Is Scotch Tape Flammable? (And Conductive)


Scotch tape is one of the most useful tools we use in our day-to-day life. It is a common tool that you can find in almost any household and its uses are countless. You can use it to fix broken items, stick torn paper, remove lint, pick up remnants of broken glass, or even remove dirt from your keyboard. 

Although it is very useful for your daily use, you need to know if it is flammable or not. Flammable items pose a risk of catching fire, so you need to be aware of how safe it is. 

In this article, we will explain whether the Scotch tape is flammable or not and if it is safe to use on hot surfaces. Read on to know more! 

Is Scotch Tape Flammable?

The Scotch tape is completely safe for everyday usage and doesn’t catch fire. When exposed to fire, the layer of adhesive will start melting instead of catching fire. However, they can be dangerous if you push them beyond their limits. They may become explosive due to several factors, including extreme fire contact and increased voltage.

Because Scotch tapes are accessible to a wide spectrum of the public, they retain additional safety measures, including the anti-flammable characteristic. 

Scotch tapes have comparatively greater flashpoints which makes them less likely to catch fire. Apart from that, when these Scotch tapes go through heat, their adhesive disintegrates during the process, which results in them melting without catching fire. 

However, do not attempt to push them beyond their limits. When exposed to certain extremities like a high voltage or fire contact, they can become explosive. 

Does Scotch Tape Withstand Heat?

The answer is yes! Scotch tape is a very suitable option when you are in need of a tape that is able to withstand heat. Transparent cellophane tape is perfect for use in temperature-resistant packing and splicing applications since it maintains its strength at temperatures as high as 300 degrees Fahrenheit.

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Scotch tape is able to resist and withstand a lot of heat as its adhesive is very strong, due to which the tape can be utilized on the majority of treated metals. Therefore, whenever you are in need of an adhesive that can work properly in heat, Scotch tape is a considerable option for you.

Moreover, Scotch tape is intended for packaging projects requiring high temperatures. The backing material, cellophane, is heat resistant. Scotch tape has natural rubber glue which attaches to a wide range of materials and offers a strong initial bond. Due to this, it provides a strong hold even when it is exposed to a controlled amount of heat.

What Happens When The Scotch Tape Is Heated?

If the Scotch tape is exposed to a lot of heat, it starts melting and its adhesive starts disintegrating. Due to this factor, it is often recommended that adhesive tapes or Scotch tape should not be used in summer because the adhesive will become softer when heated, losing its tenacity and allowing it to separate from the connection.

Now, you know that Scotch tape is pretty much inflammable and also is good at withstanding heat. So you might think, what if I use Scotch tape as a tool to extinguish the flame because of its high resistance to heat? We would strongly recommend you to not try that at home. 

Such high temperatures might result in an increase in the amount of tape failure and prolonged exposure to extremely hot sources might melt the rubber adhesive. Scotch tape is good at withstanding high temperatures, but only when it is exposed to these high temperatures under a certain limit. 

When the Scotch tape is subjected to a very high temperature for a long period of time, it gets heated and the adhesive disintegrates which results in the melting of the tape. Therefore, under these circumstances, the Scotch tape should be used wisely while following provided precautions.

What Temperature Does Scotch Tape Melt?

Scotch tape has a melting point higher than 175°C (347°F). However, after 100°C (212°F), it stops sticking. So if you are using Scotch tape for something that needs it to withstand heat, you must make sure that it is under this range of temperatures. 

A melting point is a temperature at which a certain substance starts melting. The stronger the substance, the higher the melting point it has. So, good adhesive tapes need to have higher melting points in order to withstand high temperatures and hot surfaces. 

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Scotch tape has a very high range of melting temperature as compared to other kinds of tape. This is why Scotch tape is highly preferred when it comes to using it on products that produce high heat.  

When the Scotch tape is exposed to temperatures as high as 100°C (212°F), its adhesive starts disintegrating due to which the tape does not stick anymore. If the temperature is increased up to 175°C (347°F), it results in the melting of the tape completely.

This is why Scotch tape needs to be used under proper precautions. However, the chances of this occurring are pretty low, especially if you are using the tape only for household purposes as the melting point of the tape is very high. 


Is Scotch Tape Conductive?

3M company has a product line of Scotch electrical tapes, which have conductive properties. However, you should never use regular Scotch tape with any electrical application as it cannot withstand high voltages and it can melt or become explosive.

Scotch tape can not be used in super high voltages. This is because the tape may catch fire if there is an excessive amount of voltage. Regular Scotch tape lacks flexibility and electrical insulation

This means if you are planning to cover live wires of your house with Scotch tape, then consider this as a warning. Instead, you can use Scotch 13 electrical tape which is made of semi-conductive rubber. It is suitable for low-voltage electrical applications.

Is Scotch Tape Waterproof?

No, Scotch tape is not waterproof. They cannot withstand prolonged contact with water. It might be dangerous to use them in moist places. Therefore, it can be used in the presence of water for only a very short period of time. 

So if you are planning to make use of Scotch tape in your fish aquarium, you might have to rethink the decision. While it might seem like a short-term solution, it will not be able to withstand the moisture for long. 

It could appear simple to connect the equipment inside the tank with tape, which is why so many aquarists choose this method. Scotch tape does not have a waterproof coating. Underwater or in an aquarium environment, they are ineffective as an adhesive. To temporarily address the issue, you can apply Teflon tape instead.

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If you are looking for some waterproof adhesives, you might want to consider these options – cement, super glue, hot melt glue, and silicone.

Is Scotch Tape Biodegradable?

Yes! Scotch tape, also known as cellophane tape, is biodegradable because it is a pure cellulose transparent tape. Wood and other natural materials are used to make cellophane. Although cellophane cannot be recycled, it can be composted or disposed of in ordinary garbage because it degrades over time.

The need for being more eco-friendly has created the need for companies to launch more eco-friendly products. The company under which Scotch tapes are made, 3M, has launched a new Scotch magic greener tape which is a more environmentally friendly version of their product. 

Therefore, if you are looking for a better option than regular Scotch tape, you can consider the more eco-friendly version launched by the company.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Insulate Electrical Wires With Scotch Tape?

You should never use regular Scotch tape with electrical wires as they are not designed to withstand electrical applications. However, you can use Scotch electrical tapes like Scotch 13 which is good enough for low-voltage applications. 

Can You Use Scotch Tape on a Hot Surface?

Yes, you can use Scotch tape on very hot surfaces. However, the surface shouldn’t be hotter than 100°C (212°F) as it will be difficult for the rubber adhesive to bond properly with the hot surface. 

Is Scotch Tape Toxic When Burnt? 

When burnt, Scotch tape can produce poisonous fumes that can cause irritation to the eyes and the skin. So, it is advised to avoid burning Scotch tape or any adhesive tape. 

Which Scotch Tape Is Least Heat-Resistant?

White, black, red, and blue Scotch tapes are equally heat-resistant. However, the blue Scotch tape tends to lose adhesiveness faster than other Scotch tapes when exposed to fire. 

Final Thoughts

We truly hope that this article is useful in informing you about the Scotch tape in detail and answering all your answers. 

To sum up, Scotch tape is one of the safest tools you can use in your household. They have a very high melting point and are able to withstand high temperatures without catching fire. However, when pushed beyond their potential, they can become hazardous. 

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