Don’t get stuck with the wrong adhesive. Stick with the adhesive experts!

3M certified on graphic adhesives

Labels. Graphics. Decals. Signs. Business essentials you rely on every day to communicate your message. And whether it’s for branding, safety information, instructions, or directions, you need the right tool for the job. This is especially true in manufacturing—where people rely on decals and labels to avoid injury and eliminate risks. Reliable, high performance signs and decals help you make a favorable and lasting impression on your audience.

Hold everything! There’s another side to the story.

While eye-catching designs, quality printing and rich color make an impression on your audience, they are only part of the story—how well your signs and labels perform over the years is determined in large part by the adhesives that back them up. Selecting the right adhesive for the job is key to getting the kind of performance you expect.

What you need to know about adhesives.

While there are many types of adhesives, not every adhesive has the right properties to perform the job you want it to do. Here are some things to keep in mind:


Where will this label or graphic be located? Temperature—whether hot or cold can have an effect on your label and its adhesive properties. Outdoor elements like sun, wind, rain and snow can cause an adhesive to degrade (fail) over time. Vibration and pressure can also play a role in causing an adhesive to lose its bonding power. And while all of these factors can adversely affect your adhesive performance, there’s more to think about.


What type of material(s) are you using? Although the job of an adhesive is to stick things together, different materials (substrates) have different properties. That means what sticks to one type of material, may not always stick to another. That’s why adhesives are engineered for specific types of purposes to work with different substrates.

  • Static cling. Usually made from flexible vinyl, signs that use static cling can adhere to indoor glass or other smooth surfaces—depending on the conditions. They are designed to be removed and reapplied.
  • Low surface energy (LSE) adhesives. Most LSE adhesives are rubber based and designed for labels and applications on surfaces including powder coated, Teflon, silicone, polystyrene, polyethylene, polypropylene to provide excellent permanent adhesion and long lasting value.
  • High surface energy (HSE) adhesives. Acrylic based adhesives for metals, PVC, polycarbonate, epoxy painted surfaces and polyurethane painted surfaces. Used for permanent branding, hazard decals and more.


The kind of adhesive you need depends on the type of job you need it to do.

  • Long-term adhesives. Strong and durable, long-term adhesive stay put, and are ideal for vehicle graphics, permanent decals, hazard decals or branding.
  • Removable adhesives. Designed to install easily and remove cleanly, removable adhesives provide short to medium durability and can be used for a variety of applications.
  • Long-term removable adhesives. These types of adhesives are used in applications like fleet graphics–where strong adhesion is necessary, but clean adhesive removal—even years later—is expected.


Another question to keep in mind is who will be installing your graphics, decals or signs? From pressure sensitive adhesives and pressure activated repositionable adhesives, you have a variety of choices for your needs.

Stick with the adhesive experts!

As a full-service graphics manufacturer, Wisconsin Screen Process (WISPI) is known for producing and installing high quality graphics and signs. Our knowledge of adhesives, substrates, inks, and processes, has helped us build a reputation as one of Wisconsin’s most trusted graphics suppliers.

As the trusted experts, WISPI works closely with you and with suppliers to make sure your signs, graphics and decals live up to your performance expectations and provide the value and service you need. At WISPI, we know the right questions to ask and the right materials to use to create long-lasting solutions for your graphic needs.

Our expertise and attention to design and detail have earned WISPI many repeat customers along with the highly respected 3M MCS Warranty. This certification is your assurance of optimum quality and performance—as well as a guarantee that your graphic will look good while it withstands the test of time.

If you have questions about an upcoming project, or just want to learn more about how to select the right adhesive for the job, contact us today!