How Bad Are Solvent-Based Adhesives for The Environment?

A solvent-based adhesive has a solvent as its base liquid (into which a polymer is dissolved), as opposed to water-based adhesives, which have water as their base liquid. Solvent-based adhesives are used in many industries including: the automotive industry, shoe manufacturing, the furniture industry, and construction.

In spite of their versatility, one of the main problems with solvent-based adhesives is that they are bad for the environment. They can adversely affect the ecosystem and human health in numerous ways.

Air Pollution

Solvents are harmful to the quality of our air. ¬†Breathing solvent-based adhesives can lead to a number of serious health concerns including: respiratory inflammation, asthma and lung disease. Solvents can also affect the brain and can be stored in the brain’s fatty tissue.

Water Pollution

water pollution


Water pollution can be a problem, particularly with dispersion adhesives (emulsion adhesive).  Waste from the solvent adhesive is not easily biodegradable. In the manufacturing industry, it can be eliminated along with excess sludge by biodegradable treatment plants. If solvents contaminate water, however, it can lead to the destruction of wildlife and possible contamination of drinking water.

Soil Pollution

When liquid adhesive residues are not disposed of utilizing proper hazardous waste collection, they may end up contaminating the soil and eventually the groundwater. This can lead to the destruction of flora and fauna and dangerous health risks for anyone who comes into contact with it.

Why Choose Hot Melt Adhesives?

Hot melt glues are solvent-free. They produce very little waste and minimal impact on the environment. Additionally, they are easily applied in areas which do not require special ventilation systems and they are low cost, which makes them perfect for high-volume operations.

At Sure Tack Systems we know how bad solvent-based adhesives are for the environment and we take pride in our eco-friendly products. Talk to us today about how we can help your business reduce its carbon footprint by using hot melt adhesives.