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What do I need to consider when buying packaging tape?

When you purchase tape to ship your products, one of the first things you’ll ask is “Will this keep my packaging secure during shipping?”

But you should consider other questions too. How should you store your tape? What if your product will spend weeks or months in a stock room or warehouse? What type of tape will stick to my packaging best? How strong a tape do I need? Does width matter?

Here are a few of the factors you should consider about tape:

1. Temperature

Unused plastic tape can last a long time with proper care. Paper tape will last forever. The best situation for plastic tapes is a dark, climate controlled room so your tape retains its adhesive quality. The same holds true for after tape is used for shipping and what is good for your tape is good for your products. Some tapes are designed to withstand colder temperatures such as Hi-Tack Freezer Tape. Always asks for the tapes specifications if you are unsure of what you need or ask for a sample.

2. Adhesive

Talk to your tape supplier to find the best type of adhesion for your packaging. Some tape varieties will adhere better to your boxes than others. There are hot melt and acrylic adhesives for polypropylene tape and PVC comes with a rubber-based adhesive. Paper tape comes with a water-based adhesive. Ask for samples to test on your packaging if you want to be sure of what will stick best.

3. Grade

The term “grade” refers to the thickness of the tape. The higher that number, the thicker and stronger the tape. Polypropylene comes in 1.9 mil, 2.5 mil (Heavy Duty) and 2.9 mil (Extra Heavy Duty). Our most popular tape is the regular 1.9 mil polypropylene, which sticks so well to cardboard boxes. For heavier shipments, consider Heavy Duty or Extra Heavy Duty. PVC comes in 2.2 mil and 2.9 mil (Heavy Duty). Paper tape comes in 240, 260 and 280 grades, each stronger than the previous one.

4. Width

Width can be determined by a few factors. How big is your logo? How heavy is your box? Having a wider tape means more adhesive to seal the package. Our standard widths are 2” and 3” but we can customize the width to fit your needs. Overall, make sure you’ve chosen a tape wide enough to maximize the look of your logo and strong enough to keep your packages sealed.

5. Color

Choosing the tape color is usually a matter of design and can be determined by the color of your boxes or the brand appearance that you are striving to achieve. We offer the standard tape colors of white, tan and clear as well as some colors like red and yellow. In addition we can also flood coat white tape with any custom color. Sometimes companies use color tape for caution reasons or it fits their branding. Different colored tapes can also help distinguish between different products or shipments to different locations. If you aren’t sure which type of tape will work best for your needs, Phoenix Tape can help. We’ve spent decades helping companies like yours choose tape that shares your message while also keeping your products secure.