There are so many different caulks and sealants how is someone to know what the best is fit for their project?
There are a variety of products to choose from. Check the container for suggested uses and product type. Pricing on a tube of caulk can vary from a couple dollars to over $20 per tube. How do you know that you are not paying the right amount for your product and getting the functionality that you need?
Here are a few things that may help you which type of caulk to use for your project…
Silicones are great for shedding water. These very flexible sealants are ideal for metal to glass joints, glass to masonry, masonry to masonry joints. They hold up well under uv and can maintain their flexibility for over 10 years. A downfall of silicones is they are limited to what they can be coated with. You only coat over silicone with a silicone coating so normal paints will not adhere to this product.
Urethanes are good for expansion joints that are being coated. Urethanes tend to get more brittle with UV exposure, heat, and age, so over time have less and less flexibility. You can coat over them with most paints so if you are painting over these are a good alternative to the silicone. Also keep in mind that if they are coated over and that coating is maintained the urethane is not getting exposed directly to the sunlight so can hold up longer.
Hybrids are somewhere in between a urethane and a silicone so can get harder over time like the urethanes, but are supposed to be somewhat more resilient. The hybrids can be coated over with most exterior paints as well.
Acrylics caulks do not have the flexibility or resilience to handle most exterior applications particularly on cracks greater than 1/8 inch with any kind of expected movement. These are better suited for interior trim applications.
As mentioned, each of these products has many sub-categories and wide ranges of prices within these categories.
Specifications are often written with the price, warranty requirements, and general conditions in mind. If you would like help in understanding what is the best solution for your project we would be happy to help you determine this!