While hot melt adhesives are an excellent solution for many industrial applications, the high temperatures of the process need to be carefully controlled to avoid problematic fumes. When hot melt adhesives are heated, they inevitably release some fumes. That is the odor you detect when working close to hot melt nozzles. While having some fumes is normal, excessive fumes suggest a problem with your process and require some attention.
Our team has seen examples of hot melt adhesive smoking and have some tips on how you can make adjustments to reduce the amount of smoking you have.
Check Your Process
To stop hot melt adhesive from smoking, take a look at your various hot melt process parameters:
- Temperature: The temperature of your hot melt gun or nozzle is critical. Too low and your adhesive doesn’t melt and flow properly. Too hot and your adhesive becomes too runny and can release annoying and irritating smoke. In some cases, burnt adhesive can discolor the final glue bead, and can also contribute to charring. Adjust your temperature setting according to the manufacturer’s settings for your hot melt equipment as well as the manufacturer’s temperature recommendations for the specific glue you’re using.
- Orifice and mesh size: If the orifice size of your nozzle and the mesh size of your inline filter is not correct, you can have problems pushing your adhesive through and onto your products. An overly restrictive nozzle allows hot melted adhesive to back up and stay in the nozzle longer, which can lead to overheating. Verify that you have the correct flow through your nozzle at the indicated temperature and replace your nozzles and your inline filter assembly or filter cartridge if necessary. Our team can help determine if you have the right hot melt adhesive set up for your application.
- Nozzle and work zone cleanliness: Adhesive residue buildup on your nozzles, in your applicator head and in the vicinity of your work areas can cause melt adhesive problems and smoking. An adhesive that has already been burnt and has dried will smoke more easily than fresh, unmelted hot melt adhesive. Accumulation of used, dried adhesive on your applicator head and nozzle is a common source of smoke.
While a small amount of smoking from your hot melt equipment is expected, if you are experiencing excessive smoking that causes eye or throat irritation, there are solutions. With years of experience as a leader in the hot melt adhesive market, here at Keystone Industries®, we can help you understand why your hot melt dispenser is smoking. Always make sure that you are following manufacturer guidelines for your nozzles, modules and hoses as well as the glue that you are using.
Hot melt adhesives are suitable for a wide range of industrial applications, so get the most out of your system and avoid uncomfortable and annoying fumes. If you have any questions or need to replace any of your equipment, accessories or hot melt products, browse our catalog or contact our team for assistance.