tensile strength rates at 500-1,500 PSI depending on the materials you're trying to glue together.
It has a thick formula that makes it easy to control where it smears, and it's not water-resistant, making it easy to use on different surfaces, including vertical ones such as walls. Additionally, it comes with an anti-clogging metal pin to help prevent the glue from clogging once opened. You can get one 20-gram bottle or grab it in packs of 2's or 10's.
The Gorilla gel glue ranks as one of the best plastic glues for most DIY projects since it uses rubber particles to create an incredibly strong impact-resistant bond. You can use it in minor appliance repairs or the sealing of small holes on the garden hose pipe. Its reaction with water molecules creates a chemical bond that effectively joins rubber, metal, leather, paper, wood, ceramic, and plastic. However, even as the best glue for plastic, it doesn't work for polyethylene, polypropylene, or smooth surfaces, so it should be sanded for best results.
In light handling, it bonds within one minute of application, and after five minutes, you won't be able to reposition the pieces, so make sure to work fast and that both surfaces are as they should be.
3. Loctite Epoxy Five Minute Instant Mix -Best Value for Money
Loctite Epoxy 5-Minute Instant mix generally works great on almost everything, including most rigid plastics, metal, ceramic, glass, wood, tiles, china, fiberglass, stone, and concrete. This budget adhesive performs as well, if not better, than some higher-priced products in a wide range of projects, which include surface repairs, gap bonding, and laminating. Thanks to its self-mixing syringe, it’s easy to use; just with a single push, its connected plunger combines the resin and hardener for application.
Once mixed, they set 5 five minutes, so apply it immediately and fast. The mix results in a high-impact and strong bond that is weather-, solvent- and water-resistant. This glue sets in a matter of seconds; however, you should give it a full 24 hours to fully cure, after which it can be sanded or even painted without losing its ultimate strength.
At first glance, this superglue seems like a regular epoxy with a two-step process, but it’s actually a superglue with a primer to help you prep the smooth plastics. You don't always have to mix the two formulas; alternatively, you can apply the plastic primer only, let it dry, and then apply the Loctite Epoxy glue.
As one of the best plastic glues, it works on all types of plastics, including polypropylene and polyethylene. This plastics bonding system is water-resistant but not waterproof and has a 290-2,900 PSI tensile strength.
Furthermore, it dries clear, doesn’t shrink as it dries, and can also be sanded or drilled once hard. Note that it's not safe to use on surfaces that should contact food or even potable water.
4. Gorilla Super Glue- Best for Plastic to Rubber
Rubber can be challenging to glue up because it flexes and, in the process, tends to break the bonds formed by the adhesive. The Gorilla Super Glue that comes with the brush and nozzle applicator is a rubber instant adhesive that solves thanks to the rubber particles within its cyanoacrylate for increased impact resistance, flexibility, and durability.
It works with most plastics, metal, leather, wood, ceramic, and paper. Plus, it comes with a well-designed brush and nozzle that allows for an easy and precise application. However, it sets within one minute of application, and the objects cannot be adjusted after this, so make sure both surfaces are okay and aligned before applying.
5. J-B Weld 8272 MarineWeld Marine Epoxy- Best for Plastic to Metal
This waterproof J-B Weld 8272 MarineWeld Marine epoxy was originally designed to repair boats, fix some dock pieces, or fasten the metal hardware at the marina. The fact that it is heat resistant (550° F) and has an ultimate strength of 5,020 PSI means that it's an ultra high strength bond that would require at least 5,020 pounds of force to pull apart. It is perfect for aluminum, metal, fiberglass, composite, wood, and any type of plastic.
This two-tube epoxy comes ready to mix in 1:1 a ratio and takes at least 4-6 hours to set, giving you a comfortably long period to adjust the target material and ensure that everything is set right. It is best to clamp the pieces in place once all are in perfect position. Its complete cure time lasts between 16-24 hours, and once fully cured, it can be filed, tapped, sanded, drilled, and molded.
Consider this glue when you need to fill gaps, cracks, or chips. Once dry, it maintains an off-white color, is water-resistant, and works well for parts that will be submerged in water for extended periods. It is also safe for contact with potable water.
What Factors Do You Consider When Buying the Best Plastic Glue?
A) Different Types of Glue for Plastic
Before choosing the right glue, you must be familiar with the different adhesive types specifically used in gluing plastic.
i) Epoxy Glue
Epoxy generally works as a two-part system of durable, high-quality glue. Not only is it strong enough in bonding plastic surfaces together, but it's also a multi-purpose glue that's capable of gluing other materials and surfaces as well.
Because of how flexible it is, it's used in both large projects in the construction industry and can be used in your home or office craft project. And specifically beneficial is the fact that this glue dries completely clear and can be used for its filling properties.
ii) Polystyrene Cement
Polystyrene cement is the strongest glue, particularly recommended for more rigid hard plastics since it can be more destructive and well molds a strong bond between the plastics. It works by going through a chemical reaction that dissolves the hard plastic surface and then molds them together as the model cement dries.
That said, it's only recommended when dealing with two plastic surfaces and not suitable for holding other materials on plastic. Also, consider how much glue you use since the polystyrene cement can completely dissolve through the whole plastic material if you pour too much.
iii) Cyanoacrylate Glue
This is the most common type of plastic glue, also known as superglue, and can glue together various things. Not only can it be used in gluing plastic surfaces together, but it can also be used to glue other materials to the plastic surface.
It's one of the most versatile glues that can bond plastic and provide a heavy-duty and strong bonding. The superglue coms in different viscosities, ranging from thick to thin. Note that thick superglue moves slowly is more heavy-duty, and even takes much longer to dry. On the other hand, a thin superglue will move faster and dries almost instantly.
B) What do you want to glue together?
As you're searching for the best glue, always consider what type of surfaces you want to glue together. Not only is the type of surface important, but also is the size of the surface. The best glues for plastic will stick together practically anything, as long as the surface isn’t greasy, dirty, or wet.
But they generally don’t work well in gluing together large surfaces, especially in a short period, because of the small quantity and high viscosity they usually come in.
C) How much does the right adhesive bottle hold?
Another important factor is the glue capacity for plastic. Most plastic glues will come in small bottles because just one drop and amount go a long way. But this can be a problem for anyone planning on using this glue frequently throughout or on a large project.
In this case, consider purchasing a bottle of glue for plastic glue, most of which hold around 16 ounces of product. And if that’s not enough, also consider purchasing larger quantities of the same product.
D) Is it Anti-clogging?
Additionally, find out whether your plastic glue has anti-clogging properties. Glues are commonly known to clog at the nozzle when the particles dry and collect at the nozzle as they’re being dispensed. Some manufacturers design their applicator tips with this in mind, so some tips come with anti-clogging features, and some come with a pin to further limit the risk of clogging or dispensing unevenly.
Frequently Asked Questions on the Best Plastic Glue
1. How do you bind plastic on plastic?
The best plastic bonder is poly cement (also known as plastic cement). The specialized epoxy adhesives for plastic include the Loctite plastics bonding system or Superglue plastic fusion and cyanoacrylate (also known as the instant 'glue' or 'cyano').
2. How do you do plastic bonding with two pieces of plastic?
If two separate pieces of plastic need to be joined or if the plastic has a crack, you'll need to do some plastic welding. Basically, you need to apply heat to the edges of the plastic until it is molten enough to bind both parts together.
3. How to reinforce certain plastics?
To reinforce plastic that's cracked, you first need to seal the inside part where the plastic has cracked. To do this, hold both plastic edges together and then heat to melt them a little to fill the crack. When done, the plastic becomes even stronger than it was originally.