Winter is coming… and depending on where you epoxy pros are at, that means the weather is changing. Since epoxy resin is heavily reliant on precise temperatures, it’s important to know how cold weather might play a role in your epoxy-making endeavors. And we’re here to help! Let’s talk about the major ways that temperature can negatively affect resin and how, if possible, you can combat these issues.
Temperature and Curing
New and experienced DIYers alike may wonder; Will epoxy resin cure in cold weather?
Since the ideal temperature for working with epoxy is around 75 degrees Fahrenheit, anything lower will begin to alter the curing time. For some, this can work to their advantage. Since it will take longer for your project to cure, you’ll have a slightly longer working time. It will not be a substantial amount of extra time, however, and you should keep in mind that the cold can continue to affect resin in other ways that are not as easy to work around, like with its viscosity.
Temperature and Product Viscosity
In colder temperatures, epoxy will not flow as smoothly. If you try mixing it in cooler climes, you may notice that it becomes a little bit thicker. This means it will also be more difficult to mix thoroughly, which is essential for consistent cures and finishes. Under-mixing (article link) is, in fact, a common problem that resin users encounter.
While our resins are normally self-leveling and have high flow, the colder you allow them to get, the more likely this won’t be the case. When resin isn’t allowed to level properly, you get uneven surfaces and divots instead of the usual smooth, glossy cure.
Due to the fact that two-part epoxy resin requires such a carefully measured ratio, additional moisture in any capacity can have a negative effect. This is why you have to make sure all of your measuring cups and stirring utensils are dry before you use them as well.
How to Fight the Cold
Just like there are ways we can combat the elements for ourselves, there is a lot you can do to ensure that your epoxy resin stays the temperature you need to create your masterpieces. The best thing you can do is ensure that your workspace is of a sufficient temperature when you’re working with resin. The ideal temperature is between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
When it comes to storage, epoxy resin should always be stored in a place that is both cool and dark. By “cool”, we mean within the temperature range you should be working with epoxy at, as mentioned above. This will help prevent any future curing issues or yellowing from occurring within the bottles. Be sure to seal your bottles tightly (if they have been opened) before you store them!
Whenever you’re concerned about colder temperatures, you can always put the unopened bottles in a warm water bath. Before you work with the resin This will help bring the product up to that much-needed temperature range before you get to work. For optimal results, this should be done roughly 10 to 15 minutes before you begin measuring and mixing.
Warm baths may be necessary if your epoxy resin has traveled through frigid temperatures on the way to your doorstep. If you suspect that your product may have been exposed to the cold during the shopping process, use the warm water to help.
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