519 767 2899


A Look at Soft Backer Rods

August 13, 2021

In most applications where proper sealing is crucial, like in the case of closing a joint or sealing windows, backer rods are often the chosen tool. This is because this backing foam material is very flexible and comes in different thicknesses to fill any size of gap. The rod’s key function is to create a backstop that prevents the sealant from getting too deep or shallow into the gap. It is also used to provide more surface area for the sealant to effectively bond to.


The biggest concern about backer rods is how to choose between its two main types: closed-cell or open-cell. Closed-cell and open-cell rods are also known as hard and soft backer rods respectively.


In today’s blog, we will be taking a closer look at soft backer rods and its benefits and drawbacks. 


The Advantages of Soft Backer Rods

The biggest benefit of soft backer rods is its ability to be fitted into various gap sizes due to its high flexibility. Being soft in its structure, it is bendable and can be used to create multi-sided seals. Hence, soft backer rods are very popular in all sorts of applications. This is why they are chosen in situations where movement is a concern such as in the case of pavements, concrete roads, and in airport runways.


The Drawbacks of Soft Backer Rods

The most obvious problem with soft backer rods is their inability to exclude moisture that can cause damage to the foam, compromising its function in sealing a joint or gap. Moreover, they are also more prone to break down internally as heat spreads throughout the material easily. In this types of situations, closed-cell backer rods are more suitable to use than soft backer rods.


Alcot Plastics offers a wide variety of backing rods for all sorts of applications. If you are not sure which one is the best for your applications, feel free to give us a call for help.