Whether they’re being used for wrapping pipes, making gaskets, sealing doors or forming some other type of high temperature barrier, thermal heat insulation tapes are often a cost effective and labour saving option. Because of this popularity, there’s a wide range of options when it comes to high temperature tapes. Obviously there’s a fair degree of choice in materials and sizes, but there’s also a large range of different constructions, finishes and technical properties which may highly relevant for some applications.
This guide is designed to provide a summary of many of these options to help get you started on the way to choosing the best tape for your requirements. It won’t cover everything of course, but it will try and give you a preview of what each tape is capable of so you can click through to that types individual page for more information.
One of the first things you’ll want to look at is temperature rating. One of the primary differences between all the grades and styles of available heat insulation tapes is the maximum amount of temperature they can handle.
One thing to be hyper-aware of is that a thermal tape is only as good as it’s weakest link when it comes to temperature. For instance, let’s look at fibreglass tape. Now, usually, fibreglass has a maximum temperature rating of around 500°C. If it’s coated in silicone though, this plummets down to about 260°C as the silicone is limited to about this rating. In some applications, this may not be a problem (such as when you have a sacrificial adhesive tape used to assist with installation only) but for others, it is a concern worth noting.
RUBBER AND SILICONE COATED INSULATION TAPES
Yellow Neoprene Coated Fibreglass Cloth
Neoprene’s sealability and abrasion resistance with the insulation and tensile strength of fibreglass
One of many different kinds of rubber coated insulation tapes that are available. This insulation cloth is lightweight and very easy to work with. The rubber ensures this tape resists fraying, increases abrasion resistance and allows the tape to be used extensively for medium temperature gaskets and sealing strips. The Neoprene rubber is limited to around 130°C but the base fibreglass fabric will handle up to 540°C.
Grey Silicone Coated Fibreglass Cloth
Light silicone coated increases sealability while underlying fibreglass cloth does the heavy thermal lifting.
A very light coating of silicone is applied over the top of an underlying woven fibreglass fabric to create a tape that can be used for sealing or insulating in applications up to 260°C. This tape’s silicone coating is not as heavy as that on our red silicone coated fibreglass tape and does not form a waterproof barrier like the red, heavier version.
Medium Silicone Coated Fibreglass Cloth
Medium-weight silicone coating increases sealability while the fibreglass does the heavy thermal lifting.
Available in three different colours (matched up to 3 different thicknesses) as standard, these tapes combine good insulation performance with excellent workability. The silicone helps reduce fraying (especially when punching holes to make gasket strips) and increases sealability. The underlying fibreglass works to increase tensile strength and enhance insulation performance. These tapes are available in a selection of sizes and are used in applications up to 260°C.
Solid Silicone Coated Fibreglass Cloth
Heavy silicone sealing layers on both sides of a fibreglass cloth for added strength and thermal performance.
Manufactured from woven fibreglass cloth coated on both sides with a solid layer of silicone rubber, this high performance insulation tape is ideal for making medium-temperature gaskets and sealing strips. The silicone rubber has excellent chemical resistance and very good sealing characteristics while the fiberglass helps enhance the tapes tensile strength and reduces thermal conductivity. Also available in sheets, this tape is used in areas up to 260°C.
ARAMID INSULATION TAPES (AKA KEVLAR TAPE)
By combining high strength and excellent abrasion resistance with good temperature resistance, Aramid Tapes are ideal for applications that require excellent physical toughness and thermal properties. Our Aramid Insulation Tapes are highly flexible and exhibit excellent resistance to many chemicals.
Aramid Insulation Tapes are often used for heavy duty, high temperature gaskets, lagging and heat shielding in areas where they are expected to encounter some physical stress. They are used in applications up to 340°C and are easily identifiable thanks to their distinctive yellow colour.
FIBREGLASS INSULATION TAPES
Industrial Grade Fibreglass Tape
Economical, reliable, high temperature insulation.
Industrial grade fibreglass tape is highly flexible with good tensile strength. This insulation tape is also able to withstand continuous exposure to temperatures as high as 500°C. With a lower density than our premium grade, this tape is often used for lagging applications such as wrapping exhausts, pipes, cables and pipes.
