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Sealing, Potting and Encapsulating

3M Sealing, Potting and Encapsulating product solutions for ultimate protection.

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Reliable protection for your designs.

Seals are required along the length of a seam. Potting and encapsulating encases the entire part or chamber to protect the components inside. Both prevent fluid ingress or egress and are found throughout industry, but are especially common in applications exposed to the elements or with high-value internal components, including transportation, metalworking, electronics and construction.

  • Adhesive or sealant being applied over seam in metal sheet


    Tape or sealant is applied over a seam to prevent fluid ingress or fluid egress. Examples include roof seams on vehicles, seams on metal enclosures and pipe sealing.​

  • Adhesive flows over and around a component

    Potting and Encapsulating

    Adhesive flows over and around a component or fills in a chamber to protect components therein. Examples include heavy duty electrical cords and connectors, electronics in plastic cases, circuit boards and concrete repair.​​

  • A seal must be highly elongating and flexible, durable, and fast setting. By definition, mechanical fasteners almost always require a secondary seal because penetrations in a surface allow fluid and vapor to freely flow into an assembly.

    Sealing, Potting and Encapsulating Typically Requires

    • Flexibility
    • Ease of Application
    • Time to paint (or handle part)
    • Immediate Rework


Peel, Compression and Tension Stresses when Sealing, Potting or Encapsulating​

If the assembly requires two overlaps or butt joints to be sealed, the sealant is often exposed to peel forces. Foot traffic over doorway thresholds or wind on a railcar roof continually attempt to peel a sealant, whether tape or adhesive, off the part. If the application is potted or encapsulated, the adhesive (tapes are not a good fit here) often sees compression and tension as the part experiences thermal expansion or contraction. Many potted parts, on circuit boards for example, can see all three stresses – peel, compression and tension.

  • Tjoint compression stress in adhesive joint
  • Tjoint tensile stress in adhesive joint
  • Peel and Cleavage stress in adhesive joint

Redesign joints to allow the adhesive or tape to do double duty – bond and seal the design with a sing.

Protect your design with 3M products
After all the time you put into making the perfect product, make sure it’s protected against vibration, moisture and other contaminants with reliable 3M products. 3M tapes, sealants and adhesives permanently seal gaps and seams without sagging, pot or encapsulate sensitive components and cure quickly for painting.​

Product Categories for Sealing, Potting and Encapsulating

  • Acrylic, epoxy and urethane structural adhesives are available in a variety of cure times and flow profiles for potting and encapsulation. Available in both rigid and flexible formulations.

  • Acrylic, polyurethane and nitrile and hybrid are one component sealing technologies. Can be extruded in any shape on a substrate and are non-sag to fill gaps. Some formulations can be painted wet.

  • Provides instant sealing and paint-ability when applied over seams or gaps. Conformable over rivets.

  • Extrudable, 100% solid, thermoplastic resins designed for potting and encapsulating electrical components.

Performance Factors for Sealing, Potting and Assembly

All 3M technologies shown below are commonly used in sealing, potting and encapsulating applications. Use the list below as a relative comparison of product performance.

  • + = Good ++ = Better +++ = Best
Potting and Encapsulating
  • + = Good ++ = Better +++ = Best

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Need help finding the right product for your project? Contact us if you need product, technical or application advice or want to collaborate with a 3M technical specialist, or give us a call at +971 4 3670 777.

Need help finding the right product for your project? Contact us if you need product, technical or application advice or want to collaborate with a 3M technical specialist, or give us a call at +971 4 3670 777.