The Science Behind Electrical Tape

You’ve probably used electrical tape before. Despite its name that implies a rather specific application for electrical tape, it’s actually a pretty good all-around adhesive tape. It’s tough, it’s got a little give to it, and it’s readily accessible.

Electrical tape is a tape usually made from some type of plastic, most commonly vinyl. It is pressure sensitive, meaning that it can be ripped to separate tape from the roll rather than cut. It has a lot of give to it, allowing it to be stretched tight to create secure connections. The adhesive is usually made from rubber, which offers superior insulation from electrical shock. The rubber adhesive also allows for clean removal from most smooth surfaces.

First invented in the 1940s by the 3M corporation, the tape was created to serve as wire harness wrapping. The first electrical tape wasn’t black, either, despite the color’s popularity these days. Yellow was used to indicate high tolerance to temperatures, and regular electrical tape was white. However, it was quickly found that the white tape didn’t hold up well to ultra violet light, so they switched to black tape instead.

The tape is proof against electricity due to the vinyl and the rubberized adhesive. Neither material is conductive at all, allowing them to be used safely on electrical wires in homes, vehicles, appliances, electronics, and other items with electrical components.

Colored Electrical Tape

Most of the time when you think of electrical tape, you probably think of black tape. However, there are plenty of different colors of electrical tape available at Tapes Supply, and there’s a very good reason why you might want to invest in at least a few different hues to keep in your toolbox. Order a few of the ten available options and keep them on hand.

When you’re dealing with electrical systems, it can get complicated very quickly. The various colors of tape can be used to color code electrical wires to make them easier to sort out. While it’s a handy trick, knowing which wire goes where based upon a color coding system could save you from serious injury by electrical shock or other accidents like house fires and power surges that can damage expensive electronics.

Approved Electrical Tape

In order to ensure that tape is good for electrical work, you’ll want to watch for a certification. These certifications are given by Underwriter’s Laboratory. You’ll also want a tape that is listed by CSA. The electrical tape sold at Tapes Supply possesses both of these guarantees.

Other Uses for Electrical Tape

As I said, despite its incredible electricity-proof properties, electrical is a great all-around adhesive tape. It is often times used to wrap around drum sticks to help them hold up better and to create a uniform color. You’ll see it on hockey sticks, at the grip and at the end of the stick, in hockey games throughout the world, from the peewees to professional leagues. Electrical tape is often used to cover tennis balls to create a smooth surface for playing cricket, as well.

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