Premium Fibreglass Insulation Tape
Higher density, high temperature insulation tape
Premium fibreglass insulation tape has a higher density construction which allows for greater physical strength and lower thermal conductivity. Like our Industrial Grade, our Premium Fibreglass Insulation Tape withstands up to 500°C. It is often used for making high temperature gaskets, lagging or general insulation applications in areas with tight space constraints or an expectation of some mechanical stress.
Fibreglass Ladder Tape
Special variant of our industrial grade fibreglass insulation tape with pre-cut holes along the centre.
Also known as drop-weave tape, Fibreglass Ladder Tape got it’s name because that’s exactly what it looks like; a ladder. Right along the centre weaves have been removed during manufacture to allow bolts to slide effortlessly through. This eliminates the risk of fraying due to having to cut or punch the tape on site and makes fibreglass ladder tape ideal for high temperature gaskets. In all other ways, it is identical to our Industrial Grade Fibreglass Insulation Tape.
TADPOLE HEAT INSULATION TAPE
Tadpole Tape consists of a bulb and a tail which can each be made from a selection of materials. This versatility makes Tadpole Tape very hard to classify for temperature as it could be as low as 110°C (if made with a Nitrile Rubber Cord bulb) or over 1200°C (when made with a Ceramic Rope bulb).
Because of its unique construction, Tadpole Tape is ideal for sealing and insulating around doors and access ports on high temperature equipment such as the door of a domestic combustion heater or an industrial baking oven, furnace or boiler.
For more information on available options and instructions on how to measure this tape please see our recent post detailing Thermal Tadpole Tape in depth.
REFRASIL SILICA HIGH TEMPERATURE TAPE
Refrasil Tape is a high quality, high temperature insulation tape capable of handling continuous exposure to 982°C. Woven from Silica fibres, Refrasil Tapes are available in a selection of widths, thicknesses and in either standard woven or pre-shrunk form (which reduces the potential for further shrinkage).
These tapes offer outstanding thermal performance combined with very good dielectric strength and chemical resistance. They are often used for power cable insulation, hose wrapping, in welding blanket construction and in mop curtains for continuous belt furnaces.
CERAMIC INSULATION TAPE
Ceramic Insulation Tape with Fibreglass Reinforcement
High temperature insulation with good electrical insulation properties.
Manufactured from high purity ceramic fibres with fibreglass reinforcement for added strength. This tape is dielectric and can handle ongoing applications up to 800°C. This tape also has very good chemical resistance and is highly resistance to thermal shock or breakdown due to stress or vibration. If wet by water or steam both physical and thermal properties are restored upon drying.
Ceramic Insulation Tape with Nickel-Chrome Reinforcement
High performance tape designed for extreme temperatures.
Manufactured from high purity ceramic fibres reinforced with nickel-chrome for added strength. This tape is able to handle ongoing exposure to temperatures as high as 1200°C. Like the fibreglass reinforced variant, Nickel-Chrome reinforced Fibreglass Tape has excellent chemical resistance and is highly resistant to thermal shock or breakdown from vibration. It’s mechanical and thermal properties are restored on drying if it is wet but it is not dielectric so it should not be used for electrical insulation work.
Lytherm Ceramic Fibre Paper Slit Rolls
Highly conformable, high temperature insulation paper that withstands 1260°C.
Associated Gaskets is pleased to be able to offer slit rolls of our Lytherm Ceramic Fibre Paper. This high quality ceramic insulation material is resistant to most chemicals and offers low thermal conductivity, low heat storage and excellent compression recovery. If wet by water or steam, thermal and physical properties are restored upon drying. This is a highly flexible with good dielectric strength and is often used for high temperature gaskets, thermal barriers, sealing strips and door and lid seals.
OTHER HEAT PROTECTION TAPES
There are many, many more of thermal heat insulation tapes available; many of them already in stock here at Associated Gaskets. In some ways, the size of the remaining list depends a little on what definition we choose to use for Thermal Insulation Tapes as almost all tapes have some thermal properties. We’ll leave that one for another day and instead include below just a few more examples of available tapes that are often used (at least in part) for their thermal capabilities.
If you would like more information on any of our heat insulation tapes, or assistance with deciding on the best tape for your application, please do not hesitate to contact your local Associated Gaskets branch. We’ll be happy to help.