In an earlier blog, I discussed the role of clear protective laminates in protecting your labels from outdoor exposure and chemicals.
Electromark’s Duracryl™ has continuously proven to be the best defense when it comes to the most significant factor affecting weathering durability: UV radiation from sunlight.
That is, until Vandlshield UV™.
What’s a Fluoropolymer?
Fluoropolymers are a class of plastics whose chemical properties provide for a high level of resistance to UV radiation, chemicals, heat, and abrasion.
A typical household fluoropolymer most people are familiar with is Teflon™; used on cookware for its non-stick coating properties.
The properties of thin-film clear laminate fluoropolymers also make them ideal for protection of long-term, outdoor graphics.
If you’re a label specifier, you’re probably familiar with the high-performing graphic protection fluoropolymer laminate Tedlar®.
Regarding UV resistance, Duracryl™ provides about 20% longer life than Tedlar® – at a lower cost.
The fluoropolymer-based Vandlshield UV™ pushes label performance level beyond both!
In laboratory tests using industry standard accelerated weathering and UV exposure equipment, Vandlshield UV™ demonstrated nearly two times the durability of labels laminated with Tedlar®.
Vandlshield UV™ provides both the premium UV resistance and the chemical resistance required for demanding applications.
Why chemical resistance matters
Chemical resistance is a desirable feature because it protects labels from the solvents used to remove graffiti and other unwanted markings.
Solvents meant for paint removal can ruin laminates without chemical resistant properties.
In the process of graffiti removal, these solvents remove vandalism but also attack the original unprotected material.
The Best of both worlds
Electromark’s new Vandlshield UV™ film is a fluoropolymer.
Although fluoropolymers share unique molecular chemistry, not all fluoropolymers provide equal performance characteristics.
Vandlshield UV™ provides excellent chemical resistance, allowing defacement to be easily cleaned away with conventional paint and graffiti removal solvents.
Vandlshield UV™ outperforms other fluoropolymers in protecting underlying materials and printed graphics from deterioration and fade due to exposure to the UV radiation in sunlight.
The Vandlshield UV™ value proposition
When used with Electromark’s standard high-quality combination of base materials, inks, and printing processes, Electromark offers an 18-year warranty for its signs and labels protected with Vandlshield UV™.
Let’s compare this to Electromark’s already great performing Duracryl™ label material or reflective aluminum signs; each of which carries a 10-year warranty.
The Vandlshield UV™ option increases our product price by approximately 30% when compared to Duracryl™ or reflective aluminum signs.
That’s an 80% increase in durability for only 30% added cost.
This is a winning combination when you consider the added cost, effort, and labor necessary to replace a label or sign when its printed colors have faded, or can no longer be read.
Vandlshield UV™ protective laminate option is available for the following:
- Reflective and non-reflective label materials
- Reflective or non-reflective aluminum sign materials
- Solar Grade polycarbonate sign material
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I have been in my present role as Technical Sales and Application Engineer with Electromark for 9+ years, and with the company for 14 years. My earlier experience with the company was with our printing and other manufacturing operations. My knowledge with Electromark and the industries it serves includes materials, products, process capabilities, weathering durability, regulations, and standards. See my Linkedin profile at https://www.linkedin.com/in/brandon-furber-0036644a/
With over 40 years of experience, Electromark specializes in identification and safety marking solutions for the electrical utility industry, other service utilities, and the outdoor industrial workplace. Our products are engineered for the harsh, outdoor environment.