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Which joint sealant is better, acrylic, polysulfide, polyurethane or silicone?

Which joint sealant is better, acrylic, polysulfide, polyurethane or silicone?

There are four generic types of joint sealant with high performance. Their properties are highlighted in the following table:

Acrylic Polysulfide Polyurethane Silicone
Accommodate 12% movement. Poor recovery

in high cyclic



50% movement.


50% movement.

Exhibit shrinkage upon curing Exhibit excellent

chemical resistance

Excellent bonding, can

be used without primer

Excellent low temperature

movement capability

Solvent-based. Good performance in submerged conditions. Good UV


Excellent UV and heat stability

This question is taken from book named – A Self Learning Manual – Mastering Different Fields of Civil Engineering Works (VC-Q-A-Method) by Vincent T. H. CHU.

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Kanwarjot Singh

Kanwarjot Singh is the founder of Civil Engineering Portal, a leading civil engineering website which has been awarded as the best online publication by CIDC. He did his BE civil from Thapar University, Patiala and has been working on this website with his team of Civil Engineers.

2 comments on "Which joint sealant is better, acrylic, polysulfide, polyurethane or silicone?"

v.syed ycoob says:

in expansion joint application which is polysulfide or polyuerthane good longlostin to the expansion joint work

Rahul Kaul says:

expansion joint application is somewhat a big subject to discuss and hence very difficult to comment on which product chemistry is best suitable. with the ongoing research and product modification polyurethane seems to have upper edge compare to polysulphide or silicone based chemistry.
the reason for the same is good mechinical, abression and adhesion properties.

and interms of application and surface preparation, here again polyurethane scores better over other chemistries.

many of us get confused with the term expantion joint, i strongly suggest what type of building joint you mean… like isolation joints, connecting joints, horizontal and vertical joints, pavement joints etc…based on the type of joint, substrate and conditions different type of sealant chemistry offer there usp.

hope i managed to answer your point to some extent

